Like many ed-studies graduate students, Robert Pondiscio of the Core Knowledge Blog read Brazilian theorist Paolo Freire’s canonical book Pedagogy of the Oppressed in school. The work—which opposes the “banking” concept of teaching—has long been held up as a must-read for educators, but a recent City Journal article by Sol Stern has Pondiscio thinking about why that is.
Sol Stern examines the curious case of Freire and asks how his “derivative, unscholarly book about oppression, class struggle, the depredations of capitalism, and the need for revolution ever gets confused with a treatise on education that might help solve the problems of twenty-first-century American inner-city schools?” For starters, Stern says Freire’s seeds were cast upon fertile soil.
Pondiscio’s entry makes for a good read, but the debates that ensued between the author and the blog’s commenters (including teacher-leader blogger Nancy Flanagan) are equally informative and bring up interesting points about the merits of Freire’s theories.
A version of this news article first appeared in the Blogboard blog.