January 10 – Public Education, Privatization, & Segregation: Authors Noliwe Rooks & Carla Shedd in Conversation

Join us for a conversation between Noliwe Rooks, who will discuss her book Cutting School: Privatization, Segregation, and the End of Public Education (The New Press, 2017), and CUNY professor CarIa Shedd, author of Unequal City: Race, Schools and Perceptions of Injustice (Russell Sage 2015). A Q&A will follow their conversation, and books will be available for purchase.

Cutting School deftly traces the financing of segregated education in America, from reconstruction through Brown v. Board of Education up to the current controversies around school choice, teacher quality, the school-to-prison pipeline, and more, to elucidate the course we are on today: the wholesale privatization of our schools. Public schools are among America’s greatest achievements in modern history, yet from the earliest days of tax-supported education—today a sector with an estimated budget of over half a billion dollars—there have been intractable tensions tied to race and poverty. Now, in an era characterized by levels of school segregation the country has not seen since the mid-twentieth century, cultural critic and American studies professor Noliwe Rooks provides a trenchant analysis of our separate and unequal schools and argues that profiting from our nation’s failure to provide a high-quality education to all children has become a very big business.

Unequal City examines the ways in which Chicago’s most vulnerable residents navigate their neighborhoods, life opportunities, and encounters with the law. In this pioneering analysis of the intersection of race, place, and opportunity, sociologist and criminal justice expert Carla Shedd illuminates how schools either reinforce or ameliorate the social inequalities that shape the worlds of adolescents in a city that has long struggled with racial residential segregation, high rates of poverty, and deepening class stratification.

Noliwe Rooks is the director of American studies at Cornell University and was for ten years the associate director of African American studies at Princeton University. She is the author of White Money/Black Power and Hair Raising. She lives in Ithaca, New York.

CarIa Shedd is an associate professor of Urban Education at the CUNY Graduate Center and was previously an assistant professor of sociology and African American studies at Columbia University.Unequal City received the 2015 C. Wright Mills Award from the Society for the Study of Social Problems and the 2016 Distinguished Contribution to Scholarship Book Award Presented by the American Sociological Association’s Section on Race, Gender, and Class.

Public Education, Privatization, & Segregation:
A conversation with authors Noliwe Rooks & Carla Shedd
Wednesday, January 10, 2018
6:30–8:30pm
Word Up Community Bookshop
2113 Amsterdam Ave. @ 165th St.
New York NY 10032

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