In this book, the author shares her philosophy of the classroom, offering ideas about teaching that fundamentally rethink democratic participation. She writes about a new kind of education, education as the practice of freedom. She advocates the process of teaching students to think critically and raises many concerns central to the field of critical pedagogy, linking them to feminist thought. In the process, these essays face squarely the problems of teachers who do not want to teach, of students who do not want to learn, of racism and sexism in the classroom. Teaching students to "transgress" against racial, sexual, and class boundaries in order to achieve the gift of freedom is, for the author, the teacher's most important goal. -- From back cover.
It's only recently that I have been reading the works of the Buddhist teacher Thich Nhat Hanh, and have found that his way of thinking
When I picked up Teaching to Transgress tonight and began to read, it was easy to slip into hooks's rhythm; she is another writer for whom I have an awesome respect and would love to meet one day. Then I turned a page to discover that her work has been informed by Hanh's.
That explains why she works for me, too. Engaged pedagogy and and engaged Buddhism must fill some kind of need I have.
To educate as the practice of freedom is a way of teaching that anyone can learn. The learning process comes easiest to those of us who teach who also believe that there is an aspect of our vocation that is sacred; who believe that our work is not merely to share information but to share in the intellectual and spiritual growth of our students.
In chapter one, hooks points out that Thich Nhat Hanh's engaged Buddhism is practice in conjunction with contemplation, which is similar to Paulo Friere's "praxis" or combined action and reflection.
*I personally interpret the words "spiritual" and "soul" in a non-theistic way.
I am totally in love with bell hooks. Teaching to Transgress was my reading on the train;