Critical pedagogy as Humanistic Marxist praxis: perspectives on solidarity, oppression, and revolution. E-mail de contato: sabrina. This article aims to explore the theoretical and philosophical basis of critical pedagogy in Marxist Humanism by analyzing the concept of revolutionary praxis and investigating the role of solidarity in overcoming oppression. More to the point, it attempts to examine the extensive theoretical work on Marxist Humanism and to find out how the visions about oppression, alienation, liberation and revolution are essentially linked to the concept of praxis, which is central to the critical pedagogy of Paulo Freire. Solidarity, which is usually presented tangentially to the discussion, becomes one of the key points of the argument, emphasizing totality and community when referring to liberation aimed to abolition and overcoming aufheben.
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Specifically, about the way both authors study the relation between these parts and the whole social aspects, the relation between the material action and social representation, the relation between sync and diachrony and finally the relation between scientific and ideological activities.
The results of such research prove the existence of real nearness between both thoughts and what was analyzed. Lucien Goldmann , well known French Marxist Sociologist, in his work Marxism and Human Sciences, highlights that the positive method in human sciences and the Marxist method have achieved an accurate definition with the term genetic structuralism by Jean Piaget.
The studies of De la Talle , Freitag , Habermas , Goldmann ; ; e Dongo-Montoya ; ; have shown such contribution. However, one must say that there are few works which are based on this contribution for a definition of sociological research to recover common points between Karl Marx and them. There were few works about sociological nature, by Piaget. Such studies have not only consisted of a simple application with psychological concepts to collective field, but also, an effort of building a new way of thinking about concrete sociological issues and finding common mechanisms between sociology and psychology.
Piaget has got interested as in sociology as psychology, since he used to understand that the development of such recognition area could contribute in a meaningful way for the development of sociology. As it is known, the genetic epistemology has as a support source psychogenetic as well as socio genetic investigations. On his sociological works, Piaget postulates that, although the differences between sociology and psychology both face the same basic problems, since they study the human practice - individual and collective - in their adaptation to physical and social environment.
Therefore, as in the individual behavior as collective behavior, certain basic problems present themselves in an analogous way: relation between the whole and the parts, relation between material actions and representations, relations between structure and genesis, role of scientific and ideological activities during the formation of individual and collective representations science and ideology.
We believe the convergences when analyzing these subjects are not at random, but they come from a common starting point. On the same way psychology was led to understand that data from awareness do not explain anything in a casual way, and the only casual explanation must rebuild from awareness to practices, it means to the action, sociology, finding the relativity of over structure towards to infrastructure, does not make use of ideological explanations, but makes use of action explanation: actions taken in common sense, in order to assure life in a social group according to a certain material way, concrete actions and techniques, which extend into collective representations, in lieu of deriving from them, concerning applications Piaget, , p.
The implications of such representations, either pre logical or almost symbolic like the varied ideologies , either when they coordinate logically, like in the rational collective representations scientific thought , their explanations must forward, at the end, to practices or human actions. While Piaget tried to overcome, in psychology area, the dichotomy installed for centuries between awareness and practice, Marx tried to overcome, in sociology area, the dichotomy between social awareness and material action.
However, it is essential to highlight that, for both authors, the overcoming of such dichotomy demands recognizing that the evolution of social relations and the awareness do not happen in a linear and mechanical way.
It is about theoretical points and basic epistemologies that we are able to begin finding closeness between the thought of these great authors. Relation between the Whole and the Part: the relational conception and the non-dissociation - person-society. The classic sociological theses by Comte and Durkheim represent a meaningful progress towards to conceptions that had as a basis the medieval creationism and the innate conception of human nature.
However, the advance of sociological reflection by these authors has put the person and the society in a unilateral determination of the whole social. So, observing and analyzing the concrete social realities in a whole, it was considered the person and their mental behavior as results only from action social totality and not from an active reality, which could interfere in building the whole. The new relation established between person and society has led to fundamental problems of sociological explanation, such as: if the person constitutes the element, and the society constitutes the whole, how does the whole modify the elements by the ones they are made of?
Where do these preexisted characters come from? Among the presented solutions, concerning the relation between person and the whole, it is possible to recognize three, with nuances which characterize them.
First, it is seen the atomistic scheme, which rebuilds the whole adding properties of elements. Second, the solution presented by Durkheim may be characterized as an emergency scheme, whereby the whole is not the result of sum of elements supposedly structuring, but, on the contrary, the whole adds a group of new properties to the elements structured by it. Still, one question must be answered: where do the new properties come from? Do these properties emerge spontaneously from grouping the elements?
