Sunday, March 20, 2011

In the Service of What?

In the article "In the Service of What?: The Politics of Service Learning", Joseph Kahne and Joel Westheimer argue that there are two types of services that "draw from two different assumptions about political socialization and what it means to be a citizen." When referring to the service-learning program, Kahne and Westheimer argue that each type of service have varying personal and social outcomes when in practice.  The first type of service is a charity-based service, where the person volunteering their time as a form of civic duties. The idea behind charitably giving up a students time to help others in need is just to let students have an outlet in which they can perform their "civic duty" of helping others.  Kahne and Westheimer when referring to charity base service learning say "Volunteerism and compassion for the less fortunate are the undergirding conceptions of political socialization associated with this vision".
The second type of service learning is designed to get students to move toward a "strong democracy". This type of service is on a move "change" bases. The idea behind a change based service learning experiance is that the students will use critical reflection about social policies to help develope their own experiance opinion on certain matters. This form of service learning combines "critical inquiry with action" in an effort to get the students to see what the "real world" is like an to base their opinion of the "real world" on their experiance, which can helps promote a healthy democratic society.


  1. I liked your post because it really takes the main points out of the article and puts them in a smaller version. The two types of service learning both mean alot but are based on different things such as how you volunteer. I feel like both are very important and it is essential for people to keep volunteering no matter what type they are participating in.

  2. I agree that both are very important and that is is just important to continue to volunteer. I do like how this was summarized and very straight to the point. I think no matter what your own social or financial status it always feels good to help others. I feel that there is always going to be someone better off than yourself and always someone worse off so why not all be humanitarians and help out. It feels good!

  3. I agree with Luke, I was quite confused with this article in their position in the argument or whether there even was one but your blog really clarified it. I still think that charity can lead to change and that you can't have change without charity because that might be where change starts.