Summary Of John U. Ogbu's Cultural Model, Identity, And Literacy

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In John U. Ogbu’s, “Cultural model, identity, and literacy” he first starts by stimulating the reader with a question of why some ethnicities find it harder to acquire literacy than others. He then goes on to discuss theories of why this could be which leads him firstly to the argument of genetics. This adheres to the gap between whites and minorities simply because they were created to have an advantage but this is quickly debunked and is simply genetic differences that do not adhere to this literary gap. The theories continue to span over that of an economic standpoint, teacher expectations, class differences, and cultural conflicts. Of these theories, cultural conflicts seem to hold the most weight argumentatively due to its lack of generalizations …show more content…
This cultural model serves more so not to give distinctions between whites and minorities but rather to give differences from within minority groups. This in turn gives sound reasoning to why some minorities prosper while others do not. He explains that the reason there is two sides to a cultural model is due to how they seem themselves incorporated into the U.S. and their responses they make to subsequent treatment to their white counterparts. This argument weighs heavily in the eyes of immigrants and how they perceive their place in the U.S. and the prejudices they face daily. However, what defines their overall position is not this psychological onslaught they face but how they deal with these barriers. They believe to rise above it will take more than education and individual work. This is in relation to those who voluntarily came to the U.S. but on the other hand you have involuntary minorities who believe they cannot be treated on equally footing to their white counterparts. The difference among involuntary and voluntary immigrants boils down to a frame of reference where one side believes if they work hard enough then the outcome will be of their own choosing while the other side believes they are nothing more than second class …show more content…
The disadvantages can lie simply in the language and cultural differences must be overcome if they wish to reap the benefits that society has to offer. There are however positives to enrolling into school as a minority such as the schooling being better than what it would be in their home country, the notion that they are being treated better in the U.S., and finally the discrimination that they receive pushes them to strive for success. This is more so the standpoint of voluntary immigrants but when seen from an involuntary immigrants’ standpoint it is seen that they have a distrust of not only the white community but also the schooling, therefore they have a steady distrust for their low tier schools and the white people who run them. This argument brought by John clearly states that your cultural model does give insight to your literacy, but your circumstances surrounding that model can shift it into a positive connotation or a negative one. This best seen through voluntary or involuntary immigration and how they perceived their position in society differently which gave way to different

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