This glossary is meant to assist the reader in comprehending terms related to the topic of intersectional feminist pedagogies.

Banking Model. Paulo Freire develops his concept of the ‘banking model of education’ in his seminal book Pedagogy of the Oppressed of 1968. With the concept, Freire describes the notion that the student is an ‘empty account’, a vessel that is merely to be filled with knowledge by the teacher. In the banking ‘approach’, education is conceived of merely as a direct transfer of knowledge. More precisely, as Freire points out, ‘[t]he students are not called upon to know, but to memorize the contents narrated by the teacher.’ The banking model ‘transforms students into receiving objects’ and thereby ‘attempts to control thinking and action, leads men and women to adjust to the world, and inhibits their creative power’. In Freire’s theory of pedagogy, and especially what he calls ‘the problem-posing concept of education’, the learner is considered as co-producer of knowledge. However, as Freire argues, the ‘banking’ model is not only reductive in respect to the student but also to the teacher, which is also effectively ‘dehumanised’. As an alternative to this, Freire develops a particular kind of humanism that considers one’s humanity as fundamentally incomplete: education is based on an awareness of this incompleteness, and the strive to be ‘more fully human’.

Art Education: A Glossary © 2013 Studio for Immediate Spaces 

(Design)Canon. Etymologically, the term “canon” can be tracked back to the classical Latin for a “measuring rule,” and to the Greek for “any straight rod or bar; standard of excellence.”  The notion of a design canon became fused with the concept of “good design” and its partner, “good criticism,” propounded by establishment institutions such as the Museum of Modern Art in New York and the Council of Industrial Design in the UK in the mid-twentieth century.  A canon of good design indicated an implicit consensus about what the measurements on this rule were, and the presence of a supporting infrastructure that included a belief in professional expertise and the desire and means for a shared central conversation.

Clearly, in those terms, the design canon would seem to be an anachronistic impossibility in today’s world of cultural relativism, the democratization of media, amateur enthusiasms and niche interests. On You Tube alone, there are 38 million videos devoted to the topic of design. It’s unlikely that the notion of an authoritative list of exemplars of design, with the critic and curator as gatekeepers to this list, still holds. Design history came of age as a discipline in the late 1970s right when establishment values such a design canon, which had tended to privilege a Western, male version of design excellence, were being questioned and reframed through the lenses of gender, post-colonialism, popular culture, and environmental impact. And yet, as the title of this conference of design historians attests, we still refer to it.


Consciousness-raising. Consciousness raising was an essential organising tool for second wave radical feminists. The idea was that, rather than learn about women’s oppression through studying preexisting literature, one would start with one’s own experiences. In groups, women listened to each other’s feelings and experiences and, through that, came to understand the specific and systemic conditions that underlined and pulled together all these supposedly personal experiences. From these supportive discussions came the process of theorisation (many influential pamphlets and books were written in this period) and action.

Training for Exploitation? Politicising Employability and Reclaiming Education - by Precarious Workers Brigade (2017)

“To be able to understand what feminist consciousness-raising is all about, it is important to remember that it began as a program among women who all considered themselves radicals. Before we go any further, let’s examine the word “ radical.” It is a word that is often used to suggest extremist, but actually it doesn’t mean that. The dictionary says radical means root, coming from the Latin word for root. And that is what we meant by calling ourselves radicals. We were interested in getting to the roots of problems in society. You might say we wanted to pull up weeds in the garden by their roots, not just pick o ff the leaves at the top to make things look good momentarily. Women’s Liberation was started by women who considered themselves radicals in this sense. Our aim in forming a women’s liberation group was to start a mass movement of women to put an end to the barriers of segregation and discrimination based on sex.”

