Older learners partaking in intergenerational learning: Freirean-inspired remarks
Keywords:intergenerational learning, critical educational gerontology, Paolo Freire
Intergenerational learning (IL) is a popular yet slippery educational concept. IL comprises generations learning from each other, learning together, or learning about each other. IL has recently gained much terrain in policy, research, and practice, to the point where it serves the notorious Ten Principles of an Age-Friendly University and other ageing-related policy frameworks. Reckoning that the theorisation about IL is vital but unfinished work, this paper critically examines a few central educational questions around its theory and practice. Then, inspired by feedback from the field, critical educational gerontology, critical geragogy, and Freire’s Pedagogy of the Oppressed, I raise concerns over the role of generational actors (learners and teachers) in IL, its goal, as well as the intended object of study. After theoretically unpacking IL, I conclude by drawing demarcation lines beyond which IL risks stultifying older learners in lieu of emancipating involved generational actors.
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