“Pedagogy Of The Oppressed” by Paula Freire was very dense. I read it about three times, and I still feel like I haven’t grasped the concept entirely. Freire begins by revealing humankind’s central problem, which he says is humanization. Concern for humanization leads to the topic of dehumanization, which is always interconnected.
Freire states that humanization and dehumanization are both possible for humans. Though most of us strive to be humanized, it is challenging because of our unjust, oppressed, and exploited society. People are continually trying to fight oppression, in turn, dehumanizing the oppressed people. The oppressed begin to act like the oppressors themselves because that is their model of humanity. This then becomes the most significant task of all to liberate themselves and their oppressors.
The oppressed have to lead their own journey to become unoppressed. Often though, it is the fear of freedom that gets in the way. The oppressors have long influenced the oppressed, making them adopt to their behaviors. True freedom then requires them to replace this image and replace it with autonomy and responsibility. To overcome this situation, people must recognize the causes so they can transform the situation and create a new reality. However, they continuously fail because of their fear of the greater repression. Conformity then becomes a haven. This is the tragic reality of the oppressed, but Freire says we must take into account their education.
That’s when the term pedagogy of the oppressed takes to play. Questioning how the oppressed can participate in developing the pedagogy of their liberation? The pedagogy of the oppressed is an instrument for the critical discovery of oppression, to help the people change the course. In order for the oppressed to become liberated, they must not look at the world as a place for no freedom, but as a limiting situation where change is possible. They need to realize that the oppressor does not exist without them. And that an oppressor is also just a person who has to been oppressed at some point. Real solidarity is found through this act of love. One of the most significant obstacles in achieving liberation is that oppressive reality absorbs those within it and sinks human beings’ consciousness.
The change can only take place then, utilizing praxis, reflection, and action. These elements all depend on each other and must be done as a whole to achieve freedom. The more people unveil this situation, the more critically they enter this realm of change. The pedagogy of oppressed then is to restore humanity. There are two stages, the first stage deals with the problem of the consciousness of the oppressed and the oppressor. The oppressors exploit violence by doing the oppressing and also not recognizing that they are creating this violence. The act of love can be found through this violence; because the oppressors are trying to restore all humanity.
Oppressors care about power, and they do not have it without the oppressed. They want more at the cost of others having nothing, and they possess humanity as a property. The peasant beings to gain the courage to overcome his dependence when he realized he is dependent. They have to stop thinking they are powerless to the oppressor who makes all the rules; they must stop depending on him. To achieve liberation, people must trust others who are in the same situation. They must recognize the dependence and transform it into independence. They must work with the people, with their knowledge and experience of oppression, to achieve true liberation.
WELL THANK GOD THAT’S OVER WITH!!!
Lisa Delpit’s “The Silenced Dialogue” begins with short anecdotes from Black and Native American educators who feel they are expected to teach minority students using methods and styles which are not effective. These teachers of color feel unheard and silenced. Likewise, the White educators also wish to express their opinion on the topic but feel left out. Delpit calls this issue the “culture of power” that exists in education today.
First, Delpit notes that teachers, curriculum developers, state mandates have power over students. Second, she said there are codes for participating in power, including ways of talking, writing, dressing, and interacting. Thrid, she mentions that children from middle and upper-class families do better in school because the culture of the school is based on those in power. Fourth, she says power is acquirable if told the rules of the culture explicitly. Fifth, most importantly, she discusses that people in power are less likely to acknowledge it vs. the people with no control are possible to recognize it.
Delpit’s article is jarring. It is new; it’s an aspect of education I have never fought. I might have subliminally gave it a smidge of thought but nothing more. Children who already participants in the culture of power will succeed, but it is the lack of attention to other communities, in this instance, the black community. Parents of non-white communities transmit another culture that children must learn at home to survive in their communities. As one parent demanded, “my kids know how to be Black- you call to teach them how to be successful in the White man’s world. This quote reminds me of an instant in my teaching career when I was teaching in a Black community with most children coming from the projects. One day a girl came in and held a knife to another child’s neck. She demanded him to give up the white-colored laptop because that’s the one she wanted. I was appalled by such behavior, but I did not want to report her, I tried to protect her because I knew how she grew up, and this was normal for her. However, after much contemplation, I did report it. The child was taken to the police station, where the mother admitted she gave her the knife herself to protect herself. This little anecdote goes hand in hand with the statement made earlier, where parents are preparing their children to survive in their own communities.
The teacher and student must both be in power for ultimate success. For the Black community, power is looked at differently. They give into authority when it is acquired; this does not mean because someone has an authoritative role, they possess it. Delpit acknowledges that there is a culture of power, and everyone should learn the codes but in a diversity of style.