Bell Hooks Teaching Critical Thinking

A reasonable response to that, however, is that seeing worthwhile intellectual work as only being about linear progression in the direction of the never-said-before, never-heard-before favours a relationship to knowledge that evaluates it primarily in relation to other texts rather than in relation to lives, and misunderstands how we actually relate in practice to hard critical insights about the world. Once you’ve read a couple of good ones, the amount of truly new insight you’ll find is subsequent good ones that you read will be incremental rather than exponential.Yet in writing, as in practices of critical pedagogy, reading a piece of wisdom once does not mean that immediately and automatically informs our embodied practices forever after. That’s how enacting critical politics at the level of the everyday works.

The key premise of the book is that we need to liberate the students’ minds from all types of oppression levied upon it: There are a lot of videos and podcasts of bell hooks, including those she delivered in New School in New York.

The book itself embodies an important insight into how we learn.

It would certainly be a reasonable reaction to this book to point out that there isn’t a lot in it that is both substantive and new.

Her earlier two books on this topic made significant contributions to critical, anti-racist, feminist pedagogy.

This is a somewhat different book – it has been awhile since I last looked at the earlier two, so I may be misrepresenting the difference a bit, but I’m pretty sure it’s fair to say that rather than an effort to open up significant new territory and propose innovative ideas like , this one is more a tool for stimulating the inevitable cycle of reflection and action that is part of making any critical understanding material rather than abstract.

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