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Social change through an urban sport for development initiative? Investigating critical pedagogy through the voices of young people

Journal Contribution - Journal Article

This article explores the pedagogy of an urban Sport for Development
(SfD) initiative in Belgium through the voices of young people. We draw
on the critical pedagogy of Paulo Freire, and use qualitative research
methods (i.e. observations, informal conversations, in-depth interviews
and sharing circles) over a three-year period, to analyse the initiative’s
actual pedagogical practice with key Freirean concepts (i.e. ‘banking
education’, ‘dialogue’ and ‘dialogical action’) and virtues (e.g. respect for
people’s knowledge, rejection of discrimination, caring for people). The
findings reveal the presence of several Freirean virtues, emerging
dialogue and, for some, action thought. Still, the SfD initiative remains at
considerable distance from fully-fledged critical pedagogy. The young
people in the SfD initiative nonetheless experience it as a space where
they can be themselves, feel at home, gain respect, can learn to reflect
and form opinions, and are temporarily freed from daily struggles such
as discrimination. We discuss several pathways that could foster the
capacity to organise and deliver a programme beyond emerging
dialogue and action.
Journal: Sport, Education & Society
ISSN: 1357-3322
Issue: 7
Volume: 24
Pages: 727-741
Publication year:2019
Keywords:coach education, coaching, critical pedagogy, Paulo Freire, physical education, social change, Sport for development
CSS-citation score:4