In this provocative collection of essays with a distinctly critical and nuanced approach to how democracy is taught, learned, understood, and lived, authors from four continents share their visions on how democracy needs to be cultivated, critiqued, demonstrated, and manifested throughout the educational experience. The collective concern is how we actually do democracy in education. The essays argue that democracy must be infused in everything that happens at school: curriculum, extra-curricular activities, interaction with parents and communities, and through formal organization and structures. One of the book's central questions is: Are educators merely teaching students skills and kwledge to prepare them for the world of work, or is education more about encouraging students to thrive within a pluralistic society? This book reveals that democracy is an ethos, an ideology, a set of values, a philosophy, and a complex and dynamic terrain that is a contested forum for debate. From seasoned veterans to emerging scholars, these writers challenge the idea that there is only one type of democracy, or that democracy is defined by elections. Using a range of theoretical, conceptual, and methodological approaches, each essay makes a compelling case for how education can advance a more critical engagement in democracy that promotes social justice and political literacy for all. Diverse examples illustrate the theme of doing democracy. With its numerous models for teaching and learning to encourage critical thinking and engagement, this book is certain to be an invaluable resource to educators, researchers, students, and anyone with a passion for democratic ideals.
The Editors: Darren E. Lund is an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Education at the University of Calgary, Alberta, Canada, where his research examines social justice activism in schools, communities, and teacher education programs. Lund was a high school teacher for 16 years and formed the award-winning Students and Teachers Opposing Prejudice (STOP) program. For his doctoral research at the University of British Columbia, Lund won the 2002 Outstanding Dissertation Award from the American Educational Research Association (Curriculum Studies). He has published numerous articles and book chapters and is creator of the popular online Diversity Toolkit project. Darren has been recognized with a number of honors for his social justice work, including being named a Killam Resident Fellow, the Exemplary Multicultural Educator of the Year, and a Reader's Digest National Leader in Education. He recently co-edited a book with Paul R. Carr, entitled The Great White North? Exploring Whiteness, Privilege and Identity in Education (2007). Paul R. Carr is Assistant Professor in the Beeghly College of Education at Youngstown State University in Ohio. Originally from Toronto, he continues to conduct research on antiracism, equity, identity, and policymaking in education in, and on, Canada as well as in an international context. For 17 years Carr was a senior policy advisor in the Ontario government, primarily in the Ministry of Education, where he worked on a range of equity in education policies, programs, and initiatives. He completed his doctorate in the sociology of education at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education at the University of Toronto, with a thesis focusing on antiracism and transformational change in education. With Darren E. Lund, Carr recently co-edited a book entitled The Great White North? Exploring Whiteness, Privilege and Identity in Education (2007). He is presently involved in collaborative research on democracy in education and environmental education.