Wednesday, 19 May 2010

academia - paulo freire

19 may 2010

i attended this lecture today at the school of education here. i would like to address here two points: 1. the content of the talk, and 2. the speaker's speaking skills.

University of Southampton, School of Education
seminar: "Humanistic science education from Paulo Freire's perspective: reflections for social justice"
speaker: Wildson dos Santos, University of Brasilia, Brazil
where and when: wed 19th may, 2010
12:45 - 13:45

1. the content: professor wildson dos santos is a published author of books and journal articles in, i supposed, the fields of chemistry and education, if they can be seen as two separate worlds. he says they belong together, as do society, and i do agree with him. he gave us an excellent overview of paulo freire's life and work, including his time in exile for political reasons and his academic achievements. the paulo freire bit was there to set the connection with his work as a chemistry teacher in brasilia. still today he sees the same problematic situation freire denounced taking place in the classrooms in brazil. paulo freire said so many times that the educator needs to work with the student, not only to feed him or her with whatever he believes is what the student needs or wants. education for freire is the only means to free us, to change society. i believe these teachers who resist dialogue are themselves still imprisoned in ideas that will take them nowhere. this is ok when it comes to one's individual way of leading their life, but when it is the kind of education we have to offer to our citizens the picture becomes worrying. professor dos santos talked a lot about how technology today is replicating a dominance and control over society. we in a way just receive and obey. this is very sad. the content of the talk was all absolutely relevant and interesting. by the way, i never thought i would be able to listen to anyone talking to me about chemistry and still find it meaningful. superb!!!

2. the speaker's speaking skills: i don't know much about professor dos santos, but from what i heard him speak i suppose he lives and teaches in brazil. i wondered for a moment about the level of difficulty to understand his brazilian accent some of the people present there had. i was in the comfortable zone of sharing with him the language 1 (portuguese), which has made all the talk as well as his portuguese accent not a problem at all to me. i actually loved it, the content and his language skills. this is academia, this is europe. everyday single day here, in every single classroom we mix up with researchers who come from countries sometimes we are not certain of their location or language, but we still have a lot to talk about, and that's what we concentrate on. language, altough it being english, is only a means, not an end in this setting. what really matters is the fantastic content professor dos santos had to share with us today. one positive point is that he had long texts in the slides, the information was all very relevant, and the talk was really, really, fantastic and well develop, with a smooth flow between the points. to me his english was fine. i am his fan.

i was very happy to attend such an enlightening talk. i will contact him later on. we chatted a little before his talk. people in the room apparently had a highly positive response to his talk. we were four brazilian students attending his talk: hilra, sabrina, renato, and me.


  1. Ahaquela menina era a Sabrina da comu? Aff, pq foi mesmo que tu so me apresentou ao renato, doidinha? eita

  2. eu JURAVA que tu conhecia a sabrina. neeem pensei em apresentar. alias, ate o renato eu pensava que tu conhecia, que tu tinha me falado dele outro dia. socoooorro!!! vou pedir desculpas a ela. so apresentei o renato porque perguntei ali e voce disse que nao conhecia, pra minha surpresa.

  3. ta ai um exemplo de vergonha publica. to chateada.