Blackface And the Irrationality of Rationalization Within Systems of Racial Oppression

This post is my commentary on some of the comments to this post entitled Blackface and Bloodstains which I reblogged at https://ephraimseducation.wordpress.com/2013/11/01/blackface-and-bloodstains/  The original post is located here http://speakfaithfully.wordpress.com/2013/10/27/blackface-and-bloodstains/#comment-1315

No, some white people, you are not, never have been, and never will be victims of Black oppression in this country.
No, some white people, some of you still do not fully understand the nature of the oppressor/ oppressed relationship.  Evidence?  You read James Baldwin, and you feel insulted.  Evidence?  You didn’t really read and think about the implications and assumptions embedded in your comments to this post before writing them  Why don’t you read James Baldwin and actually THINK about what he’s saying?  Why don’t you read James Baldwin and try as hard as you can to put yourself in the shoes of James Baldwin?  Because if you haven’t, you haven’t really read James Baldwin.  Why don’t you read over your comments to this post and really THINK about the implications and assumptions of your comments?  Or perhaps I’ll do it, since there is very little chance you will.

Let’s start with this one.
1) “I don’t normally reply to these articles, but I have to speak up.
Just because an outfit is in poor taste, doesn’t mean that they can’t wear it. Flip the roles if you will. Are you offended when a minority dresses as Hitler? or George Bush? By the rationale you propose “Western-Europeans” should be. Your article is at the very heart is racist and segregationist at the same time. The fact that people feel more comfortable today expressing themselves across cultures and ethnicity is the true statement of their lack of racism and their willingness to express themselves as they see fit.
You have a right to be offended, true. But I still have a right to express myself.
Also, if you look at the actual history of Halloween you will see that it is all about ACTUAL dead people. Get your facts straight please. Stop perpetuating your racism and let human nature and humor live on.” Continue reading

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Critical Thinking vs. Memorization

This is the first in a series of blog posts in which I will tell you about my experience taking an educational assessment techniques course completely dictated and dominated by a Pearson textbook curriculum.  Throughout the course, I engaged in a series of email correspondences with my professor, in a passionately desperate (or desperately passionate…whichever way you prefer to see it) attempt to escape the confines of classroom discussion Continue reading

Postformal Psychology and Critical Thinking: The Finale

This is the third and final installment of my series of blog posts on postformal psychology and critical thinking.  The first one was entitled “Sick and Tired of Your College Professor Lecturing at you everyday? Postformal Psychology May Just Be the Answer To Your Woes.”  The second one was very plainly entitled “Postformal Psychology Continued.”    

Etymology refers to the origin of culturally validated knowledge.  Where does it come from?  How is it formed?  How does it come to be commonly accepted as truth?  In the beginning of the movie, Eva has a tense exchange with Hilary Swank in which she reveals her deep hatred for white people. Continue reading

Postformal Psychology Continued

This blog post is a continuation of my last post entitled “Sick and Tired of Your College Professor Lecturing At You Everyday?  Postformal Psychology May Just Be The Answer To Your Woes.”

We begin with the psychological theory that, if implemented, promises to take all levels of our educational system far beyond their current boundaries.  Postformal educational psychology begins with the fundamental premise that the definition of intelligence needs to be democratized.  What does this mean?  It means that we have to stop thinking of intelligence as something that is fixed and innate, immovable and inborn-in other words one size fits all and if you don’t fit than too bad for you.  We have to remove ourselves from this fatalistic mode of thinking which dictates that some kids just can’t learn and are doomed to fail in school no matter what.  As prospective teachers, we have to avoid saying “I did all I can, and now I just can’t do anymore.”  We must not only willing be but able to critically interrogate our own teaching practice, to constantly be rethinking and altering our own pedagogies with respect to the needs of our students, and resist falling into the trap of labeling some of our students as less than intelligent.  To say that intelligence needs to be democratized is to say that no one is less than intelligent and that intelligence is indeed learnable. Continue reading

Sick and Tired of Your College Professor Lecturing at you everyday? Postformal Psychology May Just Be the Answer To Your Woes

Today I gave a presentation on postformal psychology and critical thinking for my educational psychology course.  It was a long presentation, nearly 30 minutes, but even though the recommended time was 10-15 min, I didn’t make it so long for the grade.  As you can expect , most of the people in the class are prospective teachers and I felt that it was critically important to get the message of postformal psychology out there to get us teacher ed. students to really think about how our own educational experiences will influence our future practice.  Postformal psychology is obviously much more extensive that what I present here, and I encourage all to go out and do further research on this amazing and awe-inspiring topic. Continue reading

What Has A College Education Meant To Me?

Just One More Semester Till I Get That Damn Piece Of
Paper

I just got done listening to the podcast of Freakonomics Goes to College on WNYC.  In the second part of the show, Steven Levitt, American economist, William B. Ogden Distinguished Service Professor of Economics at The University of Chicago, and co-founder of the Freakonomics blog, makes a profound statement with which I think every current and former college student could easily identify. Continue reading

We Students Need A Unified And Thoughtful Voice In Our Educational Lives

Allow My Friend Calvin To Explain My Reasoning

I know that, in America, teachers are demonized mostly for the wrong reasons and mostly by politicians on the left and right of the political spectrum who have fallen hopelessly in love with the “Standardized testing/Accountability” fad that has completely run our educational system into the ground……….

But folks, there are some terrible teachers out there who don’t fall into this category.  They are called college professors, and some of them just really don’t have a clue what they’re doing and the worst part is their failure to realize that they don’t have a clue what they’re doing.  

Continue reading