a follow-up organization of maiz, an independent association of and
for migrant women*, existing since 1994 with the aim to improve the
living and working situation of migrants in Austria and to promote
their political and cultural participation as well as to bring about
a change in existing, unjust social conditions. (www.maiz.at)
a place of critical educational work, of exchange, of contradiction
and of collective organization. We work i.a. in the field of adult
education with migrant and refugee women* who have the least
run basic education courses, including literacy courses, preparatory
courses for primary education, preparatory courses for high school
entrance, professional education or universities. We also provide
education and trainings for teachers, also migrant and refugee
women*. In conjunction with and in addition to the courses, many
processes and projects, discussions and actions arise at this
location. In the development and research projects, approaches and
theories are further thought, processed, interwoven, developed and
brought into relation to experience.
work in a space characterized by experience and repeated
ascertainment of the diminishing rule of law, a lack of social
security and participation, and dwindling economic and social
justice. We work in a space that is developing under neoliberal
capitalism and its migration regimes to an ever larger space, in
which the consolidation of what has been there for a long time takes
place: the outside of fundamental rights.
course learners are those who are not considered to be entitled to
equal rights. In this space, we design a pedagogical practice for
re-reading and re-writing the world – and in the sense of
pedagogical reflexivity (migration pedagogy / Paul Mecheril) – also
for re-reading our practice as teachers, developing from
critical-emancipatory (pedagogy of the oppressed / Paulo Freire; bell
hooks,etc.), anti-racist, queer-deconstructive and decolonial
are developing and implementing a pedagogical practice that aims to
contribute to emancipation, transformation of reality and reduction
of structural discrimination and violence. Our education work
therefore promotes the critical acquisition of the German language
and the knowledge of the dominant society. From our position as
migrant*self-organizations we ask: Which truths does a statement or a
picture convey? Which knowledge is considered to be true and why? How
is it possible to produce the less truth possible in critical
education? We regard language in its dialectical relation to reality
– as a normative instance, the constitutive one for the
preservation of power relations, but also as a reality-constituting
action. Because we name the world and co-create it, we can change it
too – we learned a long time ago and continue learning in the
present. We read and think critical pedagogy in the tradition of
educação popular from
our perspective as migrant women* in Europe.
on Paulo Freire, we mean that learners as part of an emancipatory
educational work should have the opportunity to perceive and
problematize social, political and economic contradictions in order
to act against the oppressive elements of reality. An emancipatory
and critical educational work is not exhausted in the revelation of
reality. It leads to organization of a practice of change. Critical
educational work demands also structural changes.
despite everything we experience, despite the repeated mantras of the
lack of alternatives of the current socio-political economic reality,
there is knowledge about the possibility
of changing the ruling violent, murderous order.
approach as a strategic response
the neoliberalization of educational work, we choose the work with
poetry as one of our learning and teaching (resistance) strategies.
since educational policy is increasingly prioritizing efficient
training for the market, for the neoliberal capitalist market.
since educational programs aim to promote individualized forms of
self-efficacy and convey skills that should lead to inclusion – in
precarious, exploitative systems.
neoliberal measures: a situation, also in the basic education, not
only in Austria. Educational technocrats measure the field, attest
deficiencies, present strategies, determine success indicators,
prescribe descriptors and learning outcomes.
prefer to work with poetry.We
prefer to practice metaphorical thinking, abstractions. To become
more intellectually independent from hegemonic politics.
the project POETA and in dialog with the partner organizations we
have the possibility to explore, develop, test, reflect, implement
and disseminate a poetry approach to literacy processes.