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This book displays the striking creativity and profound insight that characterized Freire's work to the very end of his life-an uplifting and provocative exploration not only for educators, but also for all that learn and live. This book displays the striking creativity and profound insight that characterized Freire's work to the very end of his life-an uplifting and provocative exploration not only for educators, but also for all that learn and live.


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This book displays the striking creativity and profound insight that characterized Freire's work to the very end of his life-an uplifting and provocative exploration not only for educators, but also for all that learn and live. This book displays the striking creativity and profound insight that characterized Freire's work to the very end of his life-an uplifting and provocative exploration not only for educators, but also for all that learn and live.

30 review for Pedagogy of Freedom: Ethics, Democracy, and Civic Courage

  1. 5 out of 5

    Jordan Mosley

    I cannot lie. This book was truly excellent. Paulo Friere never disappoints me. With this book, I was able to re-evaluate what revolutionary ethics are in education and what not to do when teaching. He explicitly talks about respect is the underlying thing to true critical education. Respect comes in many forms: listening, accepting what is not your opinion, knowing you are not complete and the other person in not complete and trying to become better. In a democratic learning space, you have to I cannot lie. This book was truly excellent. Paulo Friere never disappoints me. With this book, I was able to re-evaluate what revolutionary ethics are in education and what not to do when teaching. He explicitly talks about respect is the underlying thing to true critical education. Respect comes in many forms: listening, accepting what is not your opinion, knowing you are not complete and the other person in not complete and trying to become better. In a democratic learning space, you have to respect the student's organic intellectualism, subjectivity and understand his circumstances; as well, being a teacher means that you are not complete and understanding the only real way to teach is through praxis of your subject and trying to make it relative to your students. And to bridge the idea of Utopian democracy, you have to strive to create an unity between the teacher and the student and try close the space between them. We also have to realize there is no such thing as objectivity in education because when we learn in the world we interact with the world around us. When we try to learn about education in an objective way, we create a mechanistic sphere of learning where critical thoughts are hindered, the status quo is either proliferated or go unabated, and create a sense of oppression that deprives the students of their subjectivity. The book was really interesting. In a way, he believes that through ethics in democratic pedagogy, dialouge, and mutual respect of everyone's subjectivity we can progressive attack the grammar of violence depicted in our langauge. I truly give it five stars.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Zak Shareef

    I wish I could have met Freire. This book is profoundly inspiring. The book would have been better if he'd fleshed out several of his philosophical principles more fully. The ambiguity of his usage, particularly of the term "the subject", leaves more room for interpretation than I'd prefer when someone is making points that are so important for the contemporary world. For those of us with experience in the American education system, Freire's theories on education read as a near fantasy. The free I wish I could have met Freire. This book is profoundly inspiring. The book would have been better if he'd fleshed out several of his philosophical principles more fully. The ambiguity of his usage, particularly of the term "the subject", leaves more room for interpretation than I'd prefer when someone is making points that are so important for the contemporary world. For those of us with experience in the American education system, Freire's theories on education read as a near fantasy. The freedom and autonomy his pedagogy demands that the teacher employ judiciously is simply not allowed in public schools in America, and while his work tends to be aimed at those in poverty, his lessons on the intimate relationship between teaching and ethics is increasingly important in our technocentric society for helping students retain and develop their humanity.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Rachel

    Anytime I read a book on pedagogy I am reminded of (and scared by) the immense responsibility that being an educator brings. It makes me question my reasons for teaching what I teach, how I teach it and what I want students to experience, learn and contribute to the classroom and the wider community. I have not read Freire’s earlier (influential and groundbreaking) book Pedagogy of the Oppressed but this book on Pedagogy of Freedom drew connections between activism and education and the role of a Anytime I read a book on pedagogy I am reminded of (and scared by) the immense responsibility that being an educator brings. It makes me question my reasons for teaching what I teach, how I teach it and what I want students to experience, learn and contribute to the classroom and the wider community. I have not read Freire’s earlier (influential and groundbreaking) book Pedagogy of the Oppressed but this book on Pedagogy of Freedom drew connections between activism and education and the role of activist educators. Emphasising the role of love, hope and optimism as teaching tools and as a way of being in the classroom. His influence on bell hooks is clear and the way that her work has also influenced his writing. Would recommend.

