João Caramelo

Education and Community Development in a Self-Managed Transition Process


Educação e Desenvolvimento Comunitário num Processo de Transição Autogestionário


Ph.D in Education Sciences
Faculty of Psychology and Education Sciences, University of Porto, Portugal


José Alberto Correia


March 12, 2010


Curriculum Vitae


This work mainly intends to be a theoretical reflection and questioning, empirically illustrated through a case of study (the transition process to an employee ownership situation of a sugar cane factory in the Brazil northeast), of some of the issues about education and local and community development relations at the present historical moment. This works intentionally assumes the relevance and inevitability of the educative phenomena in the socio-community development processes, either when it assumes the form of diverse intentional social practices intending to produce transformational effects in the social subjects, their interactions and their relation with the territory where they co-exist and work, either when it appears as unintentional effects induced, individually and collectively, in the social subjects through their involvement in the social processes and practices carried way with the intention of promoting social change and community development. In this sense, our discussion is centered, on one side, in the characteristics, functions and qualities that educational processes may acquire, understood through the lens of the diverse meanings that social subjects, involved in a collective mobilization process, attribute to those processes and, on the other side, aims to characterize the individual and collective educational effects that the mobilization and participation in a socio-communitarian change process provokes in social subjects. This work is also an opportunity to reflect the methodological issues raised by qualitative research in the field of the education-community development relations, namely in what concerns the practices of empirical data production and the theoretical and epistemological choices that underlie the analysis and interpretation of those data and that supposes an inexorable affirmation of a dialectic approach in order to produce a knowledge simultaneously sensitive to the senses and significations attributed by social subjects to their action and to the material and structural conditions within which the action and discourse is sewed. A possible contribution of this work to the sciences of education field knowledge lays in the arguing for the necessity of developing hybrid categories to analyze educational phenomena present in the socio-communitarian development processes, as well as the necessity of rescuing the theoretical grammar produced in the field of local development critical approaches hence that grammar may be able to  apprehend the tensions and contradictions that in the present context of neoliberal globalization cross the political and educative definition of social change dynamics.