March 27th, 2014
Becoming Persons in History: Codifying Everyday Life for School and Community Transformation
A Discussion with Professor Ron Glass, University of California Santa Cruz
Paulo Freire argued that education as a practice of freedom takes historicity as its starting point. This talk examines this premise through a Freirean-inspired community-based reform project that utilized digital stories as codifications of everyday life and as anchors for dialogues seeking to awaken people to their enduring power to make history and culture even as they are shaped by history and culture. The focal project was situated in a community that was overwhelmingly (80%) of Chicano/Latino origin, and marked by great wealth and extreme poverty, with some of the richest agricultural land in the country worked by migrants struggling to put food on their own tables. Contentious local politics, growers' strife with the farmworkers' union, district battles with the teachers' union, and unrequited demands for culturally responsive bilingual schooling shaped the emergence of the project, which launched itself under the slogan "another school and another community are possible!"
Ron Glass is an Associate Professor of Philosophy of Education at the University of California, Santa Cruz, and the PI/Director the Center for Collaborative Research for an Equitable California (http://ccrec.ucsc.edu), a University of California system-wide research program initiative. His investigations of the ethical issues in equity-oriented collaborative community-based research are supported by the Spencer Foundation.
Ron’s work on education as a practice of freedom and on ideological (trans)formation concerns the role of education in developing a just, pluralistic democracy. Among his publications are: Prioritizing Urban Children, Teachers, and Schools through Professional Development Schools (with Pia Lindquist Wong); “Class, Race, and the Discourse of ‘College for All’” (with Kysa Nygreen); and “Paulo Freire’s Philosophy of Praxis and the Foundations of Liberation Education.”
Prior to joining university faculties, Ron directed the Adult Education Development Project, working closely with social justice organizations and world-renowned democratic educators Myles Horton and Paulo Freire. He has received many honors, including a Martin Luther King, Jr., Living the Dream Award from the Phoenix (AZ) Human Relations Commission. He earned a Ph.D. in Philosophy of Education and M.A. in Philosophy at Stanford University, a C.Phil. in Philosophy of Education at the University of California, Berkeley, and both an Ed.M. and B.A. (with honors) at Harvard University.
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