1st Edition

Creating Third Spaces of Learning for Post-Capitalism Lessons from Educators, Artists, and Activists

    204 Pages 1 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    204 Pages 1 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    In this book, the authors’ post-capitalist approach to change focuses less on what we need to dismantle and more on what educators and activists are building in its place. Studying schools and other social organizations in the Global North and South, the authors identify and examine some of the most interesting counterhegemonic spaces in both formal and informal education today.

    They view these spaces through a lens of what Gloria Anzaldua and Homi Bhabha call borderlands or "third spaces." These third spaces are created in-between our lived cultural and social identities (first space) and the dominant culture that seeks to define us (second space). This book seeks to better understand how these third spaces conceive of learning, how they are created, the range of experiences among them, the obstacles they face, how they are sustained over time, and how they have built global networks of solidarity. The creation of global networks of third spaces not only signals a shift in progressive political strategy but also an expansion of what counts as spaces that are educational.

    This book is well suited to graduate and upper-level undergraduate courses in politics of education, sociology of education, education policy, as well as the humanities, sociology, political science, and the arts.

    1.Third Spaces of Learning: Characteristics and Conceptual Groundings;  2.The Controversial Legacy of State Schooling: Is a Third Space Possible?;3. Born out of Struggle: Third Spaces with/in/against the State;  4. Third Spaces Seeking Autonomy within Civil Society;  5. Pedagogies of Memory;  6. Social Movement and Activist Learning: Theory and Praxis;  7. Relearning Solidarity: Building Networks of Third Spaces for Post-Capitalism;  8. Epilogue


    Gary L. Anderson, a former teacher and principal, is a Professor Emeritus at New York University.

    Dipti Desai is a Professor of Art and Art Education and Director of the Graduate Art + Education Programs at New York University.

    Ana Inés Heras, Instituto para la Inclusión Social y Desarrollo Humano & LICH UNSAM (CONICET, Argentina).

    Carol Anne Spreen is a Professor of Comparative and International Education at New York University and a Visiting Professor at the University of Johannesburg.

    This is a timely book that gives a glimpse into the third spaces all around us where learning to live differently, with care and concern for living beings, is taking place. It demonstrates that a world where postcapitalist practices are not just an imaginary but are enacted in schools, in public venues, in the cracks of 'business as usual' is already here. The authors of this book have gifted us a guide to making this world more visible and thus more present as a focus for supportive action and policy. It is a must read for educators interested in actionable transformation.

    J.K Gibson-Graham, author of A Post Capitalist Politics and The End of Capitalism (As We Knew It): A Feminist Critique of Political Economy.


    Creating Third Spaces of Learning for Post Capitalism provides a bold reimagining of education through third spaces created and sustained by the resistance of educators and activists. This timely and important book offers readers a blueprint to rethink and build the kind of educational spaces that disrupt hegemony and promote activism and organizing. The authors are careful not to romanticize third spaces; instead, they demonstrate how they nurture creativity, solidarity, and power toward enacting revolutionary change. 

    Bianca Baldridge, Harvard University, author of Reclaiming Community: Race and the Uncertain Future of Youth Work.


    Learning in Third Space for Post-Capitalism caringly describes and theorizes, in a posture of collaborative knowledge generation, the prefigurative experimentation and learning taking place in the spaces and fissures within and outside of the hegemonic state–capitalist paradigm. Via cases from two of the world’s creative hubs – New York City and Buenos Aires – the authors show us that it is in the borderlands and liminal places of everyday life where we can find a plurality of already-existing actions and imaginaries where other-than-capitalist worlds are being invented and learned.

    ~ Marcelo Vieta, The University of Toronto, author of Workers’ Self-Management in Argentina: Contesting Neo-liberalism by Occupying Companies, Creating Cooperatives, and Recuperating Autogestión.


    Gary Anderson, Dipti Desai, Ana Inés Heras and Carol Anne Spreen have created a timely book in what often appears to be perilous times. As the grip of late-stage capitalism and white supremacy ravages the world, the authors bravely highlight the possibility of new educational worlds through resistance and struggle.  As we navigate what often feels like the end of days, this book affirms that many across the globe are refusing the world as it is and are willing to reimagine, plan, abolish and build anew. 

    -David Stovall, Ph.D. University of Illinois at Chicago, author of Born Out of Struggle: Critical Race Theory, School Creation, and the Politics of Interruption.


    Learning in Third Space For Post-Capitalism is an inspirational book for educational scholars and activists alike searching for concrete examples of education that supports more democratic, inclusive, and economically just practices. By comparing two global cities—New York City and Buenos Aries—the authors leave no doubt that educational spaces that prefigure alternative social worlds already exist in diverse political and state contexts, and that strengthening ongoing community organizing and social movement activism is the only path towards developing, sustaining, and expanding these radical educational experiments.

    -Rebecca Tarlau, The Pennsylvania State University, author of Occupying Schools, Occupying Land: How the Brazilian Landless Workers Movement Transformed Brazilian Education


    This is a vital book for these times and an antidote to despair. By weaving together examples of emancipatory pedagogy, counter-hegemonic praxes and networks of social solidarity in two vibrant cities, the authors display a tapestry of possibilities that a world beyond capitalism exists, in the present. The creative and radical imaginations and the social relations engendered in these "third spaces" is complemented by the authors familiarity of these generative spaces - their histories, contradictions and promise. A refreshing and innovative collection. 

    Salim Vally, University of Johannesburg.


    This book is a must for educators interested in understanding how different groups in New York and Buenos Aires are creating spaces for novel educational practices in search of justice for all. The authors make visible connections, similarities and traits of a pedagogy for the third space. They offer detailed and rich descriptions of how these spaces are being produced and performed. They collectively make a strong argument around the political and pedagogic relevance of already existing alternative ways of learning. 
    Analía Inés Meo, Instituto Investigaciones Gino Germani, Facultad de Ciencias Sociales, UBA-CONICET