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Title: FRETILIN Popular Education 1973-1978 and its Relevance to Timor-Leste Today
Contributor(s): da Silva, Antero Benedito (author); Boughton, Robert  (supervisor)orcid ; Spence, Rebecca  (supervisor)
Conferred Date: 2012
Copyright Date: 2011
Open Access: Yes
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Abstract: The Timor-Leste independence movement sustained a twenty-four year struggle against a genocidal occupation by the Indonesian military dictatorship, from the Indonesian invasion in December 1975 until the UN-supervised vote for independence in August 1999. This thesis argues that the capacity to resist was built through mass popular education work led by the first independence party, FRETILIN, both prior to the invasion and in FRETILIN-controlled Resistance Bases where the majority of people lived for the first three years of the occupation, from 1976-1978. This popular education work was initiated by a small number of educated leaders who had formed two groups during the last years of Portuguese colonialism, the Informal Anti-colonial Discussion Group of Nicolau Lobato in Dili, and the Casa dos Timores university students in Lisbon. These early leaders adapted the popular education philosophy and methods of Amilcar Cabral, Paulo Freire and Mao Tse Tung to the language and cultural reality of Timor-Leste, to develop their own Pedagogy of the Maubere Revolution, whose twin goals were the liberation of the land and the liberation of the people. When the two groups came together to form FRETILIN in Dili in September 1974, they organised a campaign of 'base work' in the rural areas, working through a student organisation, UNETIM to undertake a literacy campaign employing Freirian-style themes to conscientise the population about independence. As the Indonesians began their incursions, the student organisation became the base for new popular mass organisations of women (OPMT), of youth (OPJT), and of workers (OPTT). ... This thesis is the first insider account of the period from the perspective of popular education. It draws on the personal experiences of the author, who lived in the Resistance Bases as a child, and became a leader of the student movement in the 1990s. The evidence collected includes testimonies and recollections of over seventy people, the majority of whom worked at middle and lower levels of the Resistance in the Bases and in the rural areas in the years following. This evidence has been supplemented with extensive original documents retrieved from archives in Portugal, Timor-Leste and Australia.
Publication Type: Thesis Doctoral
Fields of Research (FoR) 2008: 130304 Educational Administration, Management and Leadership
Fields of Research (FoR) 2020: 390403 Educational administration, management and leadership
Socio-Economic Objective (SEO) 2008: 930299 Teaching and Instruction not elsewhere classified
Rights Statement: Copyright 2011 - Antero Benedito da Silva
HERDC Category Description: T2 Thesis - Doctorate by Research
Appears in Collections:Thesis Doctoral

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