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Framing the Conversation: Social Studies Education and the Neoconservative Agenda

This article analyzes the tactics used by the Neoconservatives in the book Where Did Social Studies Go Wrong? (WDSSGW) to influence the reform of social studies education in the U.S. The editors of WDSSGW attribute the demise of social studies in the country to what they call as superficial issues, such as peace studies, gender equity issues and multiculturalism. How can the editors call these issues superficial? Although minimal, the educators have managed to made some inroads in schools and classrooms. By using the book, the Neoconservatives are planning to attack the U.S. social studies education. In the book, they have used labels and accusations, such as intellectual elite, ignorant activists and antipatriotic, which they have used many times before. And each evokes unflattering images that are emblazoned on the citizenry's collective consciousness.

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