The Australian Radical Education Group (RED G) was created in June 1976, which in turn launched a magazine for radical(ising) teachers, the Radical Education Dossier (RED), that would be published for the next 30 years. The purpose of this paper is to characterise the emergence and first phase of RED’s publication up to its name change in 1984.
The authors draw on interviews with key members of the magazine’s editorial collective, and a review of RED’s contents, to identify the major political ambitions as manifest in RED in historical context. The authors contextualise this radical education project in the post-1968 world context of social and political upheaval, rejecting the Cold War options of either Soviet style Communist or US-based capitalist pathways.
In this context RED generated powerful critiques of dominant educational policy in multiple areas. The critique was part of a project to promote a socialist understanding of mass education, and to promote the transformation of Australian society towards socialism. The authors argue that the debates and struggles within RED in this period, seeking to define and advance a socialist educational project, reflected a broad and consistent critique of progressive educational reforms, rooted in its radical political foundations.
This paper provides an historical review of a 30-year radical education publishing initiative in Australia, about which no accounts have been published. It connects directly with contemporary educational issues, and offers insights for interviews with those directly involved in the historical project.
The authors would like to acknowledge the time and generosity of RED editorial collective members who were interviewed for this project, and their ongoing interest in and passion for the issues debated by RED and RED G.
Griffiths, T. and Downey, J. (2015), "“What to do about schools?”: The Australian Radical Education Group (RED G)", History of Education Review, Vol. 44 No. 2, pp. 170-185. https://doi.org/10.1108/HER-12-2013-0025Download as .RIS
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