Journal of Educational Leadership in Action


Educators have found the theories of Paulo Freire attractive for a variety of reasons. As more scholars in critical pedagogy highlight the interdisciplinary appeal and applicability of Freirean thought, they have attracted the attention of faculty in a wide range of disciplines and interdisciplines, including leadership studies. However, the integration of Freirean concepts with those in leadership theory can be productive and problematic for teacher-leaders. Integration has led to the emergence of transformative practices. It also resulted in the proliferation of conceptual innovations and proposals that, upon closer inspection, reveal how ideas and concepts often compete when they are (mis)appropriated. This article will examine what happens when the Four Frames Approach, developed by Lee G. Bolman and Terry E. Deal, is used as a leadership model for Freire’s conceptualization of critical consciousness or conscientization. However, the role of dialogue has been excluded in the model rather than recognized as a key method for managing and democratizing academic organizations. This study will evaluate the role that dialogue plays in conscientization and its increasing importance in leadership theory. Also, it will reveal how dialogic metaphors can serve as conceptual tools that faculty can use to become more successful and conscientious teachers and leaders in higher education.


Jeremy Dennis is the Chair of the Liberal Arts at St. Louis Community College. His research interests are in interdisciplinary theory, pedagogy, and leadership in higher education.

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-Share Alike 4.0 International License.