  4. 4 out of 5

    May Ling

    I mistook this for a different book that had been recommended. Still, found it very interesting. Most people that read this are educators, but I agree with those that feel that it is relevant even outside of education. Likely sociologists, anthropologists, political scientists, philosophers, and business individuals should also consider it. The themes most relevant to me were these: 1) The idea that education is a form of conditioning, no matter what we think. The idea that there are certain topics I mistook this for a different book that had been recommended. Still, found it very interesting. Most people that read this are educators, but I agree with those that feel that it is relevant even outside of education. Likely sociologists, anthropologists, political scientists, philosophers, and business individuals should also consider it. The themes most relevant to me were these: 1) The idea that education is a form of conditioning, no matter what we think. The idea that there are certain topics of which we are conditioned to, is pretty freakin real. It broadens what we think of as education and variables the educator has to deal with 2) Relevance of the media given conditioning. The idea that environment is going to teach above and beyond anything you try to do is often applied only to trouble children. What Freire is saying is that all children and people are learning under a construct. It's kind of brilliant and extremely relevant. For example, I work in innovation. Many people struggle in that field because they cannot see something that is rather obvious to those that are on the other side of that environment. It has to do with the way in which their mind's eye has been trained and their conditioned responses have been made second nature. 3) Teaching as more than the transference of knowledge - two things here. First it works with the life learner trends that exist. Even here, there is a twist. The life learner is the conscious individual who is actively seeking knowledge. The second is the person who is aware of the degree to which their knowledge is always biased by environment. Knowledge of that allows an individual a better way of realizing what they can't see or won't see. It's a far broader appreciation for knowledge, conditioning, and teaching. 4) What are the ethics of teaching given the relationship between conditioning and relative knowledge? Gotta give him the man credit. That's pretty profound. He thinks it means its vital the educator stay true to self. You can't educate if you yourself aren't a life learner. Additionally, you'll never be a great teacher if you don't keep open to the ignorance of your own biases. The conditioning means that we are all necessarily a bit ignorant. These are my take aways. I thought it was all fairly brilliant.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Kozue

    Liberating and assuring, this book is certainly a must-read for all future educators. It should be read by all workers in educational practices, especially those who wish to make a change in the world. If all the educators and parents are aware of our role in developing “critical consciousness” in all learners (including ourselves), our students can prepare themselves to become life-long learners and world leaders for the better future. It also reminded me of the ethical responsibility as an edu Liberating and assuring, this book is certainly a must-read for all future educators. It should be read by all workers in educational practices, especially those who wish to make a change in the world. If all the educators and parents are aware of our role in developing “critical consciousness” in all learners (including ourselves), our students can prepare themselves to become life-long learners and world leaders for the better future. It also reminded me of the ethical responsibility as an educator who deals with young people with dreams and hopes. This was my second time to read it through, since it was a required reading in my college sociology class. Today I found it even more empowering and awakening as I understood it from a wider perspective. I’d love to come back to this book again in a few years.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Sherwin

    useful for the "Dead poet society" type teachers. useful for the "Dead poet society" type teachers.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Jay

    This would be a good introduction to Freire's work. He describes a true education as one that values the individual and teaches critical thought as opposed to one that merely transfers information and masks opinion as fact. He goes on to describe the former as the best way to combat the dehumanizing effects of neoliberalism and the latter as a tool for its perpetuation. This would be a good introduction to Freire's work. He describes a true education as one that values the individual and teaches critical thought as opposed to one that merely transfers information and masks opinion as fact. He goes on to describe the former as the best way to combat the dehumanizing effects of neoliberalism and the latter as a tool for its perpetuation.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Chrissy

