New PDF release: Becoming Somebody: Toward A Social Psychology Of School

By Philip Wexler

First released in 1992. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa corporation.

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And they’ve got the whole gossip on you when you’re here one day out of the whole year. It’s gossip, gossip, gossip. They’re talking about you or telling you what to do, and not doing it with you’—relationally. Student: Everybody’s always yelling at you: ‘Grow up! Do this! ’. And you’re tryin’ and everybody’s always yellin’ at you, and you’re tryin’ and not all of it’s working out, and they’ll get on your throat because it’s not working out the way that they want it—they jump down your throat for that which—they don’t have no right, because they push all this shit on us.

The disciplinary apparatus has not provided the fuel for respect or altered the way of relating that turns teachers off from their students. Teacher: I don’t appreciate being wild. I don’t appreciate not knowing how to come into a room—like some of the little things. Instead of knocking on a door when you want to come in, they will kick the door for no reason or they’ll walk up and down the hall and every window gets pounded on. I mean to me that’s anti-social…and it continues… When I started out teaching, I couldn’t spend enough time in the classroom.

Teacher: I come from a family which is primarily workingclass people…. I come from an immigrant family. I was the first person in my family to graduate from high school. So there’s a lot of personal, psychic reward for me being a teacher…. I came into the world of education feeling pretty good about the fact that I have succeeded…. So I don’t feel that this is below me… Yet I find that there may be millions and millions of teachers out there who don’t think that teachers are—you know, its no longer the honorable profession that it was.

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