CHANDRA D. L. WARING AND SAMIT DIPON BORDOLOI A growing body of feminist and critical pedagogy literature positions teaching as transformative, for both teachers and students, as the classroom has the potential to become a site of exploration, liberation, and empowerment (hooks 16). The classroom is indeed a powerful social tool that can serve as a catalyst for personal development and social change on many levels. Scholarship, however, has also documented the noteworthy power dynamic between privileged students and professors of underprivileged backgrounds. When such faculty employ critical and/or feminist pedagogical practices, students can begin to question the professor's credentials rather than the unequal institutional arrangements of society (Rodriguez 485). We intend to acknowledge the precarious position of graduate instructors from underprivileged backgrounds who teach about power and privilege to students who embody varying levels of privilege through race, gender, class, nationality, and linguistic ability--in other words, students who benefit from the existing power structure. In this article, we cap- ture the complexity of being a marginalized individual with institutional authority who encourages students to question all levels of power; simultaneously, we are acutely aware of the social implications of students challenging our authority, our intellectual aptitude, and
Feminist Teacher – University of Illinois Press
Published: Jun 27, 2012
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