Illinois Association for Cultural Diversity

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17th Dealing with Difference Institute
May 17-19, 2010
Western Illinois University, Macomb, IL

Dealing with Difference Institute Resources

The resources included here are provided in lieu of the usual printed material we have given DWDI participants during previous institutes. Given the rich resources available on the internet and our growing facility in accessing them, we hope you will find this a move forward. The descriptions of the websites here are for the most part taken from the websites. Suggestions for additions to the list of websites as well as to the printed material identified below are welcome.

Websites This site is prepared by Paul Gorski, a strong advocate of multicultural education who has gathered an immense amount of information for educators interested in cultural diversity. Links to other important multicultural and intercultural websites, such as the Teaching Tolerance site sponsored by the Southern Poverty Law Center, are just a click away once you access Gorski’s Critical Multicultural Pavilion. Some of the most important resources visitors can access via Tim Wise’s website are his blog entries. Articles that he has posted are always enlightening and at times provocative. Readers of this page may be familiar with one of his most recent entries, Imagine: Protest, Insurgency and the Workings of White Privilege, a “game” that involves envisioning recent events and replacing the white people who were actually the main actors in the scenes with people of color. The website also includes information about each of Wise's books as well as a biography. Pedagogy and Theatre of the Oppressed is a not-for-profit organization with the following mission: to challenge oppressive systems by promoting critical thinking and social justice." The organization developed from a series of conferences based on the work of Paulo Freire and Augusto Boal. Using pedagogy and theatre, they each worked with oppressed peoples of the world to develop critical literacies and actions to overcome social systems of oppression. The site has information about the PTO annual conference as well as an extensive list of resources, most of which revolve around the use of theatre in education. The National Women’s Studies Association is a professional organization “dedicated to leading the field of women's studies and gender studies. . . Members actively pursue a just world in which all persons can develop to their fullest potential – one free from ideologies, structures, or systems of privilege that oppress or exploit some for the advantage of others.” The University Film & Video Association website can lead educators to considerable information about films and filmmakers, perhaps the most valuable for educators interested in cultural diversity is the American Documentary Showcase, a curated program of contemporary documentaries offered to US embassies for screening abroad. The Showcase "offers a broad, diversified look at life in the United States and the values of a democratic society as seen by American documentary filmmakers. It is intended to demonstrate the role documentary plays in fostering understanding and cooperation." The titles and descriptions of the films included in the Showcase are particularly useful. This comprehensive site focuses primarily on commercial films but includes some fairly obscure independent and documentary films as well. It provides basic information about specific films (director, writer, actors, running time, etc.) as well as “external reviews.” The number of reviews depends on the release date as well as the significance critics and reviewers give to a film. This short article, "Question Authority," includes a succinct description of "the Master Narrative" as "a grand narrative of How the World Works that is supported and validated by society as a whole . . .the life story of the dominant culture." The article is from "RCG-I Seasonal Salon Winter Solstice 2003."

Books and Journals

Even though we depend increasingly on internet resources, books and journals are still valuable sources of information and insight, of course. The ones included here are related to the issues discussed during the DWDI. Again, suggestions for additions are welcome.

Carico, Kathleen. "Re-writing the 'Master' Narrative: Sue Monk Kidd's Journey to the Black Madonna." WILLA Volume XVI (2007-2008), pp. 21-26. Available at This article includes an explanation of the master narrative and applies the concept to a reading of Sue Monk Kidd's The Secret Life of Bees (2002). Carico's focus is on the role of Black Mary in the novel.

Carson, Diane, Linda Dittmar, and Janice R. Welsch, eds. Multiple Voices in Feminist Film Criticism. (Minnieapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1994). This anthology includes feminist approaches to the analysis of films and the ideologies behind how women are represented in film.

Haskell, Molly. Frankly, My Dear: Gone with the Wind Revisited. (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2009). An in-depth study of a film that seems to reflect much of the mythology that defines the USA.

Kord, Susanne, and Elisabeth Krimmer. Hollywood Divas, Indie Queens, & TV Heroines: Contemporary Screen Images of Women. (Boulder, CO: Rowman & Littlefield, 2005). Among the women whose films are analyzed: Julia Roberts, Sandra Bullock, Meg Ryan, Renee Zellweger, and Sarah Michelle Gellar ("Buffy the Vampire Slayer").
Since these actors have made films since this book was published, one might study their more recent work in relation to the patterns identified here by Kord and Krimmer.

Mandel, Jan, and Jennifer Lynn Wolf. Acting, Learning & Change: Creaitng Original Plays with Adolescents. (Portmouth, NH: Heinemann, 2003). The philosophy and activities covered in this book reflect the work of Paulo Freire and Augusto Boal as well as the practice advocated by Pedagogy and Theatre of the Oppressed. Having had Mandell lead workshops at WIU the past two years, we have witnessed the effectiveness of the actiivities she used during her workshops and explains in this text.

Storytelling, Self, Society: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Storytelling Studies. (New York: Routledge). This journal revolves around "scholarship addressing any topic related to Storytelling--from its role as performing art to contemporary applications in a variety of professional fields." Issue 6:2, May-August 2010, is a special issue dedicated to women and storytelling and to the role of women in folk literature and in oral storytelling.

Teel, Karen Manheim, and Jennifer E. Obidah, eds. Building Racial and Cultural Competence in the Classroom. (New York: Teachers College Press, 2008). This anthology includes many useful articles, but one that is related closely to discussions of master narratives is Ann Berlak's chapter on "Racial and Cultural Competence and the Adaptive Unconscious."

Welsch, Janice R. and J.Q. Adams. Multicultural Films: A Reference Guide. (Westport, CT: Greenwood, 2005). More aptly titled, "What Movies Tell Us about Race/Ethnicity in the United States," this volume contains over 150 reviews of films. How the films present race/ethnicity is the question shaping the analyses, whether the characters identify or are identified as indigenous Americans or African, Arab or Middle Eastern, Asian, European, or Latino/a Americans. Though the language used in the reviews does not include references to master or counter narratives, these are definitely at play within the films.