How does the second point of view explain the collective awareness? It is interesting to nightlight that, this second point of view, although it rejects the individual awareness when explaining the whole, it appeals to human spirit to explain the collective awareness. So, Durkheim sociology, when denying to Psychology the origin of collective awareness, ends up attributing to itself such origin. The collective awareness, heir to innate powers or a priori to spirit, presents, with effect, this inconvenience of keeping an awareness, or an unconscious focus, it means, inheriting from this substantialism and from this spiritual causality, whereby sociology only dispenses with psychology, to transfer all its responsibility to itself: the transposition of positions is apparent and consists of simple displacement of genetic problems, without real renovation Piaget, , p.
Third, the relativism scheme or concrete sociology postulates that the whole social is not, neither a group of previous elements, nor a new entity that emerges spontaneously from the reunion of elements, but it is a system of relations, in which each relation engenders a transformation of its terms.
For Piaget, defending the relations or interactions as a basis of social organization, different from many critics thought, means reaffirming a dialectic and relational position. According to this author, the individualist character of some sociology, which also appeals to interaction, derives much more from insufficient psychological analysis than from the concept of interaction. So, according to him, when some authors explain the social life, they do it through elementary psychology that attributes to the person a pre made logic or a collection of permanent instincts, without observing that the entities considered by them as basic individual facts, depend on the deeper interactions.
They do not meet pre formed, neither in instincts nor external data of social environment. The common defect for sociological explanations is aiming at constituting, beforehand, sociology of awareness or even of speech, while in social life or individual life, the thought proceeds from action and the society is essentially a system of actions, whose elementary interactions consist of actions modifying each other, according to certain laws of organization or balance: technical manufacturing actions, moral and law actions of collaboration or coercion and oppression.
Intellectual communication actions, of common research or mutual critic, briefly of collective construction and of correspondence of operations Piaget, , p. Concerning solidarity between person and society and about the non-dissociation of the whole and the part, we can observe an analogue statement by Marx, which leads us to the first closeness between these authors. Above all, what matters is avoiding the idea that the society is something abstract that faces the person.
The person is a social being. The manifestation of life - even when it does not show directly like a communal manifestation, made in association with other men - is a manifestation and affirmation of social life. The individual human life and the specie-life are not different things, while the way of existence of individual life is a more specific one or more general of specie-life, or the existence way of specie-life is a more specific way or more general of individual life Marx, According to this author, the understanding of such unit would be the basis for understanding the Marxist sociology, whose goal of study is the society, but the society conceived in terms of relations or non-dissociable interaction.
So, for the third point of view, the interactionist or relational, conflicts between sociology and psychology are not possible to exist.
Both subjects have contributing, on the contrary, to clear up the two additional aspects - individual and social - each of the practices by the person in the society; it is about fight, cooperation, or any intermediate variety of common behavior.
Therefore, for Piaget, each social relation or social interaction constitutes a totality in itself, producer of new characteristics and transforming the person in their mental structure. From interaction between two people to totality constituted by the group of relations between people from the same society, there is, therefore, continuity and, definitely, the conceived totality appears not like sum of people, neither a reality superimposed to people, but from a system of interactions modifying these ones in their own structure Piaget, , p.
As known, for Piaget, the awareness and the several ways of individual representations settle their roots in sensorial motor schemes. According to Piaget, therefore, the conception essentially concrete by Karl Marx provides a singular better view than the idealist conceptions.
The merit of Karl Marx, is, having distinguished in social phenomenon an effective infrastructure and an oscillating superstructure between the symbolism and appropriate awareness, in the same meaning and Marx make it explicitly where the psychology is obliged to distinguish between real behavior and awareness.
The substructure are the effective actions or its operations, consisting of work and of techniques and linking people in society to nature: material relations, says Marx, one must understand that from the most material practices production, there is an exchange between people and things, it means, non- dissociable between active people and objects. In contrast to idealist thinkers, for him, the first assumption of entire human history is the existence of live human beings, the first historical act, which distinguished itself from animals, is not the fact of thinking, but the act of producing in their ways of living the work.
We can highlight the materialist and dialectical thought of Marx when criticizing the German philosophy idealism from century XIX, in his classic work The German Ideology.
And if, in all ideology, people and their relations are shown inverted like a dark camera, such phenomenon has happened due to its historical process of life Marx, a , p. The explanation of social development presents difficulties that obey to the need of taking into account the synchronic analysis, which considers inter - relations between parts and whole in a certain balance structure , and the diachronic analysis, which considers the transformations that occur in the passage from a state to another genesis.
If we take into account both analyses, the question to be answered is the following: May the social development be considered as a tendency to a terminal balance, like in the mental evolution, or does it consist only of a variation of phases, sort of balanced, or imbalance, sort of deep? The different theoretical solutions, which tried the integrative analysis of structure and genesis, have shown tendencies to favor or to sacrifice one of them and, with that, to present dualist solutions.
