Beyond Decoding: Political Cartoons in the Classroom

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Geographers and other social scientists have argued that cartoons can play an effective role in enhancing the classroom experience and foster the development of critical thinking skills. We confirm the case for the use of cartoons in the classroom while arguing that recent writing underestimates the potential of this medium as a teaching resource. Our argument is that this medium can and should be used in teaching theoretical and conceptual debates in geography. We use recent cartoons by the South African cartoonist Zapiro to provide a framework for how this can be achieved in the classroom.

Keywords: Africa; Political cartoons; political geography

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Department of Geography, The University of Sheffield, UK,Department of Geography, University of the Free State, South Africa, 2: Department of Geography, Memorial University of Newfoundland, Canada,Department of Geography, Environmental Management and Energy, University of Johannesburg, South Africa

Publication date: February 1, 2011

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