A few weeks ago I shared my first publication. Now I feel so grateful to share my second in the Journal of Critical Thought and Praxis! This second article is meaningful to me because of the topics explored and the work through which it was created.
Thanks to my colleagues, peers, and mom who supported me in writing this. Thank you to all Palestinian and Israeli youth musicians, artists, and singers for being you.
“Because love is an act of courage, not of fear, love is a commitment to others. No matter where the oppressed are found, the act of love is commitment to their cause–the cause of liberation.” – Paulo Freire, Pedagogy of the Oppressed
“What Palmer speaks of is a remnant of traditional education, in which teacher is all knowing and student is an empty novice awaiting her or his teacher’s fulfillment of knowledge (Dewey, 2007; Freire, 1970). And yet I believe the “need” of the educator to be unquestioned and infallible in all respects of knowledge and understanding not only disables the dialogical nature of horizontal learning (Freire, 1970) with and from students, furthering a hierarchy within learning which recreates the systems of oppression existent in society, but as well prevents the incredibly transformative need for an educator to look inward to question and reflect upon herself. To co-create liberatory educational spaces (1994) as bell hooks1 speaks of, educators are not exempt from the internal and critical search for understanding of self and community, but rather are called to this place in the pursuit of (e)quality of education.” (Gottesman, 2017, p. 104)
“Palmer’s quote transfers beyond a general context within teaching, but as well to a very particular one: the deconstructing, re-examining, and relearning of what role nationalism and identity plays in our lives and within education, not just as a place of learning but as a space in which to learn to live. One could assert that music education is included here as well. After all, music education is not simply learning how to play one’s instrument and how to read notes, but in addition it is exercising our expressive outlets in which to share our deepest selves, individually and collectively, while exploring how we interpret the creations of others. When we enter the realm of creation in musical spaces, educators must address questions of content, structure, and pedagogy. When we build spaces of learning in music, we must include “our humility toward our own perspective and our capacity to listen to the perspectives of others” (Allsup & Shieh, 2012), from the type of music that enters this space to the realities and musical traditions of our students. This required “wide- awakeneness” as Maxine Greene (1995) speaks of enables educators in musical spaces to question alongside their students what is perceived as unquestionable, to reimagine what is thought of as permanent, to in the words of Palmer, “escape fear’s paralysis and enter a state of grace where encounters with otherness will not threaten us but will enrich our work and our lives” (Parker, 2010, p.57). ” (Gottesman, 2017, p. 104)
Towards better questioning and transformative loving,
P.S. This will also be translated into Arabic and Hebrew as well within the coming months, so please stay tuned!