Theoretical foundations for social justice education.

ABSTRACT This chapter contextualizes the approach to oppression and social justice taken throughout this book. It provides a framework for readers who approach oppression and social justice from other positions to see what approaches we share, and where we differ. Our intention is to foster a broad and continuing dialogue among the many people who struggle, as we do, to find more effective ways to challenge oppressive systems and promote social justice through education. The chapter examines the enduring and the ever-changing aspects of oppression by tracing ways in which "commonsense" knowledge and assumptions make it difficult to see oppression clearly. We underscore the value of history for discerning patterns, often invisible in daily life, that reflect systemic aspects of oppression as it functions in different periods and contexts. We propose concepts that enable us to freeze and focus on specific forms of oppression in our teaching while staying cognizant of the shifting kaleidoscope of dynamic and complex social processes in which they are embedded. As historical circumstances change and newly emerging social movements take up issues of oppression in the United States and throughout the world, new definitions and understandings will evolve. Through highlighting the historical and contextual nature of this process here, we hope to avoid the danger of reifying systems of oppression as static or treating individuals as unidimensional and unchanging. History illustrates both how tenacious and variable systems of oppression are and how dynamic and creative we must continue to be to rise to the challenges they pose. The concepts and processes we present in this text are also continuously evolving. We hope the work presented in this second edition will contribute to an ongoing dialogue about social justice education theory and practice in ways that can have more potent and sustained impacts for justice, fairness and equality in our world. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)

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    • "According to Hackman (2005), a robust social justice perspective empowers students by encouraging them to think critically, and includes five key components: content, critical thinking, action and social change, reflection, and awareness of multicultural group dynamics. We believe that however fortuitous, Budde's original notion of charters held the promise of social justice in that teachers could structure learning environments that were sensitive to learning needs, include strategic content in their lessons, and sequence structured activities carefully, with a flexibility that supported each student (Bell & Griffin, 1997). "
    Equity & Excellence in Education 02/2015; 48(1). DOI:10.1080/10665684.2015.991161
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    • "The term " social justice, " when applied to teacher education, has been appropriated in so many ways that the term has become diluted, often synonymous with offering a multicultural education course or placing candidates in schools with students of color (McDonald & Zeichner, 2009). While different educators and scholars take up different positions on social justice education, such as redistributing resources, developing student agency, or recognizing and affirming all social groups, especially those that have been marginalized, and ensuring their success (Cochran- Smith & Lytle, 2009; Zeichner, 2009), we argue, following Bell (2007), that each perspective is necessary for education that is socially just: "
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    • "Diversity is often defined as demographic " differences among groups of people and individuals based on ethnicity , race, socioeconomic status, gender, exceptionalities, language, religion, sexual orientation and geographical area " (National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education, 2008, p. 86), although it is often limited to race. Inclusion has been described as a process (Williams, Berger, & McClendon, 2005) that speaks to environmental experiences that either contribute to or detract from the " full and equal participation " of all community members (Bell, 2006, p. 3). "
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    ABSTRACT: While the concepts related to diversity and inclusion are commonly found as part of universities’ mission and vision, implementing these concepts into practice can present a challenge. This study identified discrepancies between concepts and practice of diversity and inclusion at a multidisciplinary health sciences university. The results indicated that participants experienced inclusion along a range of engagement. Hispanic/Latino students, faculty, and staff as well as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer students and staff experienced disparaging behavior on a regular basis at the University, which contributed to fear. The results demonstrate barriers to the inclusion efforts and indicate that the university must bridge the gap between diversity concepts and practice.
    SAGE Open 04/2013; 3(2). DOI:10.1177/2158244013489686
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