Ideas: The "Power" Civics Curriculum, For Kids & Adults
Want to make civics interesting and popular again, Justice O'Connor and others? Forget telling us how important the topic is. Instead, says former Clinton deputy domestic policy advisor Eric Liu, make it sexy and violent, like the TV show Game Of Thrones. Writes Liu in The Atlantic:
"Imagine a curriculum that taught students how to be powerful -- not only to feel empowered but to be fluent in the language of power and facile in its exercise.... How to see the underlying power dynamics beneath every public controversy. How to read the power map of any community... There is a secret curriculum that explains how stuff actually gets done in America. In a democracy, that knowledge should be democratized."
Actually, now that I think about it, plenty of school reformers and educators would do well to learn Liu's version of power civics. They'd learn that power comes in many forms, that there are limits to the power and influence of their opponents (whom they often imagine as all powerful), etc.