Starting from Nina: The Politics of Learning

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Rosemary Donegan, Anita Shilton Martin, D’arcy Martin
1978 | 32 min

The film explores how a number of women teachers, community educators and activists, adapted critical educational  and social-change ideas developed by the Brazilian educator, Paulo Freire. Organized around a series of interviews with Freire, the film showcases three situations where Freirean methodologies were being utilized in Canada in the late 1970s. The first is a public school classroom of young Portuguese and Black children in West end Toronto and involves teaching through the actual experience of the children’s working class and immigrant experiences. The second section focuses on learning English as a second language for a group of newly unionized Portuguese women cleaners who worked in downtown Toronto office buildings at night. And the third section looks at applying Freirean methods to  white collar unionized workers and their workplace challenges. Filmed in private homes, classrooms and union meetings, the film examines how people learn.  It reflects on the larger “politics of learning” by challenging existing curricular literacy materials and substituting more respectful and change oriented alternatives.

Producers-directors: Rosemary Donegan, Anita Shilton Martin, D’arcy Martin and consultant Paolo Freire

Development Education Centre, Toronto, and Icarus Films, New York, 1978

https://archive.org/details/startingfromninathepoliticsoflearning

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