The axis diagram revisited again

We can now move to a further refinement of our axis diagram (see figure 0.4); and here we use the term "critical participation" to denote the perspectives that are orientated toward participating critically in society. Note that "critical participation" is oriented in figure 0.4 spatially closer to the category of "critical doing" compared to the category of "critical rationality" (it has a stronger "outer" than an "inner" focus). It is positioned closer to the X axis. However, there is a difference in the degree of commitment here. The "participation" facet of criticality, in turn, has two dimensions: (1) an awareness of oppression (known in the literature both as critical consciousness or conscientization (Freire 1972; 1973) and (2) a more practical dimension, the resistance to oppression (demonstrably, to "resist" something one needs to be aware of what one is resisting). This is known in the critical pedagogy literature as praxis. Both these vectors are represented in figure 0.4.

However, this separation of concerns belies deep similarities. As Burbules and Berk note: "each invokes the term 'critical' as a valued educational goal: urging teachers to help students become more skeptical toward commonly accepted truisms. Each says, in its own way, 'Don't let yourself be deceived.' And each has sought to reach and influence particular groups of educators . . . They share a passion and sense of urgency about the need for more critically oriented classrooms. Yet with very few exceptions these literatures do not discuss one another" (Burbules and Berk 1999, 45). However, there are synergies between the criticality and critical pedagogy movements as indicated by their focus on action.

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