Practice at the heart of learning approaches

Diálogo de Saberes

Diálogo de Saberes – roughly translates to ‘Wisdom Dialogues among different knowledges and ways of knowing’) – are a central feature to rural agroecological learning in La Via Campesina. Understanding how Diálogo de Saberes translates to urban spaces through Freire-inspired popular education methods (Freire 1970) could be key to unlocking new forms of solidarity and political mobilisation in an agroecological urbanism .

The development of learning approaches tailored to engage in diverse and layered ways of knowing (emotional, relational, memory, spiritual) is an essential element of urban agroecology’s pedagogies. One-to-one mentoring, training the trainers, holding political dialogues, and practical approaches are often named as more suitable to cater to the different life experiences of people that have rejected homogenising and homogenised approaches to learning. Co-learning, learning by doing and creative approaches, the affinity between conviviality, social gathering and learning, offer a range of opportunities to build meaningful context to make-sense together. There is, however, a perceived need to invest more explicitly and intentionally in political training as part of urban agroecological programmes, particularly in Europe, to build collective political contextualisation and the approaches needed for urban agroecology such as anti-racist practice.

In taking inspiration from MST (Movimiento Sem Terra) schools often based in rural settings, what would urban agroecology schools look and feel like that engage in practice as politics and support burgeoning movements to be based in solidaristic dialogue and transformative learning?

Paulo Freire (1970(1968)) Pedagogy of the Oppressed (Pedagogia do Oprimido), New York: Herder & Herder.

Building Block: Political Pedagogies