In 2002, hooks gave a commencement speech at Southwestern University.Eschewing the congratulatory mode of traditional commencement speeches, she spoke against what she saw as government-sanctioned violence and oppression, and admonished students who she believed went along with such practices.
Performative aspect of learning "offers the space for change, invention, spontaneous shifts, that can serve as a catalyst drawing out the unique elements in each classroom." In the last chapter of the book, hooks raised the critical question of eros or the erotic in classrooms environment.
According to hooks, eros and the erotics do not need to be denied for learning to take place.
She asserts an answer to the question "what is feminism?
" that she says is "rooted in neither fear nor fantasy...
(who addresses how the strength of love unites communities).
Hooks says of Martin Luther King Jr.'s notion of a beloved community, "He had a profound awareness that the people involved in oppressive institutions will not change from the logics and practices of domination without engagement with those who are striving for a better way." In her 1994 book Teaching to Transgress: Education as the Practice of Freedom, hooks writes about a transgressive approach in education where educators can teach students to "transgress" against racial, sexual, and class boundaries in order to achieve the gift of freedom.She has addressed race, class, and gender in education, art, history, sexuality, mass media, and feminism.Her father, Veodis Watkins, was a custodian and her mother, Rosa Bell Watkins, was a homemaker. An avid reader, she was educated in racially segregated public schools, and wrote of great adversities when making the transition to an integrated school, where teachers and students were predominantly white.During her three years there, Golemics, a Los Angeles publisher, released her first published work, a chapbook of poems titled "And There We Wept" (1978), written under her pen name, "bell hooks".She adopted her maternal great-grandmother's name as a pen name because her great-grandmother "was known for her snappy and bold tongue, which [she] greatly admired".She argues that one of the central tenets of feminist pedagogy has been to subvert the mind-body dualism and allow oneself as a teacher to be whole in the classroom, and as a consequence wholehearted.In 2004, 10 years after the success of Teaching to Transgress, bell hooks published Teaching Community: A Pedagogy of Hope.'Feminism is a movement to end sexism, sexist exploitation and oppression She has published more than 30 books, ranging in topics from black men, patriarchy, and masculinity to self-help, engaged pedagogy to personal memoirs, and sexuality (in regards to feminism and politics of aesthetic/visual culture).A prevalent theme in her most recent writing is the community and communion, the ability of loving communities to overcome race, class, and gender inequalities.To educate as the practice of freedom, bell hooks describes it as "a way of teaching in which anyone can learn." Hooks combines her practical knowledge and personal experiences of the classroom with feminist thinking and critical pedagogy.Hooks investigates the classroom as a source of constraint but also a potential source of liberation.