With the approval of Governor Tarcísio de Freitas (Republicans), the São Paulo Metro decided to change the name of the future station on the 2-green line from Paulo Freire to Fernão Dias. The decision was taken by directors of the company controlled by the São Paulo government in January 2023, after an opinion poll with residents of regions close to the station.
According to Metrô, Paulo Freire’s name was only provisional for the creation of references in projects, until confirmation by research. The change, which surprised company employees, according to the newspaper’s investigation Folha de S.Pauloprecludes the educator to the detriment of the São Paulo pioneer.
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Patron of Brazilian education, Paulo Freire (1921-1997) is considered one of the world’s leading educators. His main book, “Pedagogy of the Oppressed”, is among the 100 most cited works in English, according to Google Scholar, a platform dedicated to scientific production.
Under the government of Jair Bolsonaro (PL), the intellectual became the target of constant attacks by the then president and his supporters. Still during the presidential campaign, Bolsonaro stated that he intended to exclude Freire’s methods from schools.
The bandeirante Fernão Dias (1608-1681) had a career linked to the exploitation of indigenous peoples. The future station is expected to be built at a point on Avenida Educador Paulo Freire, in the city of São Paulo, close to the Fernão Dias highway.
Metrô justifies the measure by stating that the name Fernão Dias had 57% of preferences in the survey, compared to 29% for Paulo Freire and 14% for Parque Novo Mundo. The name change generated controversy and criticism from groups linked to education and human rights, who regretted the choice over Paulo Freire, a symbol of the struggle for popular education and democracy. In a note sent to Folha de S.PauloMetrô stated that the change has already been made official and that the station will be inaugurated soon.
Get to know Paulo Freire’s trajectory:
Editing: Vivian Virissimo
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