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NCTE Position Statement

Resolution on the Smithsonian Institute

1994 NCTE Annual Business Meeting in Orlando, Florida


The members who proposed this resolution believe that the Smithsonian Institution, a public repository of American history and culture, has ignored the Latino population of the United States in terms of its mission in research, education, publication, and cultural representation. The failure to investigate, collect, conserve, and display significant contributions of Latino culture, they said, deprives the public of a complete and accurate portrayal of American history and culture.

The proposers noted that the Latino culture is the largest language minority group in the United States, numbering 22,000,000 people. Latinos have figured prominently in the identity of America throughout its history, they continued, and in its economic and social development. Be it therefore


Resolved, that the National Council of Teachers of English communicate our concerns as teachers about the egregious omission of Latino culture and history from the Smithsonian Institution;

     that NCTE encourage the Smithsonian Institution to represent American history and culture completely and accurately by illuminating the significant contributions of Latinos;

     that NCTE urge the Smithsonian Institution to use the Latino population as its resource to ensure the authenticity of its inclusions; and

     that NCTE widely publish this resolution to its members, affiliates, and other professional organizations through publications and news releases.

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