Grief Work Being with and Moving Through A Resistance to Change in Teacher Education

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Stephanie Cariaga


The ongoing pandemic and an outpouring call for racial, economic, gender, disability and climate justice have incited a rupture in our “normal” ways of being, knowing, and relating. As teacher educators, we have yet to fully “acknowledge the rupture” (Roy, 2020), grieve what we may have lost, and reckon with our underlying responsibilities to ourselves, our students, and to each other. Integrating personal narrative and pedagogical reflections, in addition to building upon apocalyptic, abolitionist, and embodied frameworks, I explore our collective and complicit hesitance to change in teacher education. I turn to therapist and somatics scholar Resmaa Menakem’s (2017) distinction between dirty pain and clean pain to explore these questions and unravel the necessary embodied skills to move from the dehumanizing habits of schooling to a humanizing praxis of education. I offer that transformative education requires building our willingness and capacity to grieve.

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Perspective 3: Faculty & Staff Voices