Margaret Wah Ta
“The Problem of Common Sense”
How does Kumashiro define “common sense”? Why is it so important to pay attention to the “common-sense”?
What is common sense to a person or group of people may not always be common sense to those who are new to an environment. As Kumashiro said in the article, just because one is unable to cook the meals the Nepalis have does not mean one cannot cook. I found this interesting because sometimes people expect others to think and act the same as them instead of considering the current context or past knowledge and experience of a person.
Kumashiro defines “common sense” as continuing to so the things we should do. “Common sense does not tell us that this is what schools could be doing; it tells us that this and only this is what schools should be doing.” “Common sense does not often tell us that the status quo is quite oppressive.” Kumashiro also goes on to say, “the insistence that we ‘use our common sense’ is really insistence that we view things as some in society have traditionally viewed things and want to continue viewing things”. It seems Kumashiro does not agree with the way ‘common sense’ is viewed as in our society and schools.
It is important to pay attention to common sense because cultures interpret common sense with different results. It is important to be aware of our surroundings and understand at a deeper level what is happening around us. Thinking and acting based on uncommon sense in situations we experience can be a fresh approach to common sense.