Lisa Delpit looks at the effects of social and economic power in education and how important it is for teachers to take into account the culture of children. She strongly believes that teachers need to teach the rules and codes of power to students who may not learn the rules and codes at home. She says, "to deny students their own expert knowledge is to disempower them" (33). She provides examples of teachers who do not take into consideration the different styles children, from less privileged homes, display during interacting and relating to class material. Delpit also argues that underprivileged students must learn how to succeed without abandoning their culture.
- "Issues of power enacted in classrooms"
- "The codes or rules for participating in power"
- "The culture of power are a reflection of the rules of the culture of those who have power"
- "If you are not already a participant in the culture of power, being told explicitly the rules of that culture makes acquiring power easier"
- "Those with power are frequently least aware of its existence, those with less power are often most aware of its existence"
It is important not to abandon a child's primary language in order to not destroy them. Delpit says to support the language the students bring to schools and provide the "code" for English. Children from diverse backgrounds might not approach education the same way a white child may. This results in teachers having to be creative in order to teach children with differing learning styles who think and learn in different ways. Like Anthony Mariorenzi says, "people who hold a position of power may not use and those who have no power are aware of where they stand within society. In conclusion Delpit feels that all students must be explicitly taught the rules and codes of power to achieve a better society." For many students who speak another language and learn to speak Standard English is gaining access to the culture of power. Delpit believes "because there is a culture of power, everyone should learn the codes to participate in it, and that is how the world should be" (39).