Political Science Education and the Profession

Pedagogy of the Privileged: Globalization, Identity, Belonging, and Empowerment

Jamie Frueh Bridgewater College
This paper explores ideas for bringing a global perspective into how undergraduates understand themselves and their relative positions in the world. Understanding of discourses of belonging should supplement how we teach discourses of diversity, equity, and inclusion. I draw on critical arguments and insights about pedagogy from Paulo Freire, Antonio Gramsci, and bell hooks to emphasize the political context and power implications not just of the knowledge we as professors convey, but also of the identities that define our relationships to that knowledge and to our students. I confront my own positions of privilege and discuss the implications of the political project of unsettling the complacency with which my students typically approach their own unearned advantages. I argue that discerning and analyzing social and political simplifications is a key component of a liberal education because it frees students to make more decisions with more freedom.