The War against People: Adult education practice for critical democracy

Connolly, Brid and Hussey, Peter (2013) The War against People: Adult education practice for critical democracy. The Adult Learner, 1. pp. 76-89. ISSN 0790-8040

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The purpose of this article is to explore the role of adult education for critical democracy, in order to address the social suffering (Bourdieu, 1999) that we encounter in our work as critical adult community educators. We explore this through dialogue, as a process of education and research. Dialogue is the moment where humans meet to reflect on their reality as they make and remake it (Shor, Freire, 1987: 13). The purpose of dialogue is to transform social relations, in the learning environment and in our community of practice, a key way of creating new knowledge. Also, we contend that dialogue is a process of joint autoethnographic research that examines experience, in order to understand cultural practices, (Ellis, et al , 2011). Further, congruent with our pedagogies, autoethnography treats research as a political, socially-just and socially-conscious act (Adams and Holman Jones, 2008). This article developed out of dialogue that we have had for years, but which we formalised only recently. We consider dialogue as a pivot, based on Freire’s contention that education is a conversation rather than a curriculum (1972). Further, our dialogue is underpinned by reflexivity, particularly using ourselves in research and practice (Etherington, 2004). Reflexivity remains in the domain of the academic if we are not mindful that our purpose is to change the world, echoing Marx and Engles’ thesis that: The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways; the point is, however, to change it,. (Thesis 11, 1845)

Item Type: Article
Keywords: War against People; Adult education practice; critical democracy;
Academic Unit: Faculty of Social Sciences > Adult and Community Education
Item ID: 4778
Depositing User: Brid Connolly
Date Deposited: 24 Feb 2014 12:02
Journal or Publication Title: The Adult Learner
Publisher: AONTAS or the Adult Education Officers’ Association
Refereed: Yes

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