Document Type


Publication Date

Winter 2011


The current definition of a good teacher is grounded in sets of pre-determined competencies established and imposed upon schools by bureaucratic organizations that are, proximally and for the most part, removed from the foundational elements of education, namely, the existential, embodied conscious experience of teaching and learning as it unfolds in the lived world of schools and universities. As Pinar (2004) observes, contemporary American education is deterministic, and "in its press for efficiency and standardization,' has the effect of reducing "teachers to automata" (p. 28). Thus, the subject-hood, or authentic identity, of both teachers and students is not of their own free construction, both run the risk of becoming mechanized and depersonalized because education has lost sight of, or obscured, what it means to be human in the first instance, which is an autonomous Being-in-the-world with others. Teachers are increasingly becoming alienated from the curriculum (educational content and pedagogy), their students, and themselves with dire consequences to the overall view to authentic subject-hood and real education.