Meet the new boss

Filling the pail

Is murder wrong because it is illegal or is murder illegal because it is wrong?

A few years back, I decided to read Pedagogy of the Oppressed by Paulo Freire. I didn’t expect to agree with the book because I knew it was a key text of educational progressivism: I was aware that Freire’s criticism of the ‘banking model’ was used by some to disparage explicit teaching. However, I initially found the book to be abstract and vague. Freire wrote hypnotically about the oppressors and the oppressed, without clearly identifying who these were, while focusing on the need to become ‘fully human’. So when I reached the following sentence, it was as if jolted from a dream:

“However, the restraints imposed by the former oppressed on their oppressors, so that the latter cannot resume their former position, do not constitute oppression.”

Freire goes on to expand on the…

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