chapter  7
20 Pages

Re-assembling for Practice in "Radical" Teacher Education

Some readers may consider it ironic that my concerns with teacher education practice should manifest themselves in the form of a theoretical study. Focusing on discursive constructions of pedagogy, authority and empowerment, power and knowledge, and ethics-constructions which do not even fit the common meanings attributed these termsmight seem inappropriate, unnecessarily esoteric. However, as I asserted in Chapter 1, in order to reflect on the discourses of critical and feminist pedagogy that shaped my practices I have had to position myself, at least partially, at least temporarily, outside of them. Foucault's work, not fortuitously, offered such a position. In particular, Foucault's declaration, "everything is dangerous," resonates with my own experiences in critical and feminist pedagogy. At the same time, although Foucault is frequently faulted for his lack of political and normative prescription (e.g., Fraser, 1989), his commitment to particular struggles against human suffering

-for example, in asylums and prisons-seems to have provided a position from which I can critically investigate critical and feminist discourses without feeling paralyzed in my work as a "specific intellectual" in teacher education. Having named the order of things we all inhabit, and having identified disciplinary power as characteristic of modern society, Foucault seems to have provided a perspective which helps explain some of the problems I have experienced during my own attempts to practice radical pedagogy.