ERIC Number: EJ771859
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2007-Aug
Reference Count: 60
Teachers' Constructions of Democracy: Intersections of Western and Indigenous Knowledge in South Africa and Kenya
Kubow, Patricia K.
Comparative Education Review, v51 n3 p307-328 Aug 2007
In this article, the author aims to explore the roles of knowledge in constructions of democracy. First, she discusses theoretical ways to differentiate among some of the existing perspectives on democracy and citizenship within democratic states. She also examines Western conceptions of democracy and democratic citizenship, which draw distinctions between the individual and the citizen, to show how they separate the public and private spheres of citizens' lives. From the perspective of these distinctions, local culture and indigenous knowledge are often devalued, and capitalism is paired with democracy to form a closely aligned economic and political structure. Implicated in this totalizing narrative are relations between indigenous and nonindigenous groups and between men/boys and women/girls. Second, she considers teachers' voices from two democratic African nations, South Africa and Kenya. Both countries face challenges to strengthening democratic environments and governance institutions. It is at the local level that "the sharpest institutional conflicts about poverty, entitlement and governance play out" (Brown and Folscher 2005, xv), for party-political dominance has led to corrupt administrations. Citizens' needs for services, such as housing, are largely unmet. Third, she draws on Western and on African viewpoints to construct a conception of democracy as freedom of mind and human agency.
Descriptors: Foreign Countries, Indigenous Knowledge, Democracy, Citizenship, Citizenship Education, Western Civilization, Social Systems, Teacher Attitudes, Governance, Poverty, Conflict, Local Government, Housing, Focus Groups, Elementary School Teachers, Secondary School Teachers
University of Chicago Press. Journals Division, P.O. Box 37005, Chicago, IL 60637. Tel: 877-705-1878; Tel: 773-753-3347; Fax: 877-705-1879; Fax: 773-753-0811; e-mail: email@example.com; Web site: http://www.journal.uchicago.edu
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Kenya; South Africa