It's Diablogical!
A Collaborative Diablog on Feminist Pedagogy
Thoughts on Visibility 3 and 4

I just (finally) listened to Visibility 3 and 4. Some great stuff, including my admission that I just saw Eclipse. Here are some of the ideas I want to highlight:

  • Blogs provide us with the opportunity to rethink and experiment with new ways of evaluating our students. We can give feedback (without grades because of privacy issues and because we–at least I–don’t like grades) through comments on their entries. Students can also give feedback to each other about ideas and writing, etc.
  • Like I mentioned in my last post, blogs enable us, as teachers, to make our pedagogy visible to students. Our blogs (our course and personal ones) also enable us to make our political/intellectual commitments and our passion for feminism and feminist blogging visible.
  • By making our commitments, passion and pedagogical-style visible, we can (although not always) earn some trust from our students. When we are willing to make all of these things visible, and to do the hard work of blogging too (and it is hard work), they are often more willing to engage in blogs themselves.
  • Here’s a binary we need to bust (or keep busting): student vs. teacher. How do we challenge the strict division between teachers and students and the assumption that teachers are the only experts in the class? Can students be teachers and teachers be students? Maybe Paulo Freire and his critique of the banking method of education + his emphasis on dialogue are important here?
  • Blogs can enable us to access our feminist self–what a great idea KCF! In connection to this idea, blogs are a great space for feminist consciousness-raising by encouraging us to express our authentic selves (or at least engage in authentic moments) and to be purposeful and critical about what and how we post those expressions. Oftentimes these expressions involve challenging what counts as serious academic writing–we encourage students to express their feelings about thinking/writing and to post about how other authors’ ideas connect with their own feelings/experiences/ideas.
  • We need to make visible to others (especially the haters) the ways in which blogging and the blog experience can train students to be better thinkers and citizens.
  • Finally, at some point in the dialogue, I mentioned how the goal of my classroom is more about creating an experience and less about learning facts. I suggested that this idea of the experience was partly inspired by Kevin Kumashiro and his book, Troubling Education. Here’s the passage that I mentioned:

Critical pedagogy needs to move away from saying that students need this or my critical perspective since such an approach merely replaces one (socially hegemonic) framework for seeing the world with another (academically hegemonic) one. Rather than aim for understanding of some critical perspective, antioppressive pedagogy should aim for effect by having students engage with relevant aspects of critical theory and extend its terms of analysis to their own lives, but then critique it for what it overlooks or forecloses (49).

In this passage, Kumashiro is suggesting that an anti-oppressive classroom is not about learning how to know ideas, but learning how to engage with them. I agree. And I think that blogs provide students and teachers many exciting ways for engagement.

1 Comment to “Thoughts on Visibility 3 and 4”

  1. SLP says:

    In our visibility dialogue you suggest that feminist Consciousness raising might serve as a good overarching theme for our chapter. I like that idea and think that we might want to use it to organize/frame our ideas. Here’s a set of questions for you to think/write about (I will think/write about it too):

    How does using blogs in the classroom and blogging while teaching enable you to access your feminist self/selves? What is/are your feminist self/selves? Any examples from your blogs?