International Association of Educators   |  ISSN: 1554-5210

Original article | International Journal of Progressive Education 2012, Vol. 8(3) 48-61

Promoting Active Citizenship through the arts and youth: Canadian Youth-Led Organizations as Beacons of Hope and Transformation

Brad J. Porfilio, & Julie A. Gorlewski

pp. 48 - 61   |  Manu. Number: ijpe.2012.043

Published online: October 15, 2012  |   Number of Views: 7  |  Number of Download: 27


Abstract

This essay details the pedagogical and cultural work of two youth-led organizations situated  in Canada - Beat Nation and 411 Initiative for Change. Through the narratives generated by interviews with several of the organizations' artists and founders, the organizations‘ pedagogical work generated in cyberspace, and through artists' music, multi-media presentations, and speaking engagements in schools across Canada, we build on the critical project of reconceptualizing how youth express their awareness of what gives rise to salient social issues, such as racism, violence, environmental degradation, poverty, and gender inequalities, and how they work actively with other citizens to extend social and political rights for all. Youth-led organizations such as 411 for Change and Beat Nation seek to change the discursive realities and possibilities of hip hop by exercising it as a means of critical pedagogy. This approach supports the educational goals related to active citizenship, including solidarity, valuing the identities of minoritized populations, and a sense of belonging. We argue the organizations promote active citizenship by working to eliminate oppression confronting the global community, by guiding youth to understand the reasons for social inequality as well as the importance of working collectively to challenge injustice, and by embracing pro-social values and dispositions consistent with democracy, fairness, and equity.

Keywords: youth-led organizations, active citizenship, critical pedagogy


How to Cite this Article?

APA 6th edition
Porfilio, B.J. & Gorlewski, J.A. (2012). Promoting Active Citizenship through the arts and youth: Canadian Youth-Led Organizations as Beacons of Hope and Transformation . International Journal of Progressive Education, 8(3), 48-61.

Harvard
Porfilio, B. and Gorlewski, J. (2012). Promoting Active Citizenship through the arts and youth: Canadian Youth-Led Organizations as Beacons of Hope and Transformation . International Journal of Progressive Education, 8(3), pp. 48-61.

Chicago 16th edition
Porfilio, Brad J. and Julie A. Gorlewski (2012). "Promoting Active Citizenship through the arts and youth: Canadian Youth-Led Organizations as Beacons of Hope and Transformation ". International Journal of Progressive Education 8 (3):48-61.

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