In There Are No Children Here

In There Are No Children Here: The Story of Two Boys Growing Up in the Other America, Alex Kotlowitz has written a powerful, sometimes discouraging, sometimes hopeful book, the story of two brothers, Lafayette and Pharoah Rivers, who live in a world of crime, poverty, and little hope for an adequate education which would allow them to escape their dehumanizing circumstances. This study will discuss and evaluate ways suggested by Kotlowitz's book for improving education for disadvantaged children. The outlook is not as hopeful in general for such children as it is for the two brothers, because the author by his personal and financial involvement in their lives and education made them special rather than typical cases. Kotlowitz has given the reader that some hope exists for at least two children, has shed light on some of the problems in the education of the disadvantaged, but he has actually contributed little to the national problem of inadequate schooling for those children who need such schooling the most. At least these two children do have the opportunity to rise above their circumstances, although even that is not assured, but their opportunity is one which few other such children will enjoy. Kotlowitz' book is more a personal journey into the lives of the people in the inner city, including many wonderful and horrible discoveries, but it is in no way a serious examination of the possible solutions for solving the educational needs of the children of the inner city.



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