EDST 221: Decolonizing Education

Who determines what is true and worth knowing? How has the construction of knowledge and academic traditions from across the globe been impacted by such phenomena as (post)modernity, (neo)colonialism, and (neo)liberalism? Why do any of the questions above matter to your own personal history, beliefs, and identity? This course will provide a space for students to critically examine the history and development of the discourses that have shaped their educational experiences and their understanding of the purpose of education. The first half of the course will focus on texts and assignments that interrogate how some of our modern epistemological discourses were formed and maintained through the lens of postcolonial studies and critical educational studies.

The second half of the course will center on ways people have worked within these dominant modes of thought to resist hegemonic modern discourses that privilege logical positivism, quantification, objectivism, and Western European histories and ideologies above all else. This course will involve reflection essays on weekly readings, intergroup dialogue, and activities that will encourage students to examine their own connection to the theoretical concepts presented in class. The culminating project/final will be a scholarly personal narrative wherein students will synthesize both what they learned about themselves and the content that was presented during the course.

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