Consciousness-Raising: A Radical Weapon by Kathie Sarachild

Colonialism is a practice of domination, which involves the subjugation of one people to another. One of the difficulties in defining colonialism is that it is hard to distinguish it from imperialism. Frequently the two concepts are treated as synonyms. Like colonialism, imperialism also involves political and economic control over a dependent territory. The etymology of the two terms, however, provides some clues about how they differ. The term colony comes from the Latin word colonus, meaning farmer. This root reminds us that the practice of colonialism usually involved the transfer of population to a new territory, where the arrivals lived as permanent settlers while maintaining political allegiance to their country of origin. Imperialism, on the other hand, comes from the Latin term imperium, meaning to command. Thus, the term imperialism draws attention to the way that one country exercises power over another, whether through settlement, sovereignty, or indirect mechanisms of control.

Decolonialization. The American historian David Gardinier in his 1967 article defining ‘decolonization’ stated that it was initially a political phenomenon soon extended in meaning to include all elements incurred in the colonial experience, ‘whether political, economic,cultural or psychological’.1 Delavignette (1977:131) went further, arguing that decolonization fundamentally meant the ‘rejection of the civilization of the white man’

‘Decolonization A brief history of the word’ RAYMOND F. BETTS at ‘Beyond Empire and Nation - The Decolonization of African and Asian societies, 1930s-1970s’ (2012)

Decoloniality. Peruvian sociologist Anibal Quijano claims that decoloniality requires epistemic reconstitution as the following:

a) Modernity/coloniality are the two pillars of Western Civilizations. The two pillars are supported by a complex and diverse structure of knowledge, basically, Christian Theology and Secular Sciences and Philosophy. That edifice is at its turn supported by specific institutions created in tandem with the structure of knowledge: knowledge requires actors and institutions, and actors and institutions conserve, expand, change the structure of knowledge but within the same matrix: the colonial matrix of power.

b) Decoloniality means first to delink (to detach) from that overall structure of knowledge in order to engage in an epistemic reconstitution. Reconstitution of what? Of ways of thinking, languages, ways of life and being in the world that the rhetoric of modernity disavowed and the logic of coloniality implement. The failure of decolonization during the Cold War was due, mainly, to the fact that the decolonization did not question the terms of the conversation, that is, did not question the structures of knowledge and subject formation (desires, beliefs, expectations) that were implanted in the colonies by the former colonizers.

Emancipate 1620s, "set free from control," from Latin emancipatus, past participle of emancipare "put (a son) out of paternal authority, declare (someone) free, give up one's authority over," in Roman law, the freeing of a son or wife from the legal authority (patria potestas) of the pater familias, to make his or her own way in the world; from assimilated form of ex- "out, away" (see ex-) + mancipare "deliver, transfer or sell," from mancipum "ownership," from manus "hand" (from PIE root *man- (2) "hand") + capere "to take," from PIE root *kap- "to grasp." Related: Emancipated; emancipating.

Not used by the Romans in reference to the freeing of slaves, the verb for this being manumittere. The English word was adopted in the jargon of the cause of religious toleration (17c.), then anti-slavery (1776). Also used in reference to women who free themselves from conventional customs (1850).

Emancipatory giving people social or political freedom and rights:

- To the women of France, the war had brought an emancipatory revolution.

- Poetry, fiction and drama can be more emancipatory than revolutionary politics.

Eurocentrism is, as used here, the name of a perspective of knowledge whose systematic formation began in Western Europe before the middle of the seventeenth century, although some of its roots are, without doubt, much older. In the following centuries this perspective was made globally hegemonic, traveling the same course as the dominion of the European bourgeois class. Its constitution was associated with the specific bourgeois secularization of European thought and with the experiences and necessities of the global model of capitalist (colonial/modern) and Eurocentered power established since the colonization of America.

However, the Europeans persuaded themselves, from the middle of the seventeenth century, but above all during the eighteenth century, that in some way they had autoproduced themselves as a civilization, at the margin of history initiated with America, culminating an independent line that began with Greece as the only original source. Furthermore, they concluded that they were naturally (i.e.,racially) superior to the rest of the world, since they had conquered everyone and had imposed their dominance on them.

