THEME 1: Culture, Gender and Social Norms
Haught, John. Making Sense of Evolution: Darwin, God, and the Drama of Life. Louisville, KY: Westminster John Knox Press, 2010. Print.
This work traces the origin of humankind and the underlying values that have often informed behavior of man. Ever since the emergence of evolution theory, many questions have been posed in regards to its viability and especially on how it impacted human behavior over time. Evolution gives a scientific account of the development of man and it is often at loggerheads with the theological account of creation. The author of this work has a similar professional background with the author in the previous entry. Both authors have strong theological backgrounds in the Catholic Church and they are accomplished historians. This book gives an account of how the notion of natural selection affects the nature and actions of creations. John Haught, a Senior Research Fellow at Georgetown University’s Woodstock Center combines both scientific and religious theory to given an account for the cause of human behavior and social interactions and how the two have changed over time. In the last chapter, the author calls upon theology to assert that more intense and valuable modes of being are continuously being developed for humans.
Mumford, Lewis. The City in History: Its Origins, Its Transformations, and Prospects. New York City, NY: Harvest/LBJ Books, 1961. Print.
In this work, Mumford Lewis takes a historical account of civilization by critically analyzing the evolution of cities from the ancient era up to the modern age. The author then proceeds to take a prophetic outlook of civilization by projecting the future trends of cities. Mumford’s writing goes at great length to establish the role of dynamic nature of civilization in shaping the core fundamentals of human existence – our settlement patterns and the resulting interdependence. It is through such settlement patterns that the societal values are broadly established and defined resulting to the progressive levels of social transformations which are responsible for the current state of humanity. Mumford attributes the ever dominant social transformations in the society to the existence of hierarchical organization. The alternative term in the text for such organizations is megamachines. He purely views human existence as just one of the key component of the machine. From this analogy, Mumford proceeds to formulate the stage theory of civilization which has resulted to the emergence of most modern states. The armies of the world, the builders of the pyramids, the Roman Empire, the ancient Mayans up to the modern technocratic nuclear powers like the United States and the Soviet Union’s bureaucratic ideals are just a manifestation of the stage theory of civilization throughout history. Mumford proceeds to argue that it is from such ideals that collective human values and social norms are resultantly formulated. As a sociologist, philosopher and famed historian Mumford’s work is basically derived from a thorough secondary study from which he seems to conclude that the structure of modern civilizations is at the core of the causes of the many social problems that are inherent in the modern world. He projects a similar fate to that of the Roman City if the current urban culture progresses as currently constituted.
Morgan, Gareth. Images of Organizations, Updated Edition. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications, Inc., 2006. Print.
O’Malley, John. Four Cultures of the West. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2004. Print.O’Callaghan, Phyllis. Ed. Values in Conflict: An Interdisciplinary Approach. Lanham, MD: University Press of America, 1997. Print.
Stone, Merlin. Ancient Mirrors of Womanhood: A Treasury of Goddess and Heroine Lore from Around the World. Boston, MA: Beacon Press, 1991. Print.
A discussion on human civilization is cannot be deemed complete is the various gains that women have made over the centuries is not put into perspective. While discussing the input of civilization on our values and social transformation, it would be imperative to include the liberal gains that women have made over time and how such gains have contributed to the changing social norms. The author of this book traces the historical wins that women have made over a society that was always deemed oppressive to women’s aspirations. Tracing back the struggles in social recognition by various groups of womenfolk, Stone takes a global outlook on issues related to women empowerment and how advances in this end have come to be synonymous with civilization gains.
Stone, Merlin. When God Was A Woman. New York City, NY: Harvest, 1976. Print.
Drawing from the works of Robert Graves, the author gives a prehistoric account of feminism and how it has since been influenced by civilization trends. Stone traces the advent of male dominated society to the later development of Christianity which was heavily critical towards the ancient worship of goddesses. According to the author, the Bible was very instrumental in advancing the notion of male gods and male oriented societal rites. The suppression of women rites during the prehistoric times is extensively discussed by the author. Women’s liberties have been key outcomes of the pursuit of civilization ideals. This text will further build on the previous work of Stone M especially in advancing the role of women in shaping the values embodies by humanity.
Friedman, Thomas. The World is Flat (Updated and Expanded). New York City, NY: Farrar, Strauss and Giroux, 2006. Print.
