Critical Thinking—on-the-straight—narrow-minded

Begin clip a minute and twenty seconds in

          According to the Paulo Freire reading, “problem-posing” education is the only way to truly liberate and educate a society. Teachers must, “be partners of the students in their relations with them.” This education requires all to think critically about the issues facing the world and this directly contrasts the “banking” concept of education which assumes children to be merely “‘receptacles’ to be ‘filled’ by the teacher.”

I believe that access to free public education is necessary for a democracy to flourish and have continued success. For a society to govern itself (in a representative democracy) it has the responsibility to elect its own leaders. It is the public’s obligation to ensure it chooses the candidate that will preserve, defend, and progress the country during their administration. To do so, we as a society must think critically every election season.

It is my experience here at Oxy that we are encouraged and forced to think critically before, during, and after each class period. We are challenged to think critically the moment we step on campus. However, Oxy is its own little enclave of 2,000 or so students. We are not a public institution, and our education is certainly not free. We can all think critically, but can the same be said for the rest of our country? Can it be said for the Texas GOP?

This clip demonstrates how there are people and entities in America that believe in the “banking” concept of education. The opposition to teaching critical thinking skills to children certainly shows that. Both political parties in this country try to persuade you to subscribe to their way of thinking, and both can be observed trying to “fill” voters with aggressive and often debatably accurate ads on the TV, internet, and magazines. Whether one does more than the other is for you to decide. But what is clear is that to better educate our public, to better choose our leaders, and to create better discourse in this country, we all must take a step back and think critically. And then we must educate our children to do the same. Paulo Freire certainly got that right.

And that’s The Word!

Picture taken from-

Jesse Kreger

About rowlanda12

This is a blog about the 2012 presidential election. Content is generated by students in Professor Heldman's Politics 101 class. She does not necessarily endorse the views expressed here.
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One Response to Critical Thinking

  1. Rev. Ed Bolella says:

    Great point, how does the discourse of elites differ from what we call “low information” voters? Is the success of President Clinton in the recent campaigns attributable to his capacity to present a clear “Readers Digest” version of information? Is propaganda more useful than critical analysis? Alexis de Tocqueville was aware of our rabid anti-intellectualism centuries ago. As he wrote, “I know of no country in which there is so little independence of mind and real freedom of discussion as in America.” Is higher education meaningless without an adequate baseline for all citizens?

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