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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Tamara L Myers
CHID 480
Seattle Campus

Special Topics: Advanced Study of the History of Ideas

Examines a different subject or problem from a comparative framework with an interdisciplinary perspective. Offered: AWSp.

Class description

The neoliberal claim “There Is No Alternative!” is more than a catchphrase. It’s also a political strategy to foreclose change efforts and it can act like a vice grip on our imaginations. But, alternatives are always possible. Even when injustice is most acute, people have always resisted dehumanization and struggled to build more just and humane relationships, sometimes within the cracks. In many communities and movements, education has played a key role in these efforts.

How have communities most harmed by social or economic injustice used education as a vehicle to identify visions of justice and pursue them on the ground? What role can education play in bringing about collective liberation? What specific educational strategies have social justice activists and movements in the 20th and early 21st century used in their fights for social transformation? These are the kinds of questions we’ll be asking this quarter. We will cast a wide and comparative net to build knowledge about political traditions often neglected or marginalized in studies of education (e.g., critical, post- and anti-colonial, feminist, queer, Indigenous & Indigenist, anarchist and autonomist Marxist approaches). We will seek out our own and others’ aspirations for transformative social and educational change with rigor and creativity. We’ll also build practical skills by experimenting with pedagogical practices found in both formal schooling and a range of other contexts (social movement organizations, groups, and collectives, freeskools, community organizations, study groups, intentional communities, etc.). Take note! This course is highly experimental and relies heavily on engaged, creative learning. Participants are likely to find some of the pedagogies we’re explore each week challenging, perhaps in surprising ways. Education and social change don’t happen in a vacuum, so together we'll aim to produce something useful for activists, organizers, and educators interested in radical pedagogies, but who can’t be part of our learning journey this winter.

Student learning goals

General method of instruction

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Class assignments and grading


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Additional Information
Last Update by Tamara L Myers
Date: 11/15/2013