    another GENUIS! so inspiring. educational pedagogy

  9. 5 out of 5

    May

    'I cannot be a teacher if I do not perceive with ever greater clarity that my practice demands of me a definition about where I stand. A break with what is not right ethically. I must choose between one thing and another thing. I cannot be a teacher and be in favour of everyone and everything. I cannot be in favour merely of people, humanity, vague phrases far from the concrete nature of educative practice. Mass hunger and unemployment, side by side with opulence, are not the result of destiny, 'I cannot be a teacher if I do not perceive with ever greater clarity that my practice demands of me a definition about where I stand. A break with what is not right ethically. I must choose between one thing and another thing. I cannot be a teacher and be in favour of everyone and everything. I cannot be in favour merely of people, humanity, vague phrases far from the concrete nature of educative practice. Mass hunger and unemployment, side by side with opulence, are not the result of destiny, as certain reactionary circles would have us believe, claiming that people suffer because they can do nothing about the situation. The question here is not "destiny". It is immorality. (...) I refuse to add my voice to that of the "peacemakers" who call upon the wretched of the earth to be resigned to their fate. My voice is in tune with a different language, another kind of music. It speaks of resistance, indignation, the just anger of those are deceived and betrayed. It speaks, too, of their right to rebel against the ethical transgressions of which they are the long-suffering victims.' (p. 93)

  10. 5 out of 5

    Nathan

    I recently finished another book on Franklin Roosevelt which detailed his death shortly after his fourth inauguration and Truman's ascent to the presidency. In his address, Roosevelt, challenged American citizens to be "citizens of the world, members of the human community." This was my first thought upon reading this work by Freire. Each page is like a constant reminder/challenge to teachers regarding how to ensure that our pedagogy enables us to teach students to be just what Roosevelt envisio I recently finished another book on Franklin Roosevelt which detailed his death shortly after his fourth inauguration and Truman's ascent to the presidency. In his address, Roosevelt, challenged American citizens to be "citizens of the world, members of the human community." This was my first thought upon reading this work by Freire. Each page is like a constant reminder/challenge to teachers regarding how to ensure that our pedagogy enables us to teach students to be just what Roosevelt envisioned--in an authentic manner. First and foremost the book is about love; for life, people, students and self. It is less structured than Im used to and I found it refreshing. It begins with the "Scourge of neoliberalism, with its cynical fatalism and its inflexible negation of the right to dream..." It moves on to the critical relationship between a persons theory and practice. Continuing on with the theme of the teaching-learning relationship and process from his first book. He talks about the permanent condition of becoming. The necessity of ultimate respect for all people, understanding of their plight from their perspective and duty to speak out where they cannot. "It is fundamental for us to know that without certain qualities or virtues, such as a generous loving heart, respect for others, tolerance, humility, a joyful disposition, love of life, openness to what is new, a disposition to welcome change, perseverance in the struggle, a refusal of determinism, a spirit of hope, and openness to justice, progressive pedagogical practice is not possible. It is something that the merely scientific, technical mind cannot accomplish." pg 108

  11. 5 out of 5

    Melissa

    It's pretty much always better to be reading Freire than to not. This book is very lively, and it was published after he died. Contains beautiful prose and poetic statements about human life, change, growth, courage, and freedom. A nice follow-up to Pedagogy of the Oppressed, particularly regarding a sticking point (about the banking method of education from ch. 2 in P of O) that Freire really clarifies here. This book, however, is not as rigorous and as obviously philosophically complex as P of It's pretty much always better to be reading Freire than to not. This book is very lively, and it was published after he died. Contains beautiful prose and poetic statements about human life, change, growth, courage, and freedom. A nice follow-up to Pedagogy of the Oppressed, particularly regarding a sticking point (about the banking method of education from ch. 2 in P of O) that Freire really clarifies here. This book, however, is not as rigorous and as obviously philosophically complex as P of O...but sometimes that's just fine, too.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Esmé J

    “I teach because I search, because I question, and because I submit myself to questioning.” Freire introduces an important theoretical intervention into the project of education. His passionate case against a "a banking style" of education is very convincing and I would probably recommend this book to every teacher out there - progressive and traditional alike. Unfortunately, Freire does not offer very much concrete advice to educators who hope to enact his brand of pedagogy of freedom. His words “I teach because I search, because I question, and because I submit myself to questioning.” Freire introduces an important theoretical intervention into the project of education. His passionate case against a "a banking style" of education is very convincing and I would probably recommend this book to every teacher out there - progressive and traditional alike. Unfortunately, Freire does not offer very much concrete advice to educators who hope to enact his brand of pedagogy of freedom. His words made me feel inspired, but not any wiser as to the "how to."

