I can think of nobody as well-situated as Dr. Bernard W. (Bernie) Andrews to edit this collection of chapters on arts education research in Canada. Bernie was the founding president of the Arts Researchers and Teachers Society (ARTS)/La societé des chercheurs et des enseignants des arts (SCEA) which is a Special Interest Group (SIG) within the Canadian Association of Curriculum Studies, which is a constituent association of the Canadian Society for the Study of Education (CSSE). When I served on the executive of ARTS/SCEA (two years in each of the vice-president, president and past-president roles), Bernie’s was a consistently strong and supportive voice. His considerable experience was never presented, however, as the (only) authoritative perspective, but was offered as guiding insight (and, I will add, we were smart when we paid careful attention to it).
Though the result of a recent call, this peer-reviewed book (and what I hope will be a series of such books) was years in the making. Bernie watched, and nurtured, the growth of ARTS/SCEA members over the years. When the call finally did go out, after Bernie helped create an environment where such a call was both possible and desirable, the response was even more positive than expected.
The authors in this first collection remind us of our need for community, and of our responsibility (our duty) to community. There is geographical diversity represented from across this large country, as well as theoretical and methodological diversity, in the chapters. There is also a sense of togetherness with those, and other, diversities. There are calls to action and calls to play. We hear voices of artists, researchers, and artist-researchers. The life histories of others, and of the self, are presented. Locating my own work within narrative inquiry and poetic inquiry, and about emotions, identities and communities, I was struck by the narrative and poetic qualities of the writing and how the authors’ writings brought me up closer to their understandings and to how they were living their lives, how they were experiencing their journeys, as human beings.
I was honoured when Bernie asked me to write a foreword for this book. Some of the authors in this book I have met before and I knew something of their work. Some I have never met and I knew nothing of their work prior to reading their chapters included herein. As you, the reader, push deeper into this book, I wish you a journey where you will experience, as I did, the pleasure of getting to know, for the first time or more deeply, some very wonderful people who have contributed and continue to contribute to arts education research in Canada.
John J. Guiney Yallop
Wolfville, Nova Scotia