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June 05 , 2008

Understanding Conflict and Change in a Multicultural World


Learning about the history of cultural conflict helps teachers reduce it in classrooms. This book shows our common origins and reviews sources of conflict in the former Yugoslavia, Northern Ireland, and the Middle East. It reveals how prejudice and stereotypes about racial and religious minorities create problems in our schools.

Beginning with the human exodus out of Africa 60,000 years ago, tension arose among ethnic groups separated by geographic barriers. Changes in population, immigration, work and the role of religion are creating clashes in society and schools.

Students from different cultural backgrounds are being thrown together as mass transportation and telecommunications shrink our world. Inclusive classrooms with respectful learning environments can be achieved when we identify the sources of tension that separate and divide us. Students are more alike than different. Knowing about our common origin and challenges will help teachers become more effective.

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