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Teaching with TendernessToward an Embodied Practice$
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Becky Thompson

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780252041167

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.5622/illinois/9780252041167.001.0001

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Thatched Roof, No Walls

Thatched Roof, No Walls

(p.17) 1 Thatched Roof, No Walls
Teaching with Tenderness

Becky Thompson

University of Illinois Press

What are the consequences when teachers carry our minds to one place (to work, the classroom, our desks), our bodies to another (to the gym, yoga studio, our couch), our spirits to another (to church, synagogue, mosque, mountains), our psychic healing to another (to the couch, the bed, vacations), and our activism to another (to prisons, borders, the streets)? Students sense and feel these splits. They are trying to learn amid these splits. A pedagogy of tenderness—embodied techniques of teaching that allow us to hold in our minds more complexity, paradox, and community than previously thought possible—requires new bridge work where contemplative practitioners, activists, trauma specialists, and feminist teachers listen to each other. Such bridge building is essential as we create ways of teaching that move us beyond individualism, consumerism, and militarism.

Keywords:   Multiracial alliance building, Indigenous studies, decolonizing yoga, intersectionality, liberatory education, embodiment, spiritual bypass

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