Through their focus on children who were successfully learning to read and write despite extraordinary economic hardship, this multiracial team presents new images of the strengths of the family as educator.
Educators and makers of social policy should attend to this study. Its findings refute the stereotype, fed by society and the educational system, of ``disadvantaged'' inner-city children as only marginally capable of mastering depersonalized reading and writing ``skills,'' and also the popular wisdom that makes the assumed failure of these youngsters too often a self-fulfilling prophecy. These children are growing up literate in spite of the odds. The ethnographic descriptions of these families' daily lives illustrate the children's learning experiences within a caring, literate family environment, which is up against an unsupportive outside world. Suzanne W. Wood, SUNY Coll. of Technology, Alfred, N.Y.