Tuesday, January 5, 2010

t r u t h o u t | Rethinking Education as the Practice of Freedom: Paulo Freire and the Promise of Critical Pedagogy

Paulo Freire has been an inspiration to me and his theory has underpinned and informed my work in my roles as educator and midwife ever since I first read his book "Pedagogy of the Oppressed". This respectful, thought provoking, beautifully written article "Rethinking Education as the Practice of Freedom: Paulo Freire and the Promise of Critical Pedagogy" by Henry A. Giroux, provides an inspiring lens on the most amazing educational theorist ever to grace this earth.

Giroux says, about Freire:

Occupying the often difficult space between existing politics and the as yet possible, Paulo Freire spent most of his life working in the belief that the radical elements of democracy are worth struggling for, that critical education is a basic element of social change and that how we think about politics is inseparable from how we come to understand the world, power and the moral life we aspire to lead. In many ways, Paulo embodied the important but often problematic relationship between the personal and the political. His own life was a testimonial not only to his belief in democracy, but also to the notion that one's life had to come as close as possible to modeling the social relations and experiences that spoke to a more humane and democratic future. At the same time, Paulo never moralized about politics, never employed the discourse of shame or collapsed the political into the personal when talking about social issues. For him, private problems had to be understood in relation to larger public issues. Everything about him suggested that the first order of politics was humility, compassion and a willingness to fight against human injustices.


For anyone who cares about education, liberation and personal mastery, this article is a must read.

t r u t h o u t | Rethinking Education as the Practice of Freedom: Paulo Freire and the Promise of Critical Pedagogy

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