Learning Environments – Week 10 – Assignment

A little late but here is my response to Paulo Freire’s “Pedagogy of the Opressed”

“In order for this struggle to have meaning, the oppressed must not, in seeking to regain their humanity (which is a way to create it), become in turn oppressors of the oppressors, but rather restorers of the humanity of both” p. 28

The idea that the oppressed become the oppressors is a powerful one and evidenced throughout history. It is actually happening now in Brazil with the workers party which when finally got into power, became corrupt themselves and geared all their efforts to stay in power as opposed to attempting to regain the country’s humanity. “Their ideal is to be a man; but for them, to be man is to be oppressor.” 

Yet the problem is deeper and engrained in the educational system which has been lowering standards to enable children to “progress” within the school system without effectively progressing in learning – similar to the “No Child Left Behind” here in the US. Critical thought must be taught to the students, which implies you must teach the educators to do so as well, or else it simply fails. By lowering standards, you perpetuate an oppressed workforce who is incapable of thinking critically and therefore deprived of a chance for instigating change. 

“The pedagogy of the oppressed is an instrument for their critical discovery that both they and their oppressors are manifestations of dehumanization.” 

“Education as a practice of freedom – as opposed to education as the practice of domination.”