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Pedagogy for Restoration

Addressing Social and Ecological Degradation through Education

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David Krzesni

Pedagogy for Restoration seeks to understand the conditions leading to the destruction of Earth in order to discover pedagogy for restoration. As we degrade the planet we degrade ourselves and as we degrade ourselves we degrade the planet. Moral development and socialization significantly influence our participation in, construction of, or resistance to the systems of oppression that degrade us. The process of restorative education recognizes that humans are fundamentally good and moral and seeks to promote healthy moral development. We must help students meet their basic needs, center their own identities and experience, and simultaneously emphasize community and relationships to help them find a sense of purpose. These efforts facilitate social and ecological restoration by allowing students to reach a physical and emotional place that is conducive to learning and self-efficacy so that they may engage with whatever issues they find important in their own way and on their own terms.
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Chapter 2. Oppression

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·2·

OPPRESSION

Even before I ever read Marx I had made his words my own. (Freire, 1998, p. 115)

In this chapter I attempt to understand, at a structural level, how and why oppression happens. I begin by considering discourses of oppression and the implications of the oppressor-oppressed dichotomy. Next, Marxism is briefly introduced as a central theory on the nature of human oppression and as a foundation upon which to investigate other social theories. Following Marx, I delve into Horkheimer and Adorno’s (1944/2002) critique of the modes of production of knowledge that raises fundamental questions of the relationship between epistemology and oppression. Then ways of knowing in Indigenous and Eastern philosophies are considered in search of a way to proceed beyond the deconstructionism that critical theory inspires. Finally Bookchin’s (1982) theory of human ecology positing that oppression is the result of a departure from nature is investigated. I conclude the chapter by trying to put together social theory, epistemology, and social ecology in order to move beyond an effort to understand the roots of oppression toward an understanding restoration. ← 19 | 20 →

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