Paulo Freire’s Pedagogy Of The Oppressed Research Paper

Nina Wallerstein and Ira Shor’s articles both provide wonderful summary and analysis of the concepts found in Paulo Freire’s Pedagogy of the Oppressed. The articles include analysis and suggestions of classroom application for terms such as problem posing, liberation, and critical consciousness. Freire stresses the need for love and faith in teachers, he advocates for a learning system that encourages critical thinking, examination of the learning-process and society, instead of being a “delivery [system] for lifeless bodies of knowledge” (Shor, 25). Freirean classrooms would also “pose problems derived from student life, social issues and academic subjects it a mutually created dialogue.” (Shor, 25). Both Wallerstein and Shor suggest means…

The first stage in Wallerstein’s ideas is Listening. Through on-going listening an educator may uncover the “hidden voices” and emotions of their students, which can give them important insight into their students lives (Wallerstein, 35). Educators must listen both inside and outside of class to get a full understanding of students. Within the classroom one must acknowledge what makes each student react in different ways and outside one should always have ears and eyes open to observe through observation, interview and document analysis. In Dialogue, is the process of putting issues identified by listening in and out of the classroom to work, these issues, or topics of discussion are called “codes”. Wallerstein defines codes as “a concrete physical representation of a particularly critical issue that has come up during the listening phase” (38). These codes can form many exercises, but should always represent a familiar issues, be presented as a problem with no obvious good or bad side, focus on one concern at a time and offer possibilities for small action, and many solutions. Codes allow students to explore issues in a depersonalized setting, and ultimately, promote critical thinking and action. To get a classroom to discus codes, Wallerstein suggests a multitude of questions one may ask, these range from defining the problem, to questioning why there is a problem. Questioning will hopefully end in a solution or a push towards action, or in identifying a “root cause”, or underlying motives, of an issue (Wallerstein, 41). In this dialogue a teacher must allow students to take charge of their learning and focus on question asking and problem-posing without offering their own personal solutions. Wallerstein concludes that this questioning will facilitate group learning, and “encourage people to rely on each other for learning, and for effective change.” (41). The…