A dialogue in support of social justice

Praxis 23 (10):216-233 (2019)
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Abstract

There are kinds of dialogue that support social justice and others that do the reverse. The kinds of dialogue that supports social justice requires that anger be bracketed and that hiding in safe spaces be eschewed. All illegitimate ad hominem/ad feminem attacks are ruled out from the get-go. No dialogical contribution can be down-graded on account of the communicator’s gender, race, or religion. As well, this social justice communicative approach unapologetically privileges reason in full view of theories and strategies that might seek to undermine reasoning as just another illegitimate form of power. On the more positive side, we will argue that social justice dialogue will enhanced by a kind of “communicative upgrading” that amplifies “person perception,” foregrounds the impersonal forces within our common social spaces rather than the “baddies” within, and orients the dialogical trajectory toward the future rather than the past. Finally, we will argue that educators have a pressing responsibility to guide their students through social justice dialogue so that their contributions contribute to the amelioration of injustice, rather than rendering the terrain more treacherous.

Author's Profile

Susan Gardner
Capilano University

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