Pedagogy against dis-utopia: from conscientization to the education of desire

Amsler, Sarah (2008) Pedagogy against dis-utopia: from conscientization to the education of desire. In: Current Perspectives in Social Theory. Emerald, pp. 291-325. ISBN 9780762314836

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Abstract

The commitments of critical sociology also hinge on another, often less-recognized assumption that the human condition itself is grounded in the existence or potentiality of a pre-theoretical and universal human need or desire to transcend, to self-determine, to be. Hence, while the project of struggling to create a better world is often framed as a problem of removing political, economic, cultural and psychological barriers to social change, for critical theorists it also begs questions about the social constitution of deep subjective impulses, the essence or contingency of ‘human nature’, and the possibility of educating people to need and desire differently than they presently do. The question of whether ‘another world is possible’, therefore, also communicates a new (and perhaps long overdue) ambivalence about basic sociological concepts of structure and agency, subjective and objective culture, and the definition of basic human needs and desires.

Item Type:Book Section
Additional Information:The commitments of critical sociology also hinge on another, often less-recognized assumption that the human condition itself is grounded in the existence or potentiality of a pre-theoretical and universal human need or desire to transcend, to self-determine, to be. Hence, while the project of struggling to create a better world is often framed as a problem of removing political, economic, cultural and psychological barriers to social change, for critical theorists it also begs questions about the social constitution of deep subjective impulses, the essence or contingency of ‘human nature’, and the possibility of educating people to need and desire differently than they presently do. The question of whether ‘another world is possible’, therefore, also communicates a new (and perhaps long overdue) ambivalence about basic sociological concepts of structure and agency, subjective and objective culture, and the definition of basic human needs and desires.
Keywords:critical theory, subject-transformation, utopia, critical pedagogy
Subjects:V Historical and Philosophical studies > V540 Social Philosophy
L Social studies > L370 Social Theory
Divisions:College of Social Science > School of Education
ID Code:4980
Deposited By: Sarah Amsler
Deposited On:29 Mar 2012 20:52
Last Modified:29 Mar 2012 20:52

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