Citation

Producing peace, realizing human rights, endorsing empowerment: A critical comparative study of peace education in Jamaica and Peru

Abstract | Word Stems | Keywords | Association | Citation | Similar Titles



Abstract:

One legacy of the worldwide education revolution has been an increased focus on inclusion of marginalized populations into educational opportunities, often with emancipatory goals of individual/community empowerment and social transformation. This study critically examines the practice of peace and human rights education programs that have explicit goals of inclusion, empowerment, and/or transformation of marginalized populations in two developing countries. The authors explore ways in which the discourse surrounding the motivations as well as perceived successes and/or shortcomings of these programs may perpetuate processes of marginalization and exclusion that they ostensibly seek to do away with. To contribute to a richer understanding of the potential and limitations of education for empowerment, this paper presents a comparative case study of peace and human rights education in Jamaica and Peru that considers the following questions: How are goals of educational initiatives for peace and human rights defined by different stakeholders? How are outcomes of these programs evaluated and interpreted? In what ways are discursively formalized goals and outcomes contradicted or upheld through practice?

Informed by critical theories of education for peace and human rights (Bajaj, 2008; Waldron & Ruane, 2010) this study seeks to challenge assumptions about the nature of social structure, power, and agency as articulated through the practice of education for peace and human rights. Following Carspecken's (1996) critical epistemology, the authors take the perspective that knowledge cannot be taken for granted, as truth and power are intimately connected and "unequal power distorts truth claims" (21). By examining truth claims made by stakeholders in peace and human rights education, and by exploring the power relationships between implementers and beneficiaries of these educational programs, the authors seek to reveal inequalities that are hidden in the ambiguity and ambition of laudable goals of empowerment and transformation. The authors employ Carspecken's critical ethnographic approach, specifically incorporating methods of institutional participant-observation; narrative/life history interviews with policymakers, program developers and teacher trainers; and document analysis of program materials, policy documents, curricula, and web-based media.

This comparative study reveals these cases to be both contrasting and complementary. While serving to highlight cross-contextual similarities in the discourse of educational initiatives for peace and human rights, these cases illuminate different approaches to education for empowerment and transformation in practice. For example, common peace education approaches in Jamaica focus on a reduction of direct violence through conflict resolution skill building, whereas Peruvian practitioners look toward education to facilitate the creation of democratic social structures and institutions that embody human rights, such as participatory school climates. Both, however, rely upon rhetoric of empowerment to advance these ends. Although some literature suggests these approaches are vastly different, the authors have found through this study that a similar dissonance exists between discourse and practice in both circumstances. Furthermore, both scenarios suggest comparable delegitimizing effects on the targeted groups and communities that these programs purport to be helping.

By focusing on the institutional level of nongovernmental education providers, the authors contribute to a deeper, more critical understanding of the intermediary linkages between grassroots level action, civil society, and inter/national peace and human rights education discourse in the context of these two developing nations. The findings also demonstrate the need for a better understanding of local perceptions of peace, democracy, transformation, and empowerment in order to inform responsive programming and locally relevant mechanisms for critical evaluations of outcomes and critical reflection of practice. It is the authors’ initial conclusion that much idealism and lofty intentions get lost in translation as mediated between talk and action.

References
Bajaj, M. (Ed.). (2008). Encyclopedia of Peace Education. Information Age Publishing, Inc.

Carspecken, P. (1996). Critical Ethnography in Educational Research: A Theoretical and Practical Guide. New York: Routledge.

Waldron, F. & Ruane, B. (Eds.). (2010). Human Rights Education: Reflections on Theory and Practice. Dublin: Liffey Press.
Convention
All Academic Convention is the premier solution for your association's abstract management solutions needs.
Submission - Custom fields, multiple submission types, tracks, audio visual, multiple upload formats, automatic conversion to pdf.Review - Peer Review, Bulk reviewer assignment, bulk emails, ranking, z-score statistics, and multiple worksheets!
Reports - Many standard and custom reports generated while you wait. Print programs with participant indexes, event grids, and more!Scheduling - Flexible and convenient grid scheduling within rooms and buildings. Conflict checking and advanced filtering.
Communication - Bulk email tools to help your administrators send reminders and responses. Use form letters, a message center, and much more!Management - Search tools, duplicate people management, editing tools, submission transfers, many tools to manage a variety of conference management headaches!
Click here for more information.