  13. 4 out of 5

    Dayna Smith

    I had to read this for a Master's Class. I can't say I would recommend it. I had to read this for a Master's Class. I can't say I would recommend it.

  14. 4 out of 5

    CTEP

    Pedagogy of Freedom in my opinion, revolves around Freire's statement: "The condition of becoming is the condition of being." The book discusses the relationship between education and this idea that human beings are, or at least naturally ought to be, in a perpetual process of development and coming-into-being. Freire asserts that the educative process ought to be one in which learners are not presented with the world as is, following a "banking" model of education that creates a static picture Pedagogy of Freedom in my opinion, revolves around Freire's statement: "The condition of becoming is the condition of being." The book discusses the relationship between education and this idea that human beings are, or at least naturally ought to be, in a perpetual process of development and coming-into-being. Freire asserts that the educative process ought to be one in which learners are not presented with the world as is, following a "banking" model of education that creates a static picture of the world and history as essentially already having been written. Instead, he proposes that educators ought, and are even ethically obligated, to cultivate in learners the capacity to critically "read" , and "intervene" in the world. By intervening he seems to mean the ability to make a change in the world, rather than merely adapting to the contents of the world as they are given. Freire additionally has no qualms with stating expressly that this means poor people turning the tide on unjust political and socio-economic institutions that exploit and oppress them. Freire has the unique ability to compel his audience. Whether one agrees with his claims or not, they at least are not claims that one can readily ignore. I have thought a lot about how his ideas may apply to my service year and even beyond. This book has lead me to reaffirm some values I hold and to question others. Freire consistently asserts that educators ought to be constantly assessing and reflecting on the process and method of education. This book has certainly provoked me to do just that. I would absolutely recommend this book to other members,. It may be especially of interest to those who are interested in the subjects ethics or the philosophy of education. Although we are quickly coming to the end of the service term, I think that the questions raised in this book are relatable to any number of circumstance members may find them in. Whether members are planning on working in education in the future or not, this book discusses learning in general as process of becoming, a process in which we are all constantly involved in, whether or not our present role is that of an educator.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Greyson

    My first Freire, somehow, even though I made it through a two-year teaching program, date a teacher, and work in youth development. This is one to return to; a work on the ethics of human dignity and the right to growth for both children and adults. It's an affirmation that the struggle for a more just society is not only imperative but also *possible* and that change can and does happen when we labor daily and do not despair. It's also high on the "to-read-again-before-fatherhood" list for a fe My first Freire, somehow, even though I made it through a two-year teaching program, date a teacher, and work in youth development. This is one to return to; a work on the ethics of human dignity and the right to growth for both children and adults. It's an affirmation that the struggle for a more just society is not only imperative but also *possible* and that change can and does happen when we labor daily and do not despair. It's also high on the "to-read-again-before-fatherhood" list for a few years down the line. Even in translation his writing is the sort that encourages the reader to highlight so often that the whole page, chapter, and ultimately entire text of the book is covered with the garish fluorescent pinks and yellows so beloved of educators.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Julia

    An invigorating, challenging, pithy look at education - a book I wish I read at the beginning of university rather than at the end. It took me a little while to figure out how to read it, but once I got the hang of it I learned so much. Would definitely recommend to anyone interested in the ethical and political dimensions of teaching and learning.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Gabriel Bvc

    Blame capitalism for existence of misery. What a joke. I may agree with a few points, quite like the idea about an open dialogue with students. However, the imposition that it should be done through Freire's personal opinion and ideology, makes this book only interesting for left-wingers, not for teachers and society as whole. Blame capitalism for existence of misery. What a joke. I may agree with a few points, quite like the idea about an open dialogue with students. However, the imposition that it should be done through Freire's personal opinion and ideology, makes this book only interesting for left-wingers, not for teachers and society as whole.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Emily Bonham-Janes

    This book is dense and hard to read at times (especially you are new to theory like me) BUT! it genuinely changed my life for the better and inspired me in a way I never expected. This book awakened my love for learning and motivated me to pursue teaching as a career. Great to read with a buddy to help discuss. I would recommend this book to anyone interested is education and/or social justice!

