Paulo Freire's Critique of Banking Education

Paulo Freire contrasts his preferred problem-solving education strategy with the banking education method in chapter 2, highlighting the drawbacks of the latter. Banking education is harshly criticized by Freire, who claims that it encourages necrophilia because it discourages the development of knowledge through critical thinking, which helps students become more aware of their surroundings. (Freire 77). The author's comparison of the banking system to oppression shows how passionately he feels about his position. He advocates for the implementation of a liberating educational system because he feels the need to free the masses from their shackles. The purpose of this text is to open the eyes of the educators and students to see the harm inflicted on them by the banking education method. It deprives them of the privilege to learn from each other and the growth that comes with it.

Question 2a

Paulo Freire argues that education has been reduced to an oppressive state where students are treated as objects and are obliged to take in and memorize what their teachers narrate without questioning. This form of education cuts out communication and prevents inquiry which is the backbone of real knowledge. Freire, therefore, advocates for the implementation of the problem-solving concept which helps to free them from the give and take ideology and exposes them to questioning. This approach not only brings an end to oppression but introduces the right perception of reality (p 86).

Question 2b

According to Freire, "Knowledge emerges only through invention and re-invention, through the restless, impatient, continuing, hopeful inquiry human beings pursue in the world, with the world, and with each other" (p 72). I agree with this view because I believe questioning confers to an individual a deeper understanding of issues and their application in real life. This causes someone to increase in knowledge and also gives them the ability to explain what they have learned to someone else. Questioning makes understanding and knowledge acquisition easier as compared to regurgitating what someone repeats to you.

I disagree with Freire's view that the banking concept should be done away with altogether because it doesn't help to further education (p 79). There are instances in the classroom where the banking method comes in handy. Doing away with it has the potential to complicate learning for students. For example, when being taught about the periodic table in chemistry, both the student and the teacher rely on the deposit-taking method to understand how the elements follow each other. The problem-solving approach may be used here to an extent, but the bulk of the information can only be acquired and retained through memorization. Freire overlooks the fact that the banking method can still find relevance in the classroom. He should advise teachers to use it only when it is necessary but not shun it entirely.

Question 3

Freire cites a source when he discusses how oppressors dominate the oppressed. He uses the quote to explain that the oppressors target the consciousness of the people and this disrupts them from seeing their situation (p 74). He does not use a signal phrase for this quote but blends it with his ideas. He does this well, and it serves to strengthen his argument through borrowing from someone else. The transition from his thought to the quote does not disrupt the flow of the text.

When explaining about the stifling nature of the banking concept, Freire uses another quote which suggests that this method causes suffering (p 78). He doesn't do a great job integrating this quote into the text; he simply drops it in the middle of two sentences. He should have used a signal phrase which introduces the quote to the audience and helps with the flow of the text. The signal phrase also helps the reader to make sense of the quote and understand how it fits in with the author's ideas.

Works Cited

Freire, Paulo. Pedagogy of the Oppressed. Revised ed. Translated by Myra Bergman Ramos, Continuum: New York, 1993.

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