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Pedagogy Of The Oppressed
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Schiefelbein, Stacey 99084969

October 2005

Article Summary

 

Pedagogy Of The Oppressed

Paulo Freire

 

            Has it ever crossed your mind that maybe our education system may be leading us to become lifeless, creative-less individuals? Teachers are taking life and taking the life out of it. They are trying to teach life but the approach is disconnecting reality by turning the learning situation into a narrative essay. Words that we used to use make life colorful are now white noise. The narrative essay in which today’s teachers seems to be their preferred method of choice. This learning style forces the students to memorize and store the information like a container being filled with a substance. Simply a storage unit, where it can be taken out when later needed. Rather than having a two way communication learning style between the teacher and students, the teacher force feeds the students the information at a rapid speed so that they can move to the next topic.

            “Knowledge is a gift bestowed by those who consider themselves knowledgeable upon those whom they consider to know nothing.” That quote in the article hits the hammer on the head of the nail. The teacher- student relationship is the same way; the teacher knows everything and the students don’t know anything. They made some very good examples that I will directly use from the article in a list below:

  • The teacher teaches and the students are taught
  • The teacher knows everything and the students know nothing
  • The teacher thinks and the students are thought about
  •  The teacher speaks and the students listen…meekly
  • The teacher disciplines and the students are disciplined
  • The teacher chooses and enforces his choice, and the students comply
  • The teacher acts and the students have the illusion of acting through the action of the teacher
  •   The teacher chooses the program content, and the students (who were not consulted) adapt to it
  • The teacher confuses the authority of knowledge with his or her own professional authority, which she and he sets in the opposition to the freedom of the students.
  • The teacher is the Subject of the learning process while the pupils are mere objects.

 The perfect student is one that complies with all the above, and follows the very specific formula and doesn’t think for themselves. Hello, look at our government. The more teachers can oppress their students, the easier they can dominate them and have them work for them as if they were puppets. Sometimes it works, and sometimes students figure out exactly what is going on and break out and challenge the teachers and dominate them.

            Oppression is an overwhelming control that is fed off the love of death and not by life. Oppression, is like “the root of all evil”, if I may say. It controls everything we do, in a negative way, or in a controlled way. Education has decided that that is the way that they wish to “run the world” because according to them there is one specific formula for success.  Those who run against our education system win my vote. But to be able to that they have to be willing to be very liberal and few us as not conscious beings of the world, but being conscious that we are conscious of ourselves. We must use creativity, and be critical analyzers to challenge ourselves as well as the educators, that in a way are brain washing us and turning us into life-less, robot like creatures.

            Problem posing education focuses on creativity and stimulates our brains. I think it forces us to think. It changes the perspective of the world compared to those that are in a banking education situation. It makes us teach ourselves and our educators. There is no specific formula, just the one that works best for you. It also helps with awareness because you are the one making the decisions, not the teachers for you.

            The thesis of Freire’s article is that of his key points I listed above directly from the article: The teacher teaches and the students are taught, the teacher knows everything and the students know nothing, the teacher thinks and the students are thought about

 the teacher speaks and the students listen…meekly, the teacher disciplines and the students are disciplined, the teacher chooses and enforces his choice, and the students comply, the teacher acts and the students have the illusion of acting through the action of the teacher,  The teacher chooses the program content, and the students (who were not consulted) adapt to it, the teacher confuses the authority of knowledge with his or her own professional authority, which she and he sets in the opposition to the freedom of the students, the teacher is the Subject of the learning process while the pupils are mere objects. This is honestly how the United States education program is being ran, and it is scary, but for the few that realize what a flipping joke the banking system is they are the ones breaking the mold and making a difference.

 

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Stacey Schiefelbein