Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Doctoral students "solidarize" with the garden

Today, a class of doctoral students from EDST's EdD (EDST 593A.971 Ethics in Educational Leadership) program joined me in the garden with their course instructors Jeannie Kerr and Vanessa Andreotti.

Uprooted cherry tree & oak cuttings, old Orchard Garden
We walked down from the Scarfe building, along the 'sacred lawn' on Main Mall, and paused for a moment at the old garden. Jeannie described the old garden as a graveyard, and it really does feel sad and abandoned, particularly now that construction for Vantage College has begun and the giant oak tree that flanked the garden has been cut and piled onto the space. We talked about mourning, in the context of this particular garden but also more generally in terms of the extinctions (of plants, animals, languages...) that accompany globalization and the Anthropocene.

Washing station
The new garden, in contrast, was vivid and vital and filled with surprises and abundance. Harvesting giant chard, kohlrabi, cucumbers, zucchini, kale, carrots, and beets reminded us of the great gifts of life that nurturing the land, being nurtured by the land can offer. What are our individual and collective ways of thanking the land for these gifts?

Harvesting turned to food preparation (and weeding - thank you!) as we prepared a rainbow salad and vegetables to take home. Gathered together around the food, we discussed the course readings around accountability (Ranson, 2003) and decolonization and the pedagogies of solidarity (Gaztambide-Fernandez, 2012).





Thank you to Jeannie, Vanessa, and the wonderful students for visiting the garden and your generous donation. Please come again!





Readings
Gaztambide-Fern├índez, R. A. (2012). Decolonization and the pedagogy of solidarity. Decolonization: Indigeneity, Education & Society, 1(1), 41-67. 

Ranson, S. (2003). Public accountability in the age of neo-liberal governance. Journal of Education Policy, 18(5), 459-480. 

2 comments:

  1. What an amazing experience at the garden today!!! I am overwhelmed by the kindness, thoughtfulness and generousity of Julia, the student interns and volunteer, as well as the garden. The garden was a great teacher today. There is a story and experience of the garden as told by Julia that helped us think through global capitalism as it manifests in our educational institutions, as well as ways to consider acts of solidarity in these places as an ethical response. Thank you for engaging with us so thoroughly and thoughtfully, and investing your time and energies in this way! What a gift! I am hoping that the bees are coming back into balance after their displacement, and glad that they have such an abundance to help with the transition. With gratitude, Jeannie

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  2. Thank you for engaging with us so thoroughly and thoughtfully, and investing your time and energies in this way velg power ! What a gift! I am hoping that the bees are coming back into balance after their displacement, and glad that they have such an abundance to help with the transition

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