Promoting Critical Practice in Adult Education: New Directions for Adult and Continuing Education / Edition 1

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Offering theoretical and practical knowledge to help critical adulteducators in their attempts to enact critical pedagogy in their ownclassroom, this volume explores critical theory, feminism, criticalpostmodernism, Africentrism, queer theory, and cultural studies.Picking up on the themes first raised by Elizabeth Ellsworth,critical theory and classic critical pedagogy do not get aparticularly easy ride. None of the authors claims that criticalapproaches are a simple solution to the tangles of late modernity.In every case the authors see critical pedagogy as complex,insightful, challenging, limited, and difficult to put intopractice. But in every case, they see critical perspectives asoffering the hope and potential of a more just world.

The idea that critical perspectives on teaching are difficult toenact in the classroom is not new. And what do we mean by criticalperspectives anyway? In this volume some of the most excitingscholars in adult education—whether established oremerging—provide insights into what it means to be critical andhow it affects the concrete practices of teaching adults.

This is the 102nd issue of the quarterly higher education reportNew Directions for Adult and ContinuingEducation.

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Table of Contents

Editors’ Notes (Jennifer A. Sandlin, Ralf St.Clair).

1. Blundering Toward Critical Pedagogy: True Tales from theAdult Literacy Classroom (Alisa Belzer)
Sometimes critical practice can create as many challenges foreducators as it addresses.

2. Class and Teaching (Tom Nesbit)
Class is an underexplored dimension of the adult educationclassroom.

3. Consumerism, Consumption, and a Critical Consumer Educationfor Adults (Jennifer A. Sandlin)
One of the most promising areas for critical adult educationpractice is consumer education.

4. Teaching with the Enemy: Critical Adult Education in theAcademy (Ralf St.Clair)
Critical adult educators in the academy are limited in theirpractices and will have to find ways around the limits.

5. Toward a Postmodern Pedagogy (Deborah Kilgore)
Critical postmodernism can tell us a great deal about knowledge,students, instructors, and power.

6. Challenges to the Classroom Authority of Women of Color(Ming-yeh Lee, Juanita Johnson-Bailey)
Two professors who are women of color examine the theoretical andpractical underpinnings of feminist pedagogy.

7. Africentric Philosophy: A Remedy for Eurocentric Dominance(Lisa Merriweather Hunn)
Africentrism can provide essential insights into creating anonoppressive practice.

8. Breaking the Cult of Rationality: Mindful Awareness ofEmotion in the Critical Theory Classroom (Jamie L. Callahan)
Looking at critical theory as a rational endeavor may meanoverlooking the significance of emotion.

9. Activism as Practice: Some Queer Considerations (Robert J.Hill)
Queer critical postmodernism challenges the way we divide up andthink about the world.

10. Using Critical Personal Narratives: A PoststructuralPerspective on Practice (Valerie-Lee Chapman)
The stories we tell reveal how language, power, knowledge, andinstructional practices construct our identities and behaviors.


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