Jan. Term 4: Popular Education and the Just City

We are excited to offer an open invitation to our 2015 Jan. Term….

Jan Term 2015 Full Course Description

University of Orange’s Jan Term sessions are condensed urbanism programs. Each of our Jan. Term programs includes a field trip, a seminar and workshop presented by a visiting urbanist, and an opportunity to volunteer.  We believe the combination of these three types of activities puts into action our ideas about an engaged and joyful urbanism.  Participating in these programs will earn you a University of Orange Urbanism Certificate and help you check off a couple graduation requirements for the year.


Jan Term 4: Popular Education and the Just City

At University of Orange, we believe that everyone has something to learn and each person has something to teach.  This idea comes from the theory and practice of Popular Education.  We are thrilled to offer a Jan. Term that will explore the history of Popular Education and help us discover ways we can practice Popular Education methods each day in creating our future city.


Urbanism Seminar and Workshop presented by Robert Sember 

January 10th and 20th join us in learning about the history of Popular Education and practicing neighborhood discovery.

Popular education is a process of emancipation and world making that emerges from and is practiced by liberation movements across the world.  Popular education puts into action Carl Marx’s assertion that while philosophers aim to understand the world, we aim to change it.  In popular education there are no teachers and no learners; we are all teacher-learners or learner-teachers who hold knowledge in community and are united in the struggle for freedom.  This seminar on popular education will have three parts: Part 1:  A history of popular education and its key actions; Part 2: An introduction to one of the most influential methods to popular education, Paulo Freire’s “thematic investigation”; and, Part 3: Outlining a popular education initiative to support the process of building just and beautiful cities.

Robert Sember is a member of the international sound-art collective, Ultra-red. For twenty years, Ultra-red has investigated how intentional listening practices facilitate political organizing.  The collective’s investigations focus on concerns related to (im)migrants’ rights, affordable housing, sexual and gender rights, and anti-racism and anti-poverty struggles. Robert brings to his work with Ultra-red training in cultural studies, medical anthropology, art, and ongoing involvement in the field of public health. He is the co-founder of the Arbert Santana Ballroom Archive and Oral History Project, an initiative by and for members of the African-American and Latino/a Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender community in New York City. Robert is the recipient of a fellowship with the Vera List Center for Art and Politics. He on the faculty of The New School’s Eugene Lang College and the University of Amsterdam’s Institute on Sexuality, Culture and Society.


UofO Field Trips to Washington DC and Queens Museum 

An important part of Popular Education is exploring the systems that shape our everyday lives. Often this requires exploring our own history. Help the world learn how racist planning policies from the 1930s still effect our neighborhoods today!

National Archives II in College Park, MD

Scan redlining maps and forms at the National Archives January 15th -16th.  Please emails us at universityoforange@gmail.com for travel and lodging information.

In 1937 the Homeowners Loan Corporation (HOLC), an agency of the US government, sent surveyors into the field to rate sections of 200 cities for their investment-worthiness.  This has become known as “redlining,” the process by which banks and other organizations deny funds to poor and marginalized neighborhoods.  The maps are carefully filed in the National Archive, but not yet easily accessible to the public.  And the survey forms are even less accessible, but they are of crucial importance for understanding how race and money were conceptualized at that decisive point in American history.  There is a growing movement to get this material on the net, and the UofO plans to help.  We will be going to the National Archives II in College Park, MD, to scan maps and documents that are not yet digitized.  Come help us make this crucial data available to all.

Here’s some background information:

Slate Magazine: where to find historical redlining maps

Here is one resource for maps but not forms

An example of redlining rating forms for Oakland, CA


Queens Museum, New York

On February 1st, University of Orange will be organizing a panel and presenting work at the Queens Museum.  The panel is titled, From Redlining to Gentrification.  It will feature discussion by Dr. Mindy Thompson Fullilove, Molly Kaufman, and Rod Wallace.  We will bring red-lining maps digitized from our trip to the national archives and discuss our findings.

This is a part of a larger program organized by 596 Acres, an organization doing great land-use work in New York.  596 Acres will run programming at the Queens museum based on their work around urban renewal plans.  Learn More…..


Teaching at the UofO 101 

Volunteer and become a University of Otange Teacher. On January 13th we will hold our first U of O teacher training, planned with our most experienced teachers Margaux Simmons and Jamy Lasell.

Do you have a skill or passion that you want to share with your community?  Join our workshop and we’ll help you transform your passion into a UofO course.  We welcome all ideas from cookie-baking to reading groups to walking tours.  Anything!  Past courses have included Urbanism Film Series, Beer Making and Intro to Guitar. This interactive workshop will be led by seasoned UofO faculty and will cover curriculum development and more.  Upon completion you will be ready to offer your course as part of our spring semester.  If you design a course for the UofO spring catalogue this will count as a volunteer credit towards Jan Term completion and UofO Workshop.

Other volunteer activities of your choice, during Jan. Term, will count towards the Urbanism Certificate.

4 thoughts on “Jan. Term 4: Popular Education and the Just City”

    1. Hi Beth, thank you for your interest in Jan Term! There is still space available. We’ll be emailing you with more information today.

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