In this text, Pulitzer-winning author and New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman draws from his vast global travel experiences in the first decade of the twenty first century to underpin the impacts of globalization on the traditional values and social systems of humanity. The author contends that globalization is the new form of civilization in the twenty first century and that the phenomenon is unstoppable. He then proceeds to detail the irreversible effects of globalization on the modern society and how such effects are manifested by the different members of the society. The author uses the title of the test to represent a more equitable society where people across the globe have similar opportunities and experiences as a result of the globalization phenomenon. Most of the work in the text is based on the authors own reflections of the various events that always transpire during his travelling escapades to various parts of the globe. Friedman proceeds to identify the ten phenomenon that have aided globalization and greatly impacted the social fabric of the world. He refers to the various phenomena as flatteners. New societal values and expectations have resulted from these flatteners. The flatteners as identified by Friedman includes the collapse of the Berlin Wall that fundamentally altered foreign relations among the most powerful nations of the time; the public listing of Netscape which the author considers to be symbolic of the increasing influence of the internet in shaping our future outcomes; workflow simplification through the development of software that encouraged collaboration and sharing ideas. The growing popularity and efficiencies of supply chains, insourcing, outsourcing or offshoring and informing are the other flatteners which the author greatly dwells on as sure game changers in the global social dynamics. The “steroids” is the word that the author opts to use to refer to a vast multitude of technologies that have endeavored to change the functioning of the society in the twentieth century. Friedman proposes that societies should be more adaptable if indeed they want to remain relevant in this century of civilization that is globally centered.
Glanz, Jeffrey. Cultural Leadership. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press, 2006. Print.
In this text, the author explores the relationship between sustainable cultural leadership and its role in social transformations and entrenching the development of human values. The author dwells on the role of organizations in influencing human values through best practices in sustaining positive organizational culture and climate. Most human values are acquired through the interaction with an education system. The author relates this process with a school system and extensively dwells on how people can build an ethic of caring from an early age. The role of visionary leadership in the development of values is also discussed with the author examining selected best practices in visionary leadership which is founded on examining values and beliefs, actualizing visions and the composition of personal vision statements from an early age. A secondary study is included that lists the best practices in promoting cultural diversity and how humanity can deal with the ever present problem of change and conflict.
Lerner, Gerda. The Creation of Feminist Consciousness: From the Middle Ages to Eighty-Seventy. New York City, NY: Oxford University Press, 1993. Print.
Issues surrounding feminism have grown into prominence in the modern society to define the previously suppressed rights of a women majority in the society. In contrast to the modern society, the traditional society was notorious or retracting issues affecting women to the background, women were only considered as caretakers of the family. They had no other role to play in the society beyond this. However, the emergence of feminism movements has vastly increased the social space for women in the society. Modern women have a social voice and they can influence policy issues in the society and shape the direction of societal growth. The author refers to this awareness as the feminist conscious and this book takes a historical account to trace its origin from the middle ages up to the late eighteen hundreds. Among the issues covered by the author includes self-authorization of the feminine population, the education disadvantages that were previously faced by women, the traditional role played by religions in suppressing women rights, the right of women to define, teach and learn and lastly, the role of social spaces, female networks and female clusters in pushing for social transformations. The author concludes the text with a chapter that is wholly dedicated to the social struggles of womenfolk over the years and the various achievements that have been achieved in the period. Lerner’s work will be relevant in determining the role that a select gender group has played in shaping our social values and entrenching the much required tenets of equality in our society. The book documents the triumphs that have been achieved over history and what the future portends for feminism movements.
Ehrenreich, Barbara, and Deirdre English. Witches, Midwives, and Nurses: A History of Women Healers. New York City, NY: The Feminist Press, 2010. Print.
This work assesses the prospects of healthcare in the United States, one primarily characterized by inefficiencies and anomalies. Ehrenreich and English asserted that corruption has distinguished the woeful state of healthcare in the United States – a premise they have pointed to the involvement of witch hunters. Adding to the original 1973 edition is a new chapter dedicated to discussions, controversies and illustrations on witches – a destructive metaphor referring to women healers. The same chapter, as it focuses on the history of witches, also talks about how political and economic factors have caused the monopolization of medicine. The significance of the new chapter denotes contemporary trends on particular medical endeavors, including alternative medicine and childbirth. Ehrenreich is a New York Times-bestselling author whose works include Bait and Switch and This Land is Their Land. English is a professor affiliated with the University of California-Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism who once edited Mother Jones.
THEME 2: Enhancing School Administration and Educational Performance
Essex, Nathan. School Law and the Public Schools: A Practical Guide for Educational Leaders. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education, 2012. Print.
