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Pathologizing Practices

The Impact of Deficit Thinking on Education


Carolyn M. Shields, Russell Bishop and Andre Elias Mazawi

Pathologizing Practices is an innovative cross-cultural study that looks at how deficit thinking pathologizes the lived experiences of children and prevents minority children from achieving their full potential in schools. The book explores the contexts, cultures, and structures of the education systems within which three groups of students – Bedouin, Maori, and Navajo – have been marginalized. Taking a critical democratic perspective, the authors develop a cross-cultural analysis that examines ways in which social justice and academic excellence may be enhanced and pathologies of practice overcome.