Flawed Visions of Democracy in the United States: Influences on Current Critical Social Justice Research

sj Miller


The visionary, John Dewey, once said that a success to a deliberative democracy is dependent on how a community communicates and then collectively enacts change. His early critiques of Democracy are foundational to current critical research about social justice because the principles that govern our current democracy have been flagrantly marginalized from our communal sense of democratic agency. Social justice research has been highly politicized by policy-makers, which has led research to be more innovative in its challenges of hegemonic principles that have mandated and inculcated compulsory, inequitable, and insensitive schooling practices. This conceptual piece highlights the importance of foregrounding critical social justice research in education as it revisits a historical critique of flawed visions of democracy, its origins in the U.S. Constitution as location for understanding how social justice has been (mis)appropriated and affixed to myriad contexts, and positions the salience of centering critical social justice research in education.

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