Educating the Black Child: "Ebonic Hysteria" Dr. Asa G. Hillard

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Asa G. Hilliard, III Papers

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This video recording consists of a presentation delivered by Dr. Asa G. Hilliard, III at the Southeast Regional Conference on Educating Black Children, held 31 January-2 February 1997 at The Harvey Hotel in Jackson, Mississippi. The conference’s title was “Excellence without Excuse: Educating All Children.” Dr. Hilliard’s presentation, titled “Ebonic Hysteria,” criticizes media and scholarly reaction to Oakland (California) Unified School District’s resolution, adopted in December 1996, to recognize the legitimacy of Ebonics as a spoken language. Hilliard argues that the reaction did not recognize the actual content of the Oakland resolution, and he asserts that most commentators have taken stances based on ignorance of linguistics and of the school district’s policy. He questions the motivations of those involved in the controversy, which he labels “Ebonhysteria.”

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