Creating Space for Democracy: A Primer on Dialogue and Deliberation in Higher Education
We live in divisive and polarizing times, often remaining in comfortable social bubbles and experiencing few genuine interactions with people who are different or with whom we disagree. For our democracy to thrive at a time when we face wicked problems that involve tough trade-offs, it is vital that all citizens participate fully in the process. We need to learn to listen, think, and act with others to solve public problems. This collaborative task begins with creating space for democracy. This book provides a guide for doing so on campus through deliberation and dialogue.
At the most basic level, this book describes collaborative and relational work to engage with others and co-create meaning. Specifically, dialogue and deliberation are processes in which a diverse group of people moves toward making a collective decision on a difficult public issue.
This primer offers a blueprint for achieving the civic mission of higher education by incorporating dialogue and deliberation into learning at colleges and universities.
This book, intended for all educators who are concerned about democracy, imparts the power and impact of public talk, offers the insights and experiences of leading practitioners, and provides the grounding to adopt or adapt the models in their own settings to create educative spaces and experiences that are humanizing, authentic, and productive. It is an important resource for campus leaders, student affairs practitioners, librarians, and centers of institutional diversity, community engagement, teaching excellence and service-learning, as well as faculty, particularly those in the fields of communication studies, education, and political science.
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