Keynote Speakers

Dr. Carl James
Dr. Carl James, Director of The New York Centre for Education and Community has been a member of the Faculty of Education since 1993 and is cross-appointed with the graduate programs in the Department of Sociology and the School of Social Work.  He was formerly the Affirmative Action Officer at York University.
Carl James’ research and teaching interests include examination of issues of equity, particularly in relation to access to and inclusivity in schooling and education for marginalized and racialized youth. He has written on the educational, social, athletic and occupational experiences and attainment of Black youth; issues of identification/identity pertaining to race, ethnicity, gender, class, and immigrant status for racialized students; and the possibilities, challenges and limitations of suburban life for second-generation working class youth. Concerned with the complementary and contradictory nature of sports in the schooling and educational outcomes of racialized students, James researches how participation in sports affects the educational performance and attainment of racialized students, particularly Black males. He finds that the construction of Black males as athletes, in part informed by media representation and teacher expectations help to influence what these youth come to see as educational, social and economic possibilities for them in life. James’ publications include: Race in Play: The Socio-Cultural Worlds of Student Athletes (2005), Life at the Intersection: Community, Class and Schooling (2012); Seeing Ourselves: Exploring Race, Ethnicity and Culture (2010).

Ira Shor
Ira Shor's critical pedagogy has always been intimately involved with what it means to apply Freire in the classrooms of North America.  In this context, Shor has carefully worked to integrate critical notions of social critique with techniques of pedagogy in ways that create new educaitonal possibilities.  Such an education engages students in a way that subverts the exploitation of the subordinate classes, the manner in which social structures reproduce themselves in the everyday life of the classroom and the process by which authority regulates the poor.  Keeping these ideas in the front of his consciousness, Shor calls for (and employs in his own teaching) a dialogical pedagogy.  In such teaching the teacher starts with student experience - student responses to themes, texts and/or problems.  In this context the teacher engages students in a critical discourse about these issues.  Shor maintains a dialogical pedagogy disconfirms a teacher-centered, authoritarian form of teaching.  Indeed, teaching of this kind helps focus critical pedagogy's questioning of the status quo as it enacts its democratic dimension.  At the very core of his democratic, decedntralized pedagogy, Shor is dedicated to the proposition that the classroom is the venue for the construction of knowledge, not merely for its inculcation.  In an era of hyperbanking pedagogy, Shor challenges the relationship between information-transmitting teachers and passive student receivers.  Such challenges position him as the critical pedagogical champion of the democratic classroom.
Some of Shor's major works include:
* Critical Teaching and Everyday Life (1980)
* Culture Wars: School and Society in the Conservative Restoration (1986)
* A Pedagogy for Liberation, with Paulo Freire (1987)
* Freire for the Classroom: A Sourcebook for Liberatory Teaching (1987)
* Empowering Education (1992)
* When Students Have Power (1996)
* Critical Literacy in Action (1999)

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