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Framing Peace

Thinking about and Enacting Curriculum as «Radical Hope»

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Hans Smits and Rahat Naqvi

The language of frames suggests the need to rethink self and other in fostering ethical relationships as a foundation for peaceful existence. Educational writers and practitioners from many parts of the world, including New York, Denver, Minneapolis, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Israel, and Canada offer their perspectives on peace as an aim of curriculum.
Possibilities for learning about peace conceived in terms of Jonathan Lear’s (2006) notion of «radical hope» are illustrated in the contexts of diverse settings and challenges: the aftermath of apartheid in South Africa, re-imagining post-colonial history curricula in Zimbabwe, exploring the meanings of truth and reconciliation and restorative justice in Canada, examining the quality of pedagogic relationships in elementary school classrooms, attending to experiences of gay and lesbian students in schools, experiences of marginalized students, children’s experiences of civic engagement, Islamophobia in high schools and teacher education classes, fraught relationships between Palestinian and Jewish students in a teachers’ college in Israel, and the inclusion of First Nations culture and knowledge in Canadian teacher education classes. As whole and in each of its parts, Framing Peace encourages us to think about peace as an urgent and fundamental responsibility of curriculum at all levels of education.

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Case Study: How Do We Educate So “That the People of This Precious Earth … May Live”? Rethinking the History Curriculum in Zimbabwe

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Case Study How do We Educate So “That the People of This Precious Earth … May Live”? Rethinking the History Curriculum in Zimbabwe nathan moyo and maropeng modiba i n t r o d u c t i o n This case study examines the legacy of violence and polarized racial, ethnic, and political identities in Zimbabwe1 in order to reimagine the ways in which the school history curriculum can be reenacted as a pedagogy of hope and healing as a means of transcending an embittered past. It is born out of concern with those left behind, with indelible memories of a wounded past and how con- fronting this past can, through the medium of school history, move the young generations to transcend the dark episodic years in the history of our country.2 We draw on Judith Butler’s (2009) notion of “frames of peace” to reimagine the trajectory of violence and conflict that bedevil the country to understand the ways in which sections of the population are, to use Butler’s terms, perceived to be “worthy of protection” (p. 18) while others are cast as “destructible” and “ungrievable” and therefore “lose-able” (p. 31). The challenge for Zimbabwe is how to engage with the historical past and present, no matter how shameful, in ways that make “violence less possible, lives more equally grievable, and hence, more livable’” (Butler 2009, p. viii). It is precisely this that Jardine (1998), citing Fox (1983, p. 9), has in mind when he enjoins us to “live and...

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