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We Want to Do More Than Survive: Abolitionist Teaching and the Pursuit of Educational Freedom

Regular price $ 16.00

by Bettina Love

Beacon Press

2/4/2020, paperback

SKU: 9780807028346

 

** Black Panther/BLA Political Prisoner Jalil Muntaqim told us that when this book first came out, it was being passed around among the prisoners so much that the spine was broken. If that's not a solid recommendation, we don't know what is. -- Burning Books

Drawing on personal stories, research, and historical events, an esteemed educator offers a vision of educational justice inspired by the rebellious spirit and methods of abolitionists.

Drawing on her life's work of teaching and researching in urban schools, Bettina Love persuasively argues that educators must teach students about racial violence, oppression, and how to make sustainable change in their communities through radical civic initiatives and movements. She argues that the US educational system is maintained by and profits from the suffering of children of color. Instead of trying to repair a flawed system, educational reformers offer survival tactics in the forms of test-taking skills, acronyms, grit labs, and character education, which Love calls the educational survival complex.

To dismantle the educational survival complex and to achieve educational freedom--not merely reform--teachers, parents, and community leaders must approach education with the imagination, determination, boldness, and urgency of an abolitionist. Following in the tradition of activists like Ella Baker, Bayard Rustin, and Fannie Lou Hamer, We Want to Do More Than Survive introduces an alternative to traditional modes of educational reform and expands our ideas of civic engagement and intersectional justice.

Reviews:

"A useful rejoinder, half a century on, to Paulo Freire's Pedagogy of the Oppressed; deserving of a broad audience among teachers and educational policymakers." -- Kirkus Reviews

"This text is helpful for gaining a better grasp of oppression and what teachers can do about it." -- Library Journal

"Offering readers a profoundly fresh perspective on teaching, Bettina Love breaks new ground. Using both the language of critical thinking and radical resistance, this book challenges and dares us all to teach for justice." --bell hooks

"This much-needed book is at once personal, analytic, poetic, exacting, and soaring. Dr. Bettina Love brilliantly weaves, in artisanal and scholarly fashion, the threads and fabric of history, the present, and the possible future. She weaves in a way that we are invited to understand what moving past survival means, in personal, communal, and nation-building ways. This book is a call to building a different future: one made for freedom." --Leigh Patel, author of Decolonizing Educational Research

About the Author:

Bettina L. Love is an award-winning author and an associate professor of educational theory and practice at the University of Georgia. Her research focuses on how teachers and schools working with parents and communities can build communal, civically engaged, antiracist, antihomophobic, and antisexist educational, equitable classrooms. A sought-after public speaker on a range of topics, including hip-hop education, Black girlhood, queer youth, hip-hop feminism, art-based education to foster youth civic engagement, and issues of diversity, Love has also provided commentary for news outlets including NPR, the Guardian, and the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.