In Education and Power, the first chapter,
"Reproduction, Contestation, and Curriculum," Dr. Apple sets
the stage by alerting us to the economic crisis at hand and especially
points out that whenever groups of people struggle over issues
of gender, race, and class, the economy, as well as the entire
social process is affected.
He stresses the salary gap between men and women
and the fact that African Americans and Hispanics have a higher
"What of other groups? The black and Hispanic
populations of the United States have much higher rates of under-and
unemployment than others, rates that will significantly increase
in the near future."
The educational and cultural system is a variable
that dictates the maintenance of the existing domination and exploitation
in the social order. This critical theorist suggests that too
much attention is given to schools when in essence the problem
is part of a larger framework of social relations as it relates
to cultural reproduction.
In another section of Chapter 1, "Reproduction,
Contestation, and Curriculum," in Education and Power,
the writer explains how "it has become increasingly obvious over
this same time period that our educational institutions may serve
less as the engines of democracy and equality than many of us
One can examine schools to find out how they
assist individuals to get ahead and what kinds of people actually
get ahead in our attempt to alleviate some of the problems facing
individual students and others. Social patterns and outcomes may
inform us how the school functions in reproduction, a function
that may well be hidden if our individual acts of helping remain
our primary focus.
What do we mean when we look at how schools "function"
to reproduce an unequal society? The term refers to a society's
fundamental relations that enable society to reproduce itself
again but only in the form a dominant and subordinate social order.