This article appeared in The Textbook Letter for March-April
1999. It accompanied a review of Sandra Stotsky's book
Losing Our Language: How Multicultural Classroom Instruction Is
Undermining Our Children's Ability to Read, Write, and Reason.

Losing Our Science

William J. Bennetta

In Losing Our Language, Sandra Stotsky makes this comment on today's basal readers: "Stories about the great achievements in American science, technology, and political life in the past 200 years are missing -- and they are missing, it seems, simply because a story about them would call attention to a white male."

Such perversity isn't unique to basal readers. The falsification of the history of science and technology can be seen in many other schoolbooks, including multi-culti history books and multi-culti science books. To the greatest practical extent, the writers shun any mention of scientific and technological innovations, no matter how important, if those innovations were achieved by white males. When such innovations must be mentioned, they typically are presented not as products of human effort but as things of unknown origin -- things that simply appeared out of nowhere.

Concomitantly, the writers of multi-culti books contrive phony material in which great scientific and technological feats are ascribed to women, to blacks, or to Amerindians. For example:

These are only a few examples, but they suffice to show how some schoolbook-writers, devoted to multi-culti indoctrination, systematically promote illusory visions of the history of science and technology. The writers ignore or misrepresent first-rate scientific and technological achievements, they ignore or misrepresent first-rate scientists and technologists, they project a false impression of "science," loaded with glorified trifles and irrelevant junk, and they contrive "science" that is wholly phony.

William J. Bennetta is a professional editor, a fellow of the California Academy of Sciences, the president of The Textbook League, and the editor of The Textbook Letter. He writes often about the propagation of quackery, false "science" and false "history" in schoolbooks.


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