Critical pedagogy, or education intended to inspire consciousness and action for change, has the potential to become one of the most relevant and powerful tools in urban education today. But how can teachers adapt these theoretical beliefs to meet the needs of today’s urban classrooms? This textbook, intended for undergraduate and graduate courses in education, considers the potential of conceptual and empirical work in critical pedagogy and cultural studies to inform, confront and transform many of the persistent challenges we presently face in urban education.
The book begins with an examination of the historical antecedents of critical pedagogy and cultural studies to provide the necessary contexts for their implications to transform the ways we work with urban youth. The second half of the book focuses on practical applications of critical pedagogy and cultural studies in K-12 urban classrooms. Drawing on numerous case studies and examples to keep students engaged, the text explores how teachers across the K-12 spectrum and across content areas have involved young people in making the world a better place as they have also increased important academic skills. A glossary of terms offers short explanations of key terms associated with critical pedagogy and cultural studies, demystifying language that can cause major roadblocks to students’ fully interacting with these ideas. A list of key works in the field along with a short s descriptions of the book and its significance inspires students’ further study of the field.
In an engaging, understandable writing style, this text walks educators through the many ways work in critical pedagogy and cultural studies can fundamentally reshape the urban educational landscape.
Ernest Morrell is an Associate Professor in Urban Schooling and Associate Director for Youth Research at the Institute for Democracy, Education, and Access (IDEA) at the University of California at Los Angeles.