For Piaget, there are two reasons for the tendency to epistemological dualism. The first one is related to the content of social reality that is not fully composed or organized, while it participates of fortuitous and disorder, in which the sociological thought would have to adapt itself. The second one refers to causal and implicative nature about social facts.
The causal explanations refer to material actions that join the transformation process of the states genesis ; and the implicative one refers to the reached balance, which is expressed in the rules and social norms.
Therefore, the second cause of difficulty for sociological explanation is found in the passage from causal relations to implicative relations.
The existence of fortuitous and imbalance in the development of societies take us to a hard challenge in order to integrate diachrony and sync. It would be easy to think of diachronic and synchronic synthesis if the group of social facts were submitted to laws of a guided evolution or a gradual balance, without disorders or imbalances.
It was the intention of Comte and Spencer, builders of great evolutionary laws, wanted to reach, but such tries were considered inconsistent. Face to these inconsistent solutions, Piaget reminds that the development of individual thought happens through processes of imbalance and successive conflicts until reaching a state of balance, sort of stable. On the same way, in the domain of social development, this author agrees with Marx when he postulates the existence of imbalance and conflicts, sort of deeper, before constituting a social organization founded in values of equity and social justice.
The Marxist conception from a chain of economic facts to a stable state of final balance shows, the existence of fights and continuous oppositions; so it is conceivable the history as a succession of not so deep imbalances, preceding further equilibrium Piaget, , p.
For Piaget, social facts of implicative nature - like the rules, the values and the signals - come from a common action, directed over the nature, although these three social facts result from relations that exceed the causality and constitute implications. Something that really matters at this moment is asking: How do various sociological theories link causal connections to implications? Piaget reminds that psychological theories oscillate between causality and implication, when get close to organicist type, logic type and operatory type.
The same way, sociological explanations oscillate from resource to material factors population, geographic area and economic production , to collective awareness and to operatory explanation which connects the implication relations to causal actions. The social causality reduce itself to social coronation, which is the pressure from groups on the people; the implication refers to collective awareness, which are the representations produced by social life norms, values, signs, symbols.
The inherent causality to action of the social whole over the people and the system of implications from collective awareness builds a simultaneous whole.
According to Piaget, there is an inconsistent explanation by Durkheim, which is the fact that, from the beginning, the implications and the material causes are put in the same plan, instead of proceeding to an analysis of many types and levels of interactions, which can be heterogeneous and present varied relations among their elements of causality and their elements of implications.
Such affective tendencies or interest tendencies are permanent and represent not only causes, but also, values implications. So, for Pareto, like Durkheim, causes and implications are given, from the beginning, in constant proportion. The start point for this Marxist explanation is causal: the production factors while interaction between human work and nature, while interaction between people in their productive activity, that determine the first forms of social group.
However, even from the beginning, the implicative element shows connected to values of work. The work is an action and the effectiveness of these accomplished actions in common, determines a normative element.
And the implication develops gradually, from a preliminary causal system, which duplicates, but does not replace it. With the society being differentiate in classes, and with many diverse relations of cooperation inside a class , or fight and coaction, the norms, values and signals including ideologies , diverse super structures take place Piaget, , p.
For Piaget, the Marxist model is placed, from the beginning, over an operatory place: the behavior of people in society determining its representation and not the opposite. Such observation could conduct to the thought of Marxist model depreciates the elements of implications which characterize super structure, opposing to causality that characterizes the infrastructure.
But this is not totally true, if we observe the way Marx interprets social equilibrium reached by society when the socialism is instituted. In this way of social organization, the rules and moral rational values play important and decisive role. So, the cultural values, while manifestation of implications, have an increasing role in social interactions. Consequently, in contrast to Durkheim and Pareto, who merge themselves in only one, causality and normative implications, the Marxist explanation dissociates synchronic and diachronic, differentiates the respective parts of causality and implication, in many levels of social interactions that it distinguishes.
The operatory explanation would be the common basis between Piaget and Marx, since both authors believe that the organization and reorganization of human action individual and collective go through conflicts and deep imbalances until reaching equilibrium states, relatively stable.
Besides that, for both, the relations of implications become more and more important while the reached equilibriums become more stable.
The sociologist Lucien Goldmann , in a clear way, uses this theory to show the transformations that take place in societies. The possibility of reaching objectivity when interpreting physical and social world depends on the activity of the thought which overcomes human tendency to consider external reality from expectations and interests of human being or their own social group. The sociological analysis of development for collective thought leads to results concomitant of individual thought development.
Therefore, in both developments we can highlight three meaningful moments. On the individual development field, the first moment occurs when the child builds systems of practical actions, which coordinate themselves in a flexible way and allow reaching a start of non-concentration or objectivity.
This is the moment of finishing for practical intelligence or sensory motor and practical construction of real world. The second moment starts when he child reaches representative activity and assimilates the reality with their own point of view.
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