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Jsl Vol 15-N3

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The Journal of School Leadership is broadening the conversation about schools and leadership and is currently accepting manuscripts. We welcome manuscripts based on cutting-edge research from a wide variety of theoretical perspectives and methodological orientations. The editorial team is particularly interested in working with international authors, authors from traditionally marginalized populations, and in work that is relevant to practitioners around the world. Growing numbers of educators and professors look to the six bimonthly issues to: deal with problems directly related to contemporary school leadership practice teach courses on school leadership and policy use as a quality reference in writing articles about school leadership and improvement.

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Guest Editor's Introduction: Edu-tainment: Popular Culture in the Making of Schools for the 21st Century

ePub

CHARLES P. GAUSE

As we head into the 21st century, rap music/hip-hop is in the earth-wide sound stream, the child of soul, R & B and rock n roll, the by-product of the strategic marketing of Big Business, ready to pulse out to the millions on the wild, wild web. It's difficult to stop a cultural revolution that bridges people together.

—Chuck D, The Sound of Our Young World

Popular culture is the very sea of our existence. It is often contextualized in terms of the “music of the day” or “music of the generation.” From that perspective let us just for a moment entertain the thought of rap music. Rap music, in its brief history, has been coded as the “voice” of the urban African American male whose desire is to express his manhood and disrupt society. Hip-hop culture and rap music as an art form, which began as a contemporary form of African American expression, has emerged as an articulation of a culturally specific art form in a dominant cultural context. Initially, its popularity and global impact or hybridity positioned it as a counter-hegemonic musical medium with counter-narratives to dominator culture—although presently this is no longer true.

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U.S. Preservice Teachers and Their Media Worlds

ePub

STEPHANIE A. FLORES-KOULISH

ABSTRACT: This study provides a baseline of experiences and understandings that undergraduate elementary preservice teachers have with media and popular culture. Through a qualitative investigation, future teachers reveal their childhood and current media habits. What also emerges is a glimpse of their future pedagogical skills related to the media as a subject matter. Additionally, these preservice teachers express fear over the power of the media, with particular indignation when it comes to children as viewers. Implications for policy in teacher education related to media literacy education are discussed.

In 1999, 48 out of 50 U.S. states’ curricular frameworks included elements of media literacy (Kubey & Baker, 1999)—“the ability to access, analyze, evaluate, and produce both print and electronic media” (Aufderheide, 1992). Media here comprise television, radio, Internet, film, newspapers, and advertisements. The need to produce media and understand them better presents itself because in 1999 the average U.S. citizen spends 9.2 hours each day engaged in media information/entertainment (Veronis-Suhler Associates). Some researchers claim that Americans absorb even higher levels of media than has been previously documented (Center for Media Design, 2004).

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Critically Reading Race on Television: Implications for Leadership Toward Democratic Education

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WILLIAM GAUDELLI

Critically Reading Race on Television: Implications for Leadership Toward Democratic Education

ABSTRACT: Media, particularly television, are increasingly prevalent in contemporary life and yet the pedagogical potential of this resource remains largely untapped. Racism, insidious in its manifestations, is frequently the subject of media spectacle that tends to fixate, frame, and fracture discourse about this vital issue. This study1 examines how three focus groups of high school students interpreted race as it was depicted in a televised town meeting following a brutal hate crime. Data drawn from transcription and analysis of student dialogue are situated around three themes: insolubility of racism, racial affiliation, and individualism. Implications are drawn from these findings and situated within a particular view of a democratic society, one rooted in developing the critical capacity of autonomous individuals, the shared intercourse of ideas, the ability to communicate those ideas freely and to diverse populations, the commitment to a shared public ethic, and a movement toward a society of judging actors. Processes are considered for educational leaders intent on reading visual media toward democratic ends.

