Critical Curriculum Studies
Education, Consciousness, and the Politics of Knowing
By Wayne Au
Routledge – 2012 – 128 pages
Series: Critical Social Thought
Critical Curriculum Studies offers a novel framework for thinking about how curriculum relates to students’ understanding of the world around them. Wayne Au brings together curriculum theory, critical educational studies, and feminist standpoint theory with practical examples of teaching for social justice to argue for a transformative curriculum that challenges existing inequity in social, educational, and economic relations. Making use of the work of important scholars such as Freire, Vygotsky, Hartsock, Harding, and others, Critical Curriculum Studies, argues that we must understand the relationship between the curriculum and the types of consciousness we carry out into the world.
"This is an essential book for anyone interested in the politics of knowledge and
education that aims to be transformative rather than reproductive of current social conditions."—Choice
"Wayne Au brilliantly advances a theoretical framework for curriculum as liberation. Weaving together robust conceptions of consciousness, curriculum, learning, standpoint, and power, Au deepens how we think about curriculum, and brings into sharp focus the theoretical basis of real-life examples of counter-hegemonic multicultural curriculum."
--Christine E. Sleeter, Professor Emerita, College of Professional Studies, California State University, Monterey Bay
"If Wayne Au wanted to ‘revitalize’ curriculum studies---it worked! Articulating the complex simply, this unique and insightful contribution successfully explains the electric relationship between what we learn and what we do. This is a must read for those interested in knowledge and possibility."
--William H. Watkins, Professor, College of Education, University of Illinois at Chicago
"At a moment of crisis in the field, Critical Curriculum Studies decisively intervenes, proposing a return to a critical commitment firmly grounded in theory and yet crucially oriented to practice. Powerfully addressing fundamental questions regarding the relationship between educational knowledge and material reality, this impressive book renews the critical tradition and urgently enlivens the senses of praxis that can transform teaching and learning in the present."
--Noah De Lissovoy, Assistant Professor of Curriculum Studies, University of Texas at Austin
Series Introduction by Michael W. Apple
Wayne Au is an Assistant Professor in the Education Program at the University of Washington, Bothell Campus and is an editor for the social justice education magazine, Rethinking Schools.