October 9, 2012
Kozol Reaction/Analysis Paper
After reading Jonathan Kozol’s Amazing Grace, two main topics stood out to me. The first topic that stood out to me was power and the affects of power. The second topic that stood out to me was the major socio-economic class differences that exist between the rich and the poor. Using the course reading from Miller and the two course readings from Mantsios, I will further analyze and examine these two topics from Kozol’s Amazing Grace.
To begin, let’s see how Kozol’s Amazing Grace relates to Jean Baker Miller’s “Domination and Subordination”. Miller focuses on dominance and subordinates and how the dominants are the superior ones with all of the open power and authority and the ones who determine the ways in which power may be acceptably used (Miller, 112). She refers to subordinates as inferior and powerless and the group that has to concentrate on basic survival (Miller, 113). The dominant ones in Amazing Grace are the political leaders of New York City because they are the ones with all the wealth. For example, Mayor Rudolph Giuliani plans to cut back sanitation and inspection services and programs for children and teenagers as well as a variety of other services relied on by poor people such as drug-rehabilitation programs, programs that help hungry families in obtaining food, and the cancellation of AIDS services to 600 children and 16,000 adults (Kozol, 100). When one has all the power in their hands, they can control economic and social situations and put it in their favor just like the political leaders of New York City did. They used the cuts to create a $150 million dollar school in the rich area and to build a prison. The poor, being so powerless that they are, have no other choice but to accept it. They are expected to “look at what is there and take advantage of it” (Kozol, 101), when in reality nothing is there for the poor to take advantage of. The...