Discussion Assignment: Deep Culture, Cultural Discontinuity, and Power
Your studies of culture and diversity have resulted in a rich collection of definitions, concepts, and practical implications. Three resources this week reflect additional facets of the complexity of culture: In the video as well as in the corresponding book excerpt, Janet Gonzalez-Mena discusses culture and explains what it means to be culturally responsive. And, Ngo’s article refers to the troublesome effects of over-simplifying other people’s cultural contexts.
To prepare for this Discussion Assignment,
- Review the video “Thinking about Diversity and Cultural Responsiveness,” the excerpt from Gonzalez-Mena’s book Diversity in Early Care and Education, and Ngo’s article “Beyond culture clash”
- Pay particular attention to the ways in which the authors address deep culture, cultural visibility and invisibility, cultural continuity and discontinuity, as well as the connection between culture and power
- Consider the following:
- Specific ways in which knowledge about “deep” culture enhances your understanding of yourself and other
- An example of cultural invisibility (one that happened to you, someone you know, or an instance you witnessed), and your reaction(s) to this experience
- An example of cultural discontinuity (one that happened to you, someone you know, or an instance of cultural discontinuity you witnessed), and your reaction(s) to this experience
- A memory when you, as a young child, felt (or did not feel) safe, nurtured, visible, and /or empowered, and your reaction(s) to this experience
- A memory when you, as a family member or caretaker, felt (or did not feel) visible and /or empowered in your interaction with someone you consider an “authority figure or someone of importance to you such as an early childhood professional, and your reaction(s) to this experience
- Your response to at least three of the statements above.
- A summary of the ways in which the points you chose to discuss add to your understanding of diversity and equity as it relates to the health and well-being of young children and their families.
Video: Laureate Education (Producer). (2011). Culture and diversity [Video file]. Retrieved from https://class.waldenu.edu
Note: The approximate length of this media piece is 4 minutes.
In this program, Janet Gonzalez-Mena talks about the concepts of diversity and cultural responsiveness.