Why did Paulo Freire argue that education is a force of liberation? How is his claim related to the foundations of education in the United States?

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pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In Freire's philosophy, people are oppressed because they do not understand the circumstances of their lives.  They have simply accepted the thing that they have been told by the dominant culture without evaluating what they have been told and the assumptions behind it.

Education can be liberating once people are truly learning (rather than having the "banking" approach imposed on them).  Once they learn to look at the assumptions of their society, they can see how they are being taught to accept their repression.

If you strip out the radical claims about oppression, ideas like Freire's are taught in education schools in the US.  Teachers are told over and over again that they need to make their students think, rather than giving them facts to memorize.  Teachers are told that they need to make their lessons relevant to the lives of their students.