Towards the Islamisation of critical pedagogy : a Malaysian case study.


The starting point for this thesis is the crisis in Muslim education in Malaysia and the response to the crisis suggested by the 'Islamisation of Knowledge' project. It seeks to contribute to this project by analysing its epistemological and methodological problems. On the basis of this analysis, the thesis seeks to ascertain whether an Islamised critical pedagogy can offer a more adequate resolution to the 'crisis'. In order to achieve this, the thesis is divided into two parts. The first part examines the history, causes and effects of the 'crisis' and highlights the effort of some Muslim scholars to resolve it through the Islamisation of Knowledge (10K) project. It then explores whether western critical pedagogy can contribute to the resolution of the 'crisis' by evaluating whether western critical pedagogy can be reconstructed from an Islamic perspective. In doing this, the thesis critically analyses the Islamic philosophy of education and redefines its core educational concepts. Then it provides an ideology-critique of the curriculum and pedagogy of the national education system generally, and Islamic education in Malaysia specifically. From these critiques, the thesis suggests a critical view of curriculum and pedagogy for Islamic education in Malaysia that could assist in achieving its aims. The second part of the thesis tries to assess whether this reconstructed critical pedagogy can be practised in the Malaysian classroom in order to achieve the ideals and values of Islamic education. In order to achieve this aim, the thesis conducts a case study to evaluate whether Habermas' 'Ideal Speech Situation' can be recreated in the Malaysian classroom and whether it can encourage students to become critical thinkers. It seeks to understand a murabbi's experience in practising Islamic critical pedagogy and his students' experiences of encountering his practice. It also explores the students' views and experiences of practising the murabbi's Islamic critical pedagogy in their own classrooms. The Case Study involves a murabbi (a lecturer who is teaching in a Teacher Education Programme in the International Islamic University, Malaysia) and four of his students who have experiences of teaching in Malaysian schools. The Case Study is based on a critical research methodology using the methods of critical discourse analysis and narrative inquiry. The analysis of the Case Study shows how the practice of an Islamic critical pedagogy can assist in resolving the crisis in the Muslim mind, and Islamic education through Islamic critique. The thesis reaches four main conclusions, which are: (i) it is possible to introduce and practice Islamic critical pedagogy in a Malaysian classroom; (ii) there is resistance, which a murabbi needs to consider when practising in a classroom that is based on an instrumental view of education, such as a Malaysian classroom; (iii) Islamic critique can be viewed as the method of ideology-critique conducted from an Islamic perspective, which could be the basis for the practice of ijtihad in Islamising knowledge; and (iv) the reconstructed critical pedagogy from an Islamic perspective should be viewed as' an . Islamisation of critical pedagogy due to two of its key concepts, namely 'emancipatory knowledge' and the method of 'ideology-critique' (Islamic critique) that are based on the concepts of Islamic education

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