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Considering James Baldwin’s Extracurriculars: Notes on Teaching in Dangerous Times

20 January 2021 @ 9:30 am - 11:30 am

image of students in Daadab sitting  on the ground under a tree in front of a schoolhouse conversing. Also includes headshots of York University Professors Warren Crichlow and Mario DiPaolantonio who will be speaking at the monthly virtual colloquium series

For James Baldwin, the purpose of education is to create in a person the ability to ask questions of the society and undertake responsibility to change it “no matter what risk.” In this event, Crichlow considers Baldwin’s “extracurricular life” in public school as the experiential starting place for his thinking the tasks of education. Crichlow considers Baldwin’s peripatetic extracurricular life in Harlem, both in school environments and beyond in the Pentecostal pulpit, as the formative autobiographical ground he mined to address the paradoxes of education as a writer, activist, and teacher. He argues that Baldwin’s striking demands remain relevant signposts for the practice of teaching in today’s dangerous times.

Warren Crichlow is Associate Professor at York University Toronto, Canada where he teaches cultural studies and education. He is most recently a co-editor of Spaces of New Colonialism: Reading Schools, Museums and Cities in the Tumult of Globalization (Peter Lang, 2020). His most recent article (with Kass Banning) is A Grand Panorama: Isaac Julien, Frederick Douglass, and Lessons of the Hour, in Film Quarterly, Summer 2020, 11-24.

Mario Di Paolantonio is an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Education at York University in Toronto, Canada. Drawing on ethical philosophy and employing innovative methodologies, his international award-winning research explores how different memorial-artistic practices are employed to pedagogically reckon with historical wrongs.

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This talk is a part of the Reciprocal Learning in Times of Crisis monthly colloquium series on the intersections of refugee education, anti-Black racism, and COVID-19 in Canada and East Africa. The series is presented by York University’s Borderless Higher Education for Refugees (BHER) Project, Faculty of Education, and Centre for Refugee Studies.

Visit the event series website for a full listing of upcoming talks and to view videos of past talks.