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Synopsis

How can teachers bridge the gap between their commitments to social justice and their day to day practice? This is the question author Adam Howard asked as he began teaching at an elite private school and the question that led him to conduct a six-year study on affluent schooling. Unfamiliar with the educational landscape of privilege and abundance, he began exploring the burning questions he had as a teacher on the lessons affluent students are taught in schooling about their place in the world, their relationships with others, and who they are.

Grounded in an extensive ethnographic account, Learning Privilege examines the concept of privilege itself and the cultural and social processes in schooling that reinforce and regenerate privilege. Howard explores what educators, students and families at elite schools value most in education and how these values guide ways of knowing and doing that both create high standards for their educational programs and reinforce privilege as a collective identity. This book illustrates the ways that affluent students construct their own privilege,not, fundamentally, as what they have, but, rather, as who they are.

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