"Canon y Cálculo: Jaime Escalante, Richard Rodriguez y el discurso educativo latino entre asimilación y diferencia cultural."
The Mexican American writer Richard Rodríguez and the now retired Bolivian mathematics teacher Jaime Escalante are two of the most significant figures in public discourses about the situation of Latina/os in the United States educational system. Their positions have crucially informed the educational political debates about affirmative action and bilingual education in the 1980s and ‘90s far beyond educational political circles and the Latina/o community at issue. Rodríguez became famous for his autobiography Hunger of Memory: The Education of Richard Rodriguez (1981) and Escalante for his work with minority students in the California public schoolsystem, which was brought to a larger public through the screen biography Stand and Deliver (1988). To different degrees, though, both men stirred controversy for advocating Latina/o assimilation to AngloAmerican educational norms. The essay looks at Hunger of Memory and Stand and Deliver in the context of the public discourses on Latina/o education in the United States during the 1980s and ‘90s and also examines how Rodríguez and Escalante have be come public actors in the larger national controversies over bilingual education, affirmative action,the ideal of multiculturalism, and Latina/o identity politics.