A wiki article a teammate and I coauthored and added to the University of Texas wikis. Wiki articles are quite short but MUST be succinct and well-researched.
Biography and Pedagogy of the Oppressed
Paulo Freire was born in Recife, Brazil on September 19th, 1921. His family fell into economic hardships during The Great Depression, causing Freire to grow up in extreme poverty (Gadotti, 1994, p. 3). He began to recognize the effects of class on education at an early age when his hunger and social status negatively effected his academic development (p. 5). He later became interested in education and began working with SESI (Social Service of Industry) in 1946 where he observed the classist flaws in an education system focused more on abstraction and idealization than talking to working class people (p. 7). As the director of the Cultural Extension Service he began studies on teaching adult literacy (p. 8) but was forced to stop after the 1964 coup d'état in Brazil (p. 15).
Freire's Pedagogy of the Oppressed was translated to English in 1970 and builds off of Freire’s years of experience in education. Freire attacked the “banking concept of education,” where knowledge is transferred from the authority figure (the teacher) to the student (p. 72). He instead argues students and teachers should act together as critical investigators of their conditions (p. 81). Freire wanted education to make the working class realize how conditions like systemic poverty affect their ability to prosper (a realization similar to the one Freire made) so that workers could organize to improve their conditions.
Critical Pedagogy
"Critical pedagogy" is the belief that social systems and institutions play an active role in pedagogy, or the process of teaching; it asks both educators and students to think critically about how educational institutions enforce systems of oppression, and how to alleviate their impact on education (Porfilio & Ford, 2015, xvi, p.4) Freire coined the term in 1968 when he first wrote Pedagogy of the Oppressed, but is not the first person to consider critical theory in education. American pragmatist John Dewey, for example, argued in his 1897 article “My Pedagogic Creed” that a student’s education comes only at the hands of their own power “by the demands of the social situations in which he finds himself” (1897, Article I, p. 2)
Paulo Freire's critical pedagogy is the culmination of both his challenging educational experiences in Brazil and his personal experience of growing up in poverty. His views are useful in understanding the necessity of "information as process" (Buckland, 1991, 351) in education. Rather than follow a conventional oppressive model in which information is transferred to students as if they are inanimate receptacles, Freire asks for students to take part in education and information pedagogy. 
Freire’s critical pedagogy continues to be analyzed and valued by scholars, educators, and philosophers alike, but there have been critiques regarding the semantics of his work. For example, Freire seems to imply that his standpoint is the definitive one and that others with differing mindsets need to be “corrected,” a very Western colonial ideal (Roberts, 1994, 316, p. 4) that does not correlate with his struggle towards equality in academic discussion. Freire's critical pedagogy is also rooted in Marxist philosophy, but fails to fully embrace Marx's ideals. Karl Marx envisioned that the struggle between bourgeoisie and proletariat would be resolved through a revolution against the bourgeoise, but Freire implies that resolving the struggle of education lies solely within members of the “educational bourgeoisie” willingly giving up their status to work with the proletariat (Roberts, 1994, p. 5).
Feminist scholars have also critiqued Freire’s patriarchal language and reductionist ideas, especially in his early work. Kim Diaz points out that he used only male pronouns and examples in his earlier books, which implies that the male experience is universal (n.d., sec. 10). Education professor Nelly Stromquist writes that Freire recognized the disadvantages arising from race and gender, but in his early work he treated those specific struggles as part of a single struggle for class-consciousness (2014, p. 547). His later work did acknowledge sexism in education but did not expand beyond that acknowledgement (2014, p. 547). Despite these problematic elements many progressive thinkers still find his work valuable. Feminist writer and scholar bell hooks believes Freire's work is still liberatory despite its sexist language (1994, p. 49). Stromquist also acknowledges the value of his work but advocates for placing it in a historical context that acknowledges his contributions while also recognizing that empowerment goes beyond consciousness raising (2014, p. 556).

Buckland, M. (1991). Information as thing. Journal of the American Society for Information Science, 42(5), 351–360. https://doi.org/10.1002/(SICI)1097-4571(199106)42:53.0.CO;2-3
Dewey, John. (1897) My pedagogic creed. The School Journal. LIV. 3 (January 16, 1897), 77-80.
Díaz, Kim. (n.d.) Paulo Freire: 1921 - 1997. Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy. https://iep.utm.edu/freire/
Freire, Paulo. (1970). Pedagogy of the oppressed: 30th anniversary edition (M. Bergman Ramos, Trans.). Continuum. (Original work published 1968).
Gadotti, Moacir. (1994). Reading Paulo Freire: His Life and Work (John Milton, Trans.). State University of New York Press.
hooks, bell. (1994). Paulo Freire. In Teaching to Transgress: Education as the practice of freedom. (pp. 45-58) Routledge.
Porfilio, B., & Ford, D. (2015). Leaders in Critical Pedagogy : a Narratives for Understanding and Solidarity / Edited by Brad Porfilio; Derek R. Ford. Brill . https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-6300-166-3
Roberts, P.. (1994) Education, dialogue and intervention: Revisiting the Freirean project. Educational Studies, 20(3), 307–327. https://doi.org/10.1080/0305569940200301
Stromquist, N. P. (2014). Freire, literacy and emancipatory gender learning. International Review of Education, 60(4), 545–558. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11159-014-9424-2
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