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Critical hope and university work experiences: two open access articles

Since my book Creative Universities: Reimagining Education for Global Challenges and Alternative Futures was published, I have written two further journal articles that build out key themes from the book. The first one, published in Pedagogy, Culture and Society in 2023, elaborates on the theme of critical hope, while the second article, published earlier this year in Progress in Development Studies, develops the idea of work-experiential pedagogies in International Development further. Both are available open access and I have pasted short summaries below.

Teaching Critical Hope with Creative Pedagogies of Possibilities

Pedagogy, Culture and Society, March 2023

How can we teach critical hope, amidst contemporary challenges that seem intractable, within neoliberal educational institutions that work to foreclose transformative pedagogies and through academic critique that can result in cynicism and disillusionment among students? Here, I draw on the writings of Paolo Freire, J.K. Gibson-Graham and Sarah Amsler, as well as long-term research at the University of Sussex in the UK, to propose a critical-creative pedagogy that enables students to better understand global challenges and to imagine alternative responses to them. Consisting of whole-person learning, the use of arts and design methods and praxis, this pedagogy aims to nurture students’ critical hope. In this article I sketch an outline of its elements, advance philosophical arguments for their importance and share brief examples from my own teaching in International Development to show how it can be enacted in classrooms. Critical-creative pedagogy necessitates generative theorising that allows pedagogies of possibilities to emerge and grow, critical engagement with the neoliberal education system to find spaces for action, and a radical understanding of pedagogical creativity. It results in practices of pedagogical prefiguration that enable students, and educators, to collectively imagine heterodox responses to contemporary social, economic and ecological challenges.

Read the full article here.

University Work Experiences in International Development: Expanding Locations, Spaces and Pathways

Progress in Development Studies, February 2024

How can university work experiences contribute to reframing International Development from expert saviourism rooted in colonial legacies into a project of social justice and global solidarity? In this article, I propose the design of work-experiential pedagogies that integrate practical work experiences with critical theoretical teaching and an emphasis on students’ experiential knowledge. Such pedagogies call for an expansion of the forms of university work experiences, challenging students to reflect on their manifold personal and institutional locations, to explore the diverse spaces in which work experiences can take place and to experiment with multiple pathways for change. My proposal draws on teaching examples and the journeys of three students at Sussex University in the UK.


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