Apart from families, schools are also becoming very influential in determining the directions of social transformations in our society. Education gives it’s a participant a glimpse of how the society was set up in the past and how such set ups can be improved going into the future. Education is a link between past societal set up and the transformational possibilities that the future holds for our societies. With this critical role that education plays in changing our societies for the better, Essex Nathan’s book becomes indispensable in ensuring educational leaders take up their roles in transforming the society for the better. In this book, the author, who is an accomplished educational leader provided an essential reference for all policymakers, school leaders and teachers who serve in modern public schools in the United States. Public schools absorb the highest number of school going students and teachers in the United States. The author provides vital information on contemporary legal and historical issues affecting the administration and organization of public educational institutions in America.
Nathan recognizes the leading role that schools play in shaping the thinking of the young minds from an early age and how such a critical role can be harnessed to transform our national values and hence our broader society. However, such schools can properly undertake this role if only they are managed in a style that is inclusive for all American students. The author addresses broad issues that are affecting schools including copyright laws and use of new medias, cyberbullying and how it impacts young school going children, Response to Intervention, school safety, restraining laws involving students who are affected with physical disabilities or mental disorders, the practice of freedom of expression in American public schools, liability insurance for administrators and school teachers and most importantly how to deal with the increasing incidences of school truancy that are responsible for a growing number of dropouts among selected members of American racial groups.
Kaplan, Frances. Art Therapy and Social Action: Treating the World’s Wounds. United Kingdom: Jessica Kingsley Publishers, 2007. Print.
Instances of social transformations, if not managed well, will lead to new social problems that have never been experienced in the society prior. Equally Kaplan recognizes that the said social problems if not well managed, have the tendency of wiping out all the gains made from the social transformations that the society has undergone – new undesirable values may emerge as a result. This will have the undesirable outcome of defeating the sole purpose of social transformations which ideally should be the betterment of the human society. The author recognizes that social problems are undesirable in the society and thus comes up with ways through which such social problems can be addressed. In the book, the author proposes art therapy interventions to counter the social problems that might accompany social change. The author views art therapy as a powerful intervention that can mediate between an individual and the community and also between the “unconscious and the conscious”. The author proposes a therapy regiment that inculcates spiritual and social awareness and provides working conceptual frameworks of their actual application in the United States and the United Kingdom. In the proceeding chapters, Kaplan proceeds to provide a compilation of essays that document the efficacy of art therapy in dealing with selected social problems. Kaplan lists community building, terrorism, gun violence, trauma, conflict resolution, homelessness and aggression and anger management as some of the social problems which can be addressed through art therapy. The author is an accomplished art therapist and a teacher of graduate therapy at Portland State University’s Marylhurst College.
Bosher, William, Kaminski, Kate, and Richard Vacca. The School Law Handbook: What Every Leader Needs to Know. Alexandria, VA: ASCD, 2004. Print.Hogan, Susan. Feminist Approaches to Art Therapy. New York City, NY: Routledge, 1997. Print.
Several issues concerning the welfare of women duly characterize art therapy; this work focuses on the aspects of the mental health of women, popular culture in relation to treatises on psychiatry involving women and the lives of women viewed from sociopolitical lens. This work has included various examples of cases on women, which includes empowerment and sexuality, among many others. Race, age and class issues also form a large part of the literature the work has cited. Art therapy, from the view of Hogan in this work, has to proceed in a manner that provides due awareness to gender issues, as it aids art therapists in effectively presenting to women its benefits. Hogan, holding impressive credentials in the field of art therapy, is a Senior Lecturer on said subject at the Institute of Health and Community Studies at the University of Derby.
Marzano, Robert, Frontier, Tony, and David Livingston. Effective Supervision – Supporting the Art and Science of Teaching. Alexandria, VA: ASCD, 2011. Print.
This work presents treatises prepared by Marzano, Frontier and Livingston emphasizing the importance of priority-setting and practice-supporting mechanisms on effective school administration based on a framework containing five conditions. Said framework contains the following conditions - expansive teaching bases of knowledge, prospects enabling teachers in practicing teaching strategies, behaviors and feedback-receiving mechanisms, chances engaging teachers towards observation and expertise discussion, the significance of strong success criteria for professional growth and development and appreciation of various development stages for expertise-building. Marzano, Frontier and Livingston structured their five-condition framework on the collegiate context, in turn emphasizing teachers to utilize and apportion strategies for teaching, observe classes of colleagues and absorb teaching-related feedback while improving the overall well-being of students. Marzano is an education research expert who currently runs the Marzano Research Laboratory as CEO and has more than a hundred publications and training expertise under his name. Frontier is the teacher education director of Cardinal Stritch University specializing in organizational learning, curriculum development, statistics and research methods. Livingston is a Marzano Research Laboratory associate focusing on leadership in school and district levels.
