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Description de l’éditeur
This book examines the relationship between democracy and schooling and argues that schools are one of the few spheres left where youth can learn the knowledge and skills necessary to become engaged, critical citizens. Not only is the legacy of democracy addressed through the work of John Dewey and others, but the democratic possibilities of schooling are analyzed through a range of issues extending from the politics of teacher authority to the importance of student voices. These issues have only become more vital in an era of neoliberalism and "smaller government," as Giroux discusses at length in this new updated edition.
This perceptive, piquant proposal for educational reform by educator Giroux ( Theory and Resistance in Educaton ) exposes the supposedly anti-democratic assumptions and underlying elitist prejudices of, among others, Allan Bloom and William Bennett, who see education in terms of ``a narrowly defined labor market perspective.'' Inspired by John Dewey's ``vision of public schools as democratic spheres . . . where the skills of democracy can be practiced, debated, and analyzed,'' Giroux argues that the proper function of schools is that of ``citizenship education,'' the teaching of critical skills that advance emancipatory interests, promote equity and justice, and improve not merely SAT scores, but the quality of public life. Giroux draws upon Marxism, feminism, liberation theology and the pedagogical theories of Paulo Freire et al., and addresses a wide range of interrelated subjectsauthority in the classroom, ethics, teacher education, literacyin terms of their ``critical'' significance, that is, their role in making the school into a ``progressive force in the ongoing struggle for democracy as a way of life.''