Teaching against the Grain: Texts for a Pedagogy of Possibility

By Roger I. Simon | Go to book overview

1
On Disruptive Daydreams

The future will of course have to be struggled for. It cannot be willed into place. But nonetheless we still have to dream and to know in what direction to desire.

Dick Hebdige, "Some Sons and Their Fathers!"1

The desire to bring about a freer, less alienating society has inspired many actions, but the ability to imagine such a society to begin with, and then to see how it can emerge out of the present, must be there first. It is this that gives meaning to the slogan scribbled on Paris walls by the revolutionaries in May 1968 -- Prenez vos rêves pour la realité. -- Take your dreams for reality.

Susan Crean and Marcel Rioux, Two Nations2

Wishes do nothing. In wishing there is not yet the dimension of activity. The wishful dream with no possibility for action is self-consuming. It is an impoverished dream, merely a diversion that provides a "temporary release from routine and character [but] never threatens to unravel them because it never occupies their home ground of everyday vision, community, and work." 3

But hope, hope is something else. 4 Hope is the acknowledgment of more openness in a situation than the situation easily reveals; openness above all to possibilities for human attachments, expressions, and assertions. The hopeful person does not merely envisage this possibility as a wish; the hopeful person acts upon it now by loosening and refusing the hold that taken-for-granted realities and routines have over imagination.

-3-

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