A Story Cloth of Curriculum Making: Narratively S-t-i-t-c-h-i-n-g Understandings through Arts-Informed Work

In: Perspectives on Arts Education Research in Canada, Volume 1


Amidst the diverse worlds (Lugones, 1987) we traverse, inhabit, and live within, traditional epistemic and ontological considerations can privilege certain ways of knowing and being whereupon hegemonic narratives may become perpetually fashioned. The corollary is then, an (un)intentional neglect of other stories. Likewise, stories patterned along stereotypical lines (Adichie, 2009) can become sites of default when (dis)engaging with a multiplicity of voices and more worrisomely, an excuse employed by some, to dehumanize. Drawing upon my experiences as a Canadian South Asian female doctoral student, engaging in the ethical and relational methodology of narrative inquiry, I ruminate upon certain curriculum-making experiences (Huber, Murphy, & Clandinin, 2011) with voice and query how to go about humanely imparting voice. Framing reminiscences and musings as storied swatches, I autobiographically share pivotal moments leading up to my art-making choice of stitching a story cloth to communicate and re-present knowledge in one university course. These curriculum-making encounters (amongst others) composed of narratively thinking and art-making (Menon, 2015) continue to interweave my understandings of educational research and what it means to be a researcher learning alongside co-participants. Inviting for the potentiality of arts (Caine & Steeves, 2009) within narrative inquiry may work to unravel borders between the You and I, and Us and Them positioning that can shape everyday interactions. This chapter purposely advocates for an enhanced openness to heterogeneous meaning-making processes and re-presentations of knowledge. In doing so, the hope is to metaphorically stitch heart-full ways of communicating, learning, and being alongside one another.