Lemov, Doug. Teach Like a Champion: 49 Techniques that Put Students on a Path to College. San Francisco, CA: Wiley, 2010. Print.
This work provides robust techniques for teaching to teachers, particularly those in their early years of teaching, with the aim to make them “classroom champions”. The ease of putting into practice the techniques provided by this work points to their specificity and concreteness. Some of the notable techniques include “No Opt Out” (Technique # 1), which describes the process of leading students away from blank-staring towards constructive class participation, and “Do It Again” (Technique # 35), which encourages students to try performing failed basic tasks in class repetitively towards perfection. Lemov derived the ideas he published in this work from his extensive experience in studying high-ranking teachers in some poverty-stricken public schools in the United States. Moreover, the stint of Lemov at Uncommon Schools enabled him to gather ideas in authoring his other book entitled Practice Perfect.
Marzano, Robert. The Art and Science of Teaching: A Comprehensive Framework for Effective Instruction (1st Ed.). Alexandria, VA: ASCD, 2007. Print.
This work focuses on the difference between designing teaching methods – one based on rigorous research, and utilizing those – one that stands out as more of an art form than a science. Marzano provides a structure that enables educational quality improvement through a steady mix of data coming from research efforts and considerations on the individual capabilities of students. This work notes that the effectiveness of lessons discussed in the classroom relies on the extent in which teachers scrutinize all factors under the teaching process equally. Various kinds of graphic and organizational content make this work a comprehensible manual for teachers in improving their skills towards developing students through designing and properly utilizing teaching methods. Marzano currently stands as the Marzano Research Laboratory CEO and has authored numerous publications and speaking engagements in the field of education.
Gupton, Sandra. The Instructional Leadership Toolbox: A Handbook for Improving Practice (2nd Ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin, 2010. Print.
This work, the second edition authored by Gupton, stands as an instrumental tool for head teachers in their role to improve the quality of education within their schools. There is an understanding provided by this work that head teachers must exercise effective administration in ensuring that the quality of education their schools provide is of the best one; this work delivers concrete methods for head teachers in raising the bar on their system. Gupton duly recognized the importance of stakeholders in guiding the quality of education in schools towards higher levels, as their roles duly characterize the methods this work provides for effective school administration. Present research and theoretical trends in education all help characterize the book as a helpful guide for school administrators. The inclusion of up-to-date National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP) and Interstate School Leaders Licensure Consortium (ISLLC) standards have helped solidify this work as a reliable resource for school administration, alongside the inclusion of innovative research information underlining the role of head teachers in the improvement of student performance. Moreover, this work gives credence to successful cases of methods pertaining to instructional leadership performed by head teachers and other experienced figures in the field of education, alongside useful supplementary resources. Gupton is a University of North Florida Professor specializing in Educational Leadership, with vast professional teaching and leadership experience in North Carolina and Georgia public schools. The author of the book Highly Successful Women Administrators, Gupton has authored several publications emphasizing on instructional leadership.
Gardner, Howard. Creating Minds. New York City, NY: Basic Books, 2011. Print.
Gardner has taken off from his seminal book Frames of Mind in discussing creativity through this work, which incorporates seven influential figures based on his “seven intelligences” concept. The seven influential figures Gardner has cited in this work include Mahatma Gandhi, Albert Einstein, Igor Stravinsky, Sigmund Freud, T. S. Eliot, Martha Graham and Pablo Picasso, each of them representing a specific kind of intelligence included within the concept provided by Gardner. Creativity, as adjudged by this work, focuses on the modern era through the involvement of the foregoing influential figures, all of them being modernist in nature. Patterns pertaining to the creative process emanate from the assessment of each influential figure provided by Gardner. Through the foregoing, Gardner has come to reveal the falsity of a particular form of creativity, yet nevertheless asserted the importance of particular arrangements of personalities and requisites in forming creativity in people. Gardner, overall, has established through this work that unique amalgamations of personalities and intelligences form different kinds of creativity, alongside various effects provided by different situations. Furthermore, Gardner has given strong regard to the importance of protecting any supportive mechanism benefiting creative individuals and the premise that costs underline creativity, depending on intensity. Gardner is a Harvard Graduate School of Education John H. and Elisabeth A. Hobbs Professor of Cognition and Education and a recipient of several awards in the field of psychology and education.
Explanation of Central Themes