Thursday, September 21, 2006

Freire's view of differential diagnosis

During the feedback session after presenting my paper at the ICT4D symposium someone made the comment that a Freirian approach to "differential diagnosis" would be a very community based activity. I though about this and have done some reading and I would have to agree. I'll provide two quotes and then provide my rationale.
Sachs (2005) states, A Differentail Diagnosis, which identifies the policies and investments that the country needs to achieve the Millennium Development Goals.
Freire (1972) states, it is absolutely essential that the oppressed participate in the revolutionary process with an increasingly critical awareness of their role as Subjects of the transformation.
I believe that what Sachs is espousing is a national diagnosis for what "ills" a country. And what Freire is espousing is individual and / or community involvement in the process of finding a remedy for the "ills". Sachs approach is too macro, communities within any given country differ to greatly to have a country level differential diagnosis. A Freirian approach would be a community diagnosis.

Sachs, J. (2005). The End of Poverty: Economic Possibilities for Our Time. (The Penguin Press)
Freire, P. (1972). Pedagogy of the oppressed. Harmondsworth : Penguin.