The confrontation between the historical experience and the Eurocentric perspective on knowledge makes it possible to underline some of the more important elements of Eurocentrism: (a) a peculiar articulation between dualism (capital-precapital, Europe–non-Europe, primitive-civilized, traditional-modern, etc.) and a linear, one-directional evolutionism from some state of nature to modern European society; (b) the naturalization of the cultural differences between human groups by means of their codification with the idea of race; and (c) the distorted-temporal relocation of all those differences by relocating non-Europeans in the past. All these intellectual operations are clearly interdependent, and they could not have been cultivated and developed without the coloniality of power.

Coloniality of Power, Eurocentrism, and Latin America - Anibal Quijano 

Feminist pedagogy . Like Freire’s liberatory pedagogy, feminist pedagogy is based on assumptions about power and consciousness-raising, acknowledges the existence of oppression as well as the possibility of ending it, and foregrounds the desire for and primary goal of social transformation. However, feminist theorizing offers important complexities such as questioning the notion of a coherent social subject or essential identity, articulating the multifaceted and shifting nature of identities and oppressions, viewing the history and value of feminism consciousness-raising as distinct from Freirean methods, and focusing as much on the interrogation of the teacher’s consciousness and social location as on the student’s.

Feminist Pedagogy: Looking Back to Move Forward(2009), Robbin D. Crabtree, David Alan Sapp, & Adela C. Licona

Global North/South.Terms that denote the generic geographic, historical, economic, educational, and political division between North and South. North America, Europe, and developed parts of East Asia disproportionately control global resources. Disparities of wealth, housing, education, digital media access and numerous other factors underscore the power and privilege enjoyed by the Global North, while the Global South, home to the majority of natural resources and population, is excluded.

Economic Impact of Digital Media: Growing Nuance, Critique, and Direction for Education Research, George L. Boggs.

The Global South as a critical concept has three primary definitions. First, it has traditionally been used within intergovernmental development organizations—primarily those that originated in the Non-Aligned Movement—to refer to economically disadvantaged nation-states and as a post–Cold War alternative to “Third World.” However, within a variety of fields, and often within literary and cultural studies, the Global South has been employed in a postnational sense to address spaces and peoples negatively impacted by contemporary capitalist globalization. In this second definition, the Global South captures a deterritorialized geography of capitalism’s externalities and means to account for subjugated peoples within the borders of wealthier countries, such that there are Souths in the geographic North and Norths in the geographic South. While this usage relies on a longer tradition of analysis of the North’s geographic Souths—wherein the South represents an internal periphery and subaltern relational position—the epithet “global” is used to unhinge the South from a one-to-one relation to geography. It is through this deterritorial conceptualization that a third meaning is attributed to the Global South, in which it refers to the resistant imaginary of a transnational political subject that results from a shared experience of subjugation under contemporary global capitalism. This subject is forged when the world’s Souths mutually recognize one another and view their conditions as shared. The use of the Global South to refer to a transnational political subjectivity under contemporary capitalist globalization draws from the rhetoric of the so-called Third World Project, or the non-aligned and radical internationalist discourses of the Cold War. In this sense, the Global South may productively be considered a direct response to the category of postcoloniality in that it captures both a political subjectivity and ideological formulation that arises from lateral solidarities among the world’s multiple “Souths” and that moves beyond the analysis of colonial difference within postcolonial theory. Critical scholarship that falls under the rubric Global South is invested in the analysis of the formation of a Global South subjectivity, the study of power and racialization within global capitalism in ways that transcend the nation-state as the unit of comparative analysis, and in tracing contemporary South-South relations—or relations among subaltern groups across national, linguistic, racial, and ethnic lines—as well as the histories of those relations in prior forms of South-South exchange.

Global South, Anne Garland Mahler (2017) 

Intersectionality is a framework designed to explore the dynamic between co-existing identities (e.g. woman, Black) and connected systems of oppression (e.g. patriarchy, white supremacy). The term was created by Kimberlé Crenshaw and challenges an assumption continuing to undermine the feminist movement – that women are a homogeneous group, equally positioned by structures of power. In a feminist context, it allows for a fully developed understanding of how factors such as race and class shape women’s lived experiences, how they interact with gender.