Association:
Name: 56th Annual Conference of the Comparative and International Education Society
URL:
http://www.cies.us


Citation:
URL: http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p551420_index.html
Direct Link:
HTML Code:

MLA Citation:

Call-Cummings, Meagan. and Remstad, Margaret. "Producing peace, realizing human rights, endorsing empowerment: A critical comparative study of peace education in Jamaica and Peru" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the 56th Annual Conference of the Comparative and International Education Society, Caribe Hilton, San Juan, Puerto Rico, Apr 22, 2012 <Not Available>. 2014-12-12 <http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p551420_index.html>

APA Citation:

Call-Cummings, M. and Remstad, M. , 2012-04-22 "Producing peace, realizing human rights, endorsing empowerment: A critical comparative study of peace education in Jamaica and Peru" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the 56th Annual Conference of the Comparative and International Education Society, Caribe Hilton, San Juan, Puerto Rico <Not Available>. 2014-12-12 from http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p551420_index.html

Publication Type: Conference Paper/Unpublished Manuscript
Review Method: Peer Reviewed
Abstract: One legacy of the worldwide education revolution has been an increased focus on inclusion of marginalized populations into educational opportunities, often with emancipatory goals of individual/community empowerment and social transformation. This study critically examines the practice of peace and human rights education programs that have explicit goals of inclusion, empowerment, and/or transformation of marginalized populations in two developing countries. The authors explore ways in which the discourse surrounding the motivations as well as perceived successes and/or shortcomings of these programs may perpetuate processes of marginalization and exclusion that they ostensibly seek to do away with. To contribute to a richer understanding of the potential and limitations of education for empowerment, this paper presents a comparative case study of peace and human rights education in Jamaica and Peru that considers the following questions: How are goals of educational initiatives for peace and human rights defined by different stakeholders? How are outcomes of these programs evaluated and interpreted? In what ways are discursively formalized goals and outcomes contradicted or upheld through practice?

Informed by critical theories of education for peace and human rights (Bajaj, 2008; Waldron & Ruane, 2010) this study seeks to challenge assumptions about the nature of social structure, power, and agency as articulated through the practice of education for peace and human rights. Following Carspecken's (1996) critical epistemology, the authors take the perspective that knowledge cannot be taken for granted, as truth and power are intimately connected and "unequal power distorts truth claims" (21). By examining truth claims made by stakeholders in peace and human rights education, and by exploring the power relationships between implementers and beneficiaries of these educational programs, the authors seek to reveal inequalities that are hidden in the ambiguity and ambition of laudable goals of empowerment and transformation. The authors employ Carspecken's critical ethnographic approach, specifically incorporating methods of institutional participant-observation; narrative/life history interviews with policymakers, program developers and teacher trainers; and document analysis of program materials, policy documents, curricula, and web-based media.

This comparative study reveals these cases to be both contrasting and complementary. While serving to highlight cross-contextual similarities in the discourse of educational initiatives for peace and human rights, these cases illuminate different approaches to education for empowerment and transformation in practice. For example, common peace education approaches in Jamaica focus on a reduction of direct violence through conflict resolution skill building, whereas Peruvian practitioners look toward education to facilitate the creation of democratic social structures and institutions that embody human rights, such as participatory school climates. Both, however, rely upon rhetoric of empowerment to advance these ends. Although some literature suggests these approaches are vastly different, the authors have found through this study that a similar dissonance exists between discourse and practice in both circumstances. Furthermore, both scenarios suggest comparable delegitimizing effects on the targeted groups and communities that these programs purport to be helping.

By focusing on the institutional level of nongovernmental education providers, the authors contribute to a deeper, more critical understanding of the intermediary linkages between grassroots level action, civil society, and inter/national peace and human rights education discourse in the context of these two developing nations. The findings also demonstrate the need for a better understanding of local perceptions of peace, democracy, transformation, and empowerment in order to inform responsive programming and locally relevant mechanisms for critical evaluations of outcomes and critical reflection of practice. It is the authors’ initial conclusion that much idealism and lofty intentions get lost in translation as mediated between talk and action.

References
Bajaj, M. (Ed.). (2008). Encyclopedia of Peace Education. Information Age Publishing, Inc.

Carspecken, P. (1996). Critical Ethnography in Educational Research: A Theoretical and Practical Guide. New York: Routledge.

Waldron, F. & Ruane, B. (Eds.). (2010). Human Rights Education: Reflections on Theory and Practice. Dublin: Liffey Press.


Similar Titles:
Producing Neoliberal Citizens: Critical Reflections on Human Rights Education in Pakistan

Producing Neoliberal Citizens: Critical Reflections on Human Rights Education in Pakistan


 
All Academic, Inc. is your premier source for research and conference management. Visit our website, www.allacademic.com, to see how we can help you today.