From Resurrection to Revolution
Peter McLaren, named Outstanding Educator in America by the Association of Educators of Latin America and the Caribbean in 2013 and winner of numerous awards for his scholarship and international political activism, has penned another classic work with Pedagogy of Insurrection. One of the educators that Ana Maria (Nita) Araújo Freire credits as an architect of what has come to be known worldwide as critical pedagogy, and who Paulo Freire named his ‘intellectual cousin,’ McLaren has consistently produced iconoclastic work that has been heralded by educators worldwide as among some of the most significant commentary on the state of education. He is Honorary President of the Instituto McLaren de Pedagogía Crítica y Educación Popular in Ensenada, México, and Honorary Director of the Center for Critical Pedagogy Research at Northeast Normal University in China.
Chapter 2. Comrade Freire
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It surely is the case that the age which we inhabit so precariously demands manifestos, not desiderata or credos. Unless, of course, those creeds can become manifest as a rallying cry, a canticle for the undead slaves toiling in capitalism’s grim hostelry, forceful enough to be heard beyond the sepulchers and catacombs where schooling, as a proprietary field entombed by its own unforgiving success, has been consigned for all eternity for desecrating the very heart of what it means to live and to learn. It is my wager that words can howl, and on this brittle quiver of hope I set mine into print.
I am in solidarity with today’s youth, the heirs of Spartacus, the Paris Commune, the Levellers, the Diggers, the Ranters, the Zapatistas and the sans-culottes, the orgasms of history whose howls of indignation clash with the ear-shattering silence of the mainstream pedagogical tradition—a tradition that compelled me as a youngster, in baggy denim overalls stained with grease and oil and sporting a jaunty oversized newsboy cap, to keep my eyes squarely focused ahead and my hands folded together on top of my desk as neat as a crisply starched handkerchief and not to trust teachers. All I recall are charts, tables and formulae; wall diagrams and lists—dead letters for the living dead. I had little sympathy in 1959 for teachers. That came much later, in 1965. The countercultural...
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