ERIC Number: ED332182
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-Mar-22
Reference Count: N/A
Empowerment/Being All That You Can Be: An Experiment towards a Multiculturalist Practice.
As a radical supplement to multiculturalism a liberatory pedagogy is needed that explicitly challenges social conditions and ideologies that reproduce inequality. In training new teaching assistants of composition, a teacher used Jane Tompkins'"Pedagogy of the Distressed" to try an experiment in critical pedagogy. In her text, Tompkins argues that the performance model of teaching is the dominant model of alienated teaching in academia today. In an introductory literature course organized around the theme of growing up in America as represented in the autobiographies of Russell Baker, Richard Wright, and Maxine Hong Kingston, a substantial portion of class time was given over to student direction. Class experiments, however, in trying to "desocialize" students from sexist, racist, and classist ideologies acquired in previous educational experience were only intermittently successful. Possibly this is because literature teachers and students have been traditionally socialized to think of literature in some ideologically purified sense, above the temporal fray of historical conflict. Tompkins' pedagogy can be an effective way to transcend the traditional performance model of teaching, contribute to the empowerment of students, and enhance multicultural awareness--as long as teachers maintain constant dialogue among themselves and provide adequate space for students to develop independent voices and overcome feelings of cultural hegemony. (RDS)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Descriptive; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Critical Pedagogy; Cultural Hegemony; Educational Issues; Student Empowerment
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Conference on College Composition and Communication (42nd, Boston, MA, March 21-23, 1991).