Austina Lee | Gareth Dylan Smith – The Role of Love and Community in American Schools

Austina Lee | Gareth Dylan Smith – The Role of Love and Community in American Schools

Capitalism and neoliberalism inform the way in which children in the USA are schooled. Mainstream education prioritises standardisation and conformity, and may not help students develop a sense of themselves, or tools to create good relationships with others. In a recent paper, teachers Austina Lee and Gareth Dylan Smith explore how this can be challenged through ‘punk’ pedagogy. They use the case study of a high-school choir to demonstrate how their ideas can be put into practice.

Dr Audrey L. Altstadt – Exploring the Tortuous History of Two Political Prisoners in Azerbaijan

Dr Audrey L. Altstadt – Exploring the Tortuous History of Two Political Prisoners in Azerbaijan

Human rights defenders Leyla and Arif Yunus played a crucial role in Azerbaijan’s politics and modern history. After being sentenced to 8.5 years in jail by the Azerbaijani government and being released due to health issues, Leyla and Arif Yunus shared the suffering and torture they endured as regime opponents and political prisoners in a book entitled The Price of Freedom. Dr Audrey L. Altstadt, a Professor of History at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, recently published a short article outlining the dynamics underlying the arrest of the two political activists and the struggle described in their book.

Professor John P Miller | The Importance of Compassion and Compromise in Healthy Societies

Professor John P Miller | The Importance of Compassion and Compromise in Healthy Societies

In a recent paper, Professor John P Miller discusses the importance of mutual accommodation and compassion in preserving democracies and ensuring we can tackle some of our biggest global problems. He highlights the way in which Canada has become a more tolerant, cooperative, inclusive society by emphasising the role of compromise and compassion. Using examples from education, he shows how we can nurture these qualities in children and young adults.

Dr Hong Lu | Exploring the Impact of the Death Penalty on a Convict’s Family

Dr Hong Lu | Exploring the Impact of the Death Penalty on a Convict’s Family

So far, very few research studies have investigated the effects of criminal convictions on the families of defendants. Dr Hong Lu, a Professor of Criminal Justice at University of Nevada, along with her co-authors, Dr Yudu Li and Dr Bin Liang, carried out a study examining how the family of Nian Bin, the defendant in a high-profile capital case in China who received four death sentences, managed the physical, emotional, financial, and legal challenges they faced after their relative’s conviction.

Dr Megan Schraedley | Reducing Political Sectarianism to Introduce Important Legislation

Dr Megan Schraedley | Reducing Political Sectarianism to Introduce Important Legislation

In the United States, public opinions have become increasingly polarised. This polarisation leads to ‘othering’, which describes how one group of people can view another group as very different from themselves and depict them in negative ways. Dr Megan Schraedley at West Chester University recently carried out a study exploring how othering arises in the context of US politics, and how it can be disrupted. Understanding how this destructive phenomenon can be disrupted could help policymakers to successfully introduce important legislation.

Dr Robert L. Walsh | Propaganda and Mass Deception Depend Upon the Tribal Mind

Dr Robert L. Walsh | Propaganda and Mass Deception Depend Upon the Tribal Mind

Propaganda is the systemic use of language with the intent to brainwash rather than to persuade. It has the subtle but pervasive power to ensnare an entire populace toward a predetermined attitude or outlook. Deceptive communication is now commonplace in this information age. Dr Robert L. Walsh recently examined how propagandists bend language for mass deception. He argued that what makes propaganda so insidious is a vestige of our prehistoric past – the Neolithic or Tribal mind.