Intersectionality is actually a pretty straightforward idea: if forms of prejudice have the same root, growing from the dominant power structure of “white supremacist capitalist patriarchy” (hooks), then challenging one aspect of structural power alone is almost entirely ineffectual. Opposing one facet of systematic oppression also requires a degree of selectivism, treating one form of structural power as a bigger threat than the others, e.g. when white middle-class feminists argue that gender is the primary means of oppression in all women’s lives, disregarding the realities of working class women and/or women of colour. For an effective feminist movement that tackles the very root of persisting inequalities, in the words of Audre Lorde, “there can be no hierarchies of oppression.”

The lens of intersectionality allows for the overlap between identities of race, sex, class, sexuality, etc. to be fully incorporated in structural analysis, thus providing feminist analysis with the perspective to encompass the true range of all women’s lives, the scope to understand all women’s experiences. Intersectional praxis prevents marginalised women from being further side-lined within the feminist movement.

On .

Neoliberalism (neo-liberalism) refers primarily to the 20th century resurgence of 19th century ideas associated with laissez-faire economic liberalism. These include extensive economic liberalization policies such as privatization, fiscal austerity, deregulation, free trade, and reductions in government spending in order to enhance the role of the private sector in the economy.The implementation of neoliberal policies and the acceptance of neoliberal economic theories in the 1970s are seen by some academics as the root of financialization, with the financial crisis of 2007–08 as one of the ultimate results.


Patriarchy as a concept has been defined by various feminist theorists. An early definition is found in Millet, ‘Sexual Politics’: "Our society ... is a patriarchy. The fact is evident at once if one recalls that the military, industry, technology, universities, science, political offices, finances - in short, every avenue of power within society, including the coercive force of the police, is in entirely male hands." The central problem with this definition of patriarchy is that it is a universal and trans-historical form of oppression that is being described. It presents specific problems for a Marxist feminist approach located in historical analysis. Sheila Rowbotham has argued in her essay "The Trouble with Patriarchy," that this "implies a universal form of oppression which returns us to biology." A useful definition of patriarchy that attempts to overcome this problem of universal oppression is outlined by Griselda Pollock: "patriarchy does not refer to the static, oppressive domination of one sex over another, but a web of psycho-social relationships which institute a socially significant difference on the axis of sex, which is so deeply located in our very sense of lived, sexual identity that it appears to us as natural and unalterable.

Cheryl Buckley, Made in Patriarchy. Design Issues: Vol. III, No. 2 (1986), p. 5

Power structure 1: a group of persons having control of an organization : ESTABLISHMENT.  2: the hierarchical interrelationships existing within a controlling group

A power structure is an overall system of influence between any individual and every other individual within any selected group of people. A description of a power structure would capture the way in which power or authority is distributed between people within groups such as a government, nation, institution, organization, or a society.

G. William Domhoff, Thomas R. Dye, Power Elites and Organizations (1987), p. 9.

Western. Today, most modern utilizations of the term refer to the societies in the West and their close genealogical, lingual, and philosophical posterities, typically included are those states whose cultural individuality and dominant civilization are derived from European civilization. However, though sharing in similar historical background, it would be wrong to see the Western universe as a massive axis, as many cultural, lingual, spiritual, political, and economical differences exist between Western states and populations. Western civilization is normally said to include Northern America ( U. S. A. and Canada ), Europe ( at least the European Union. EFTA states. European microstates ), Australia and New Zealand. Some states in Latin America are considered Western states, mostly because most of its peoples are racially descended from Europeans ( Spanish and Lusitanian colonists and ulterior in-migration from other European states ). And therefore their society operates in a extremely Westernized manner. Indeed, most states in Latin America use their official linguistic communication, either in Spanish or Lusitanian, Harmonizing to the CIA -The World Factbook- , there has besides been considerable in-migration to Latin America from European states other than Spain and Portugal.