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Towards a pedagogy of listening: teaching and learning from life stories of human rights violations

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In response to the task of designing curriculum that helps youth engage thoughtfully with digital stories of human rights violations, the authors articulate the central tenets of a pedagogy of listening that draws upon elements of oral history, concepts of witnessing and testimony, the work on listening of Dewey, Freire and Rinaldi and the philosophy of listening. These tenets are explored in relation to the five curricular units for secondary schools that they produced as part of a large oral history project that documents the life stories of Montrealers displaced by war, genocide and other human rights violation. The pedagogy of listening aims to: promote more democratic relations, build a listening community and foster close and attentive listening, develop an ethics of listening, support critical reflexive practice and movement towards social action, explore the multitude of listenings, explore listening as curation and foster students’ historical imaginations.

Keywords: curriculum guides; oral history; refugees; secondary education

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: December 1, 2013

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