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Turn Up That Radio, Teacher: Popular Cultural Pedagogy in New Century Urban Schools

ePub

JEFFREY M. R. DUNCAN-ANDRADE
ERNEST MORRELL

ABSTRACT: Synthesizing literature from critical pedagogy, sociocultural psychology, and cultural studies with popular cultural texts and experiences from actual classroom practice, this article conceptualizes the critical teaching of popular culture as a viable strategy to increase academic and critical literacies in urban secondary classrooms. Relying on scholarship that views youth popular culture as a powerful, but often times underutilized, point of intervention for schools, these authors discuss the impact of using youth popular culture to reconnect with otherwise disenfranchised schooling populations. The authors rebut criticisms associated with the teaching of popular culture by showing how teachers can simultaneously honor and draw upon the sociocultural practices of their students while also adhering to state and national standards. Further, the article demonstrates the social relevance, academic worthiness, and intellectual merit of hip-hop artists such as the controversial Eminem and popular film texts such as the Godfather trilogy. They conclude with a call for postmodern critical educational leaders—vigilant advocates for students who are willing to combine academic content knowledge with a commitment to an engaging multicultural curriculum.

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The Inner Life of Transformation: A Philosophic Investigation of Leadership, Media, Justice, and Freedom

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GLENN M. HUDAK

ABSTRACT: This article investigates the philosophical terrain of transformational leadership by first providing a phenomenology of school leadership within the context of a media-saturated environment. Second, the article investigates transformational leadership by comparing and contrasting leadership in Plato's Republic with leadership in postmodern America.

We live in an age of “transformation” where freedom to transform ourselves has become a cultural preoccupation at the expense of justice. As such, it is no mere coincidence that “transformation” should also become a prominent conceptual feature in leadership theory. This is not to suggest that research into transformational leadership is misguided. Rather, in this study I will focus on the construction of “transformation” within the contemporary social context, and especially within the context of the postmodern media environment. In my investigation I will differentiate between transformation that speaks primarily to our organizational needs—needs that pertain to our work lives—and “inner” transformation, transformation that awakens not only our inner, psychic, and spiritual lives but, more so, our moral impulse for justice. My aim is to bring into “ecological” balance the realities of our work lives with the necessities of our inner lives as they pertain to a meaningful process of transformation. Indeed, it is my contention that while noteworthy leadership studies address the importance of transformation within the organizational contexts of schools (e.g., Bennis, 1984; Burns, 1978; Quantz, Rogers, & Dantley, 1991), without proper attention to the inner life of transformation, our social, political, and organizational efforts may, in fact, be colluding with the dominant ideology rather than providing an oppositional frame that sets the stage to transform injustice to justice.

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Navigating Stormy Seas: Critical Perspectives on the Intersection of Popular Culture and Educational Leader-“Ship”

ePub

CHARLES P. GAUSE

ABSTRACT: This article, utilizing a postmodern mediated cultural framework, critically situates the sociopolitical context of public education within the constructs of a lost ship at sea. Seeking to rupture false assumptions of popular culture and its impact on the learning community, I further explore critical possibilities regarding the intersection of popular culture and educational leader-“ship.”

Entering Case Junior-Senior High School in December 2000, I witnessed a multiethnic population of students, including African Americans, Appalachians, whites, Hispanics, and biracial students, listening to and performing the latest dance moves they witnessed on BET, MTV, and VH-1. The style of clothing clearly was taken from the latest hip-hop designers’ lines and labels. Sean John, FUBU, and Ecko were visibly seen in all colors, with the guys wearing their oversized pants hanging from their hips, revealing the label and names of their choice boxers (underwear), and their “Tims” (Timberland Boots) unlaced. As I listened to several teachers discussing the students on that day, one statement echoed above many: “If they stop listening to that ‘rap’ maybe they could learn something and stop being so disrespectful.” My thoughts went back to lines from Public Enemy, Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five, and other rap artists I listened to “back in the day,” and I wanted to say, “I listened to rap as a kid and I turned out fine, so what is really the problem?” (Gause, 2001, pp. 13–14). The following personal reflection from my dissertation (Gause, 2001) laid the foundation for this project and oftentimes served as a lighthouse during those moments when I felt as if I were lost at sea.

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