  19. 4 out of 5

    Nick

    My third Paulo Freire book and my forth read on critical pedagogy over the last couple months. I enjoyed Pedagogy of Freedom more than his landmark Pedagogy of Oppression. Solid book, although dated in some areas. If you love philosophy and education, I recommend anything by Freire.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Dominique Brown

    Fast Fruitful Read As an educator this text offers an alternative to the soul-sucking popular narratives out there and provides a thoughtful pedagogical vision about the possibility of education to transform students and educators alike.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Frank

    Phew. This book wasn’t an easy read, but i managed to get through it. Freire’s writing resonates and relates to student affairs in ways I couldn’t imagine.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Valerie

    One of the foundational textbooks for my program. I found this book gave me alot to think about and consider, especially challenging beliefs. An interesting read.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Monica

    Freire always lifts me up!

  24. 4 out of 5

    Joao Luis

    Classical and basic book on education for everyone that works in this area.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Tommy

    I honestly liked this better than Pedagogy of the Oppressed and I found it even more useful and relevant. I think everyone should read this right now.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Brianna

    Like I wish I could have been bff with Freire

  27. 4 out of 5

    Dont

    I read this book when it first came out. The last of Freire's books to be written while he was still alive. (The posthumous, Pedagogy of Indignation, was pieced together from disparate individual texts.) It was great to read this again after so many years. In this book, Freire addresses teachers, reflecting on the practice of teaching within the larger questions of ethics and authentic democracy. I don't think I really appreciated the book when I read it the first time but after years of teachin I read this book when it first came out. The last of Freire's books to be written while he was still alive. (The posthumous, Pedagogy of Indignation, was pieced together from disparate individual texts.) It was great to read this again after so many years. In this book, Freire addresses teachers, reflecting on the practice of teaching within the larger questions of ethics and authentic democracy. I don't think I really appreciated the book when I read it the first time but after years of teaching and reflecting on teaching, the second read made quite an impact. The argument itself is something of a recapitulation of a number of themes that Freire had developed over the years; teaching is not about the transfer of knowledge but its production, teaching puts into dialogue content and context, the ethics of teaching is the unity of doing thinking, reflection and practice, radical educators need to see their role in relation to political struggle and organizing, neutrality in teaching is the result of neoliberal hegemony and must be resisted, teaching intervenes in the real world to either replicate the dominant neoliberal ideology or to unmask it, and teaching that sees conditions as changeable (rather than determinant) is about a practice of hope. One other thing that I noticed during this read what the theme of autonomy that exists in the text. This theme occurs in the context of Freire's reflections on authentic democracy. For Freire, the concept of autonomy helps to distinguish a notion of liberty from either authoritarianism or freedom without limits. Hence he adopts the term autonomy as a way of marking a kind of "practice of decision-making" that is conditioned by the social (rather than determined or opposed to the social). Reading these ideas I was reminded of Enrique Dussel's work in the Theses on the Political. It also might be useful to do a political reading of Freire's notion of autonomy in relation to how the term is being theorized by people like Ranabir Samaddar. For these reasons, I think it's unfortunate that the translator chose not to title the book Pedagogy of Autonomy which is much closer to the original Portuguese title and the central political thesis of the book. After all, Freire seems to making the very argument that unlike the generally depoliticized term, "freedom," the term autonomy locates subjectivity within the dialectics of history and the social.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Melissa

