Connect Illiteracy to Violence
Anecdotal evidence from women in literacy programs reveals that violence frequently played a role in their inability to participate in or complete schooling, or to learn successfully. This suggests that statistics of childhood experiences of violence may be far higher for students in adult literacy programs than in the general population. Although many women who experienced severe violence in childhood may have too little belief in their ability to get themselves into a literacy program, it is not uncommon for all the students in a women’s literacy group to disclose stories of violent experiences (Horsman, 2000). In Canada, in spite of compulsory schooling, I interviewed women who had rarely attended school, having been pulled out of school by abusive fathers arguing that taking care of children and the household was the only education a girl needed. Many others who experienced violence in the home during childhood spoke of getting little from school because they were too "shy" to ask for help, too disturbed to be able to stay present and pay attention, too busy acting out and getting into trouble (Horsman, 1990).
Horsman, J. (2000). Too scared to learn: Women, violence and education. New Jersey: Lawrence Erlbaum.
(Excerpt from: Horsman, J. (2006). Moving Beyond "Stupid": Taking Account of the Impact of Violence on Women’s Learning The International Journal of Educational Development Gender Equality in Adult Education Gender Equity in Adult Education, Volume 26, Issue 2, Pages 135-242 (March)
New Understandings about Literacy
|Learning & Violence Home|
|BUILDING AN UNDERSTANDING: • The problem • Violence • Impact|
|EXPLORING POSSIBILITIES: • Learning processes • Helping yourself learn • Helping others learn • Learning to teach|
|CREATING CHANGE: • Changing education • Where in the world • Taking care of self|
|IMAGINING A FUTURE: • Dreams of a different world|