Paulo Freire, ‘Pedagogy of the Oppressed’ (1968)
1. What does Paulo Freire mean when using the following terms: “oppressed,” “oppressors;” “humanization,” “dehumanization,”? (p.43-44).
(Answer the question in your own words. Also find examples in the text).
2. Why does Freire think that the “struggle for humanization [for humanity]” is “possible”? Why is it worth fighting for? And what according to Freire is necessary for “…this struggle to have meaning…”? How might you describe his ethics for society? (p.44).
(Find examples in the text to support your answers).
3. Why does Freire argue that “…almost always, during the initial stage of the struggle, the oppressed, instead of striving for liberation, tend themselves to become oppressors, or “sub-oppressors”? What does he mean? (Also, think about Brazil, and what this might mean in its historical context? Who would the “sub-oppressors” be in Brazil’s history?) (45-46).
(Again, find examples in the text).
4. What does Freire mean by the term, a, ”fear of freedom”? What and who is he referring to? (p46-48). (*also, see the‘footnote’ on page 46).
(Answer the question in your own words, and find examples in the text to support your points).
5. How does Freire define the “pedagogy of the oppressed”? What does he mean by the concept? And also, what is its central obstacle, or “problem,” moving forward in the struggle for liberation? (48).
(Find examples in the text).
6. What does Freire mean by the following statement: “Education is suffering from narration sickness”? How does the statement relate to education, and also to the teacher-student relationship according to Freire? (71).
7. Very importantly, what is the “banking concept of education”? What does Freire mean by this concept? (72-76).
8. And also, against this model of education, what does Freire mean by the terms, “solidarity,” “communication,” and “authentic thinking” on the final page of your reading? According to Freire, how and why are these concepts necessary for a more liberating form of education?
9. Can you think of any connections between Freire’s ideas and the other readings in the course, up until now?
10. And finally, think about the world today. How might Freire’s ideas relate to the ethics of our contemporary society? Who are the oppressors? Who are the oppressed? And also, more specifically, think about his “pedagogy of the oppressed,” in relation to current struggles for liberation and humanization (human and civil rights). These might include, ‘Black Lives Matter;’ ‘The 1619 Project,’ and/or others.
In your own words, think critically about the question and the world today
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