    Freire's work is a necessary read today not just for teachers but administrators as well. He challenges teachers to be more reflective and to be willing to try and fail in the process of growth (something again that not just teachers but admins who often are stuck in old rhetoric can also learn from.) He argues, "I believe that if we are going to overcome the crises that at present assail us, we must return to ethics" (117). Thus, Freire's work challenges progressive teachers to become more refle Freire's work is a necessary read today not just for teachers but administrators as well. He challenges teachers to be more reflective and to be willing to try and fail in the process of growth (something again that not just teachers but admins who often are stuck in old rhetoric can also learn from.) He argues, "I believe that if we are going to overcome the crises that at present assail us, we must return to ethics" (117). Thus, Freire's work challenges progressive teachers to become more reflective on their own principles, practices and ideologies in the classroom to avoid the view of teacher as facilitator or transmitter of knowledge. Instead, Freire reminds educators to speak with (vs. speak to) students as autonomous, developing human beings. He underscores the value of good listening, being more comfortable with silences, and the practices of dialogic inquiry. He further reminds educators to be willing to accept and discuss with students how teachers themselves cannot fully be neutral and that they too are always learning and growing. Thus, he emphasizes that teachers must practice what they preach; If we are asking students to be open-minded and curious, to be unafraid of questions or their own ignorance on certain subjects, so too must their teachers. What's more, Freire's discussion of his hope despite the political landscapes is extremely poignant today, and his joy for the experience of teaching (both in its daily practice with people and in the rigor of the work and his own learning that comes with it) is infectious. Yet Freire is still practical in his discussions of how teaching cannot simply transform students or the country, but rather he stressed that our goals and practices in the classroom must carry through outside of it in order for us to truly become progressive teachers and human beings in more than just name alone.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Drick

    This was the last book that Freire wrote before his death in 1997 and in fact the English translation was only 2/3 complete when he died. This book was written in preparation for a seminar at Harvard Graduate School of Education that Freire and Donaldo Macedo were gong to teach.(An interesting historical note is Macedo's discussion of Harvard's decision to cancel the seminar even though Macedo had proposed an option). As such the book deals with ethics of teaching reiterating all of Freire's bas This was the last book that Freire wrote before his death in 1997 and in fact the English translation was only 2/3 complete when he died. This book was written in preparation for a seminar at Harvard Graduate School of Education that Freire and Donaldo Macedo were gong to teach.(An interesting historical note is Macedo's discussion of Harvard's decision to cancel the seminar even though Macedo had proposed an option). As such the book deals with ethics of teaching reiterating all of Freire's basic concepts as to the nature of teaching and the role of the teacher in creating a learning environment where students can become critical thinkers. I had read portions of the book before, but what struck me this time was how much Freire focuses on the character and attitude of the teacher as opposed to philosophy or methods. In fact while Freire does discuss his philosophy he specifically rejects the idea of a "Freire method" preferring to present concepts and ideas that need to be applied in unique ways in specific contexts. But again and again he comes back to the notion that a teacher needs to care for students, exhibit joy, be humble and teachable. Also prominent is his focus on the fact the as human beings we are "unfinished" and that therefore none of us can say we have arrived. The English translation is very accessible and therefore this is an excellent book for anyone seeking to understand Freire's perspective on the role of the teacher in the teacher-learner exchange.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Michael

    In Pedagogy of Freedom (1998), Paulo Freire builds on his theories of critical pedagogy to promote the autonomy of students and to critique and fight against neoliberalism and its cynical stance toward the future (22). He is adamant that an act of teaching must also involve an act of learning (Chapter 2). He also expands on his notions of the unfinished human, stating that "this unfinishedness is essential to our human condition" (52), and that the future is made through trial and error (54). In Pedagogy of Freedom (1998), Paulo Freire builds on his theories of critical pedagogy to promote the autonomy of students and to critique and fight against neoliberalism and its cynical stance toward the future (22). He is adamant that an act of teaching must also involve an act of learning (Chapter 2). He also expands on his notions of the unfinished human, stating that "this unfinishedness is essential to our human condition" (52), and that the future is made through trial and error (54).

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