As an educator who is committed to social justice, I bring certain values and political commitments to the classroom. The counter-hegemonic voices that I bring into the classroom in the form of constructs, readings, assignments, discussions, and visual culture challenge more often than confirm students’ world-views and assumptions. The question that arises for me is whether I am silencing students’ voices through my teaching practices. Does my support of dialogic articulations and interests constitute privileging one “truth” or discourse over another? If so, am I using dialogue as a rhetorical device to persuade or to indoctrinate my students according to beliefs that I personally find emancipating? These are certain beliefs that, frankly, some students in my courses have met with various acts of resistance, ranging from disapproving silence to outright rejection. In this investigation, I reflect on the limits of dialogue in tension within my own teaching, and explore the function of dialogue and dialogism in relationship to pedagogy.
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