Can adult education and learning be understood without reference to community and people’s daily lives? The response to be found in the chapters of this volume say emphatically no, they cannot. Adult learning can be best understood if we look at the social life of people in communities, and this book is an attempt to recover this view.
The chapters of this volume reflect ongoing research in the field of adult education and learning in and with communities. At the same time the work of the authors presented here offers a very vital reflection of the work of the ESREA research network Between Local and Global—Adult Learning and Communities. The chapters showcase the broad range of professional practice, the variety in both methodology and theoretical background, as well as the impressive scope of field research experience the authors bring to bear in their papers.
The first section provides the broad view of research into adult learning and community development emphasising how social movements are at the heart of local and global change and that they are critically important sources of power. The second section focuses in on the practice of educators/mediators working in local and regional contexts in which the tensions of the wider policy and discourse environment impact on adult learners. The third section privileges the view at the close level of research inside local communities in the field.
International researchers and practitioners, particularly young researchers, who are active in adult learning and in local/global communities will be interested in this book. The emphasis of the chapters is on participatory and emancipatory social research. Empowerment of women in rural communities, involvement of communities in social and environmental movements, power-sharing in community research projects and the exposure of hegemonic, globalising forces at work in ethnic communities are among the themes developed in this volume.
This book explores the generative power of vulnerabilities facing individuals who inhabit educational spaces. We argue that vulnerability can be an asset in developing understandings of others, and in interrogating the self. Explorations of vulnerability offer a path to building empathy and creating engaged generosity within a community of dissensus. This kind of self-examination is essential in a
selfie society in which democratic participation often devolves into neoliberal silos of discourse and marginalization of others who look, think, and believe differently.
By vulnerability we mean the experiences that have the potential to compromise our livelihood, beliefs, values, emotional and mental states, sense of self-worth, and positioning within the Habermasian system/lifeworld as teachers and learners. We can refer to this as microvulnerability—that is, those things humans encounter in daily life that make us aware of the illusion of control. The selfie becomes an analogy for the posturing of a particular
self that reinforces how one hopes to be understood by others.
What are the vulnerabilities teachers and learners face? And how can we joker, as Norris calls it, the various vulnerabilities that we inherently bring into teaching and learning spaces? In light of the divisive discourses around the politics of Ferguson, Charlie Hebdo, ISIS, Ebola, Surveillance, and Immigration; vulnerability offers an entry way into exhuming the humanity necessary for a participatory democracy that is often hijacked by a selfie mentality.
This volume gathers stories about how various art and creative forms of expression are used to enable voices from the margins, that is, of underrepresented individuals and communities, to take shape and form. Voice is not enough; stories and truths must be heard, must be listened to. And so the stories gathered here also speak to how creative processes enable conditions for listening and the development of empathy for other perspectives, which is essential for democracy. The chapters, including some that describe international projects, illustrate a variety of art-making practices such as poetry, visual art, film, theatre, music, and dance, and how they can support individuals and groups at the edges of mainstream society to tell their story and speak their truths, often the first steps to valuing one’s identity and organizing for change. Some of the authors are community-based artists who share stories thus bringing these creative endeavors into the wider conversation about the power of arts-making to open up spaces for dialogue across differences. Art practices outlined in this book can expand our visions by encouraging critical thinking and broadening our worldview. At this time on the earth when we face many serious challenges, the arts can stimulate hope, openness, and individual and collective imaginations for preferred futures. Inspiration comes from people who, at the edges of their community, communicate their experience.
Participation can be a double-edged sword in that it can be used to bind people into agendas and policies they have little control over or it can help enable them to give voice to real and significant issues. Drawing on the work of Raymond Williams, genuine participation has to be an open and democratic process which enables all to contribute to the creation of meanings. Adult education in communities can then be involved in the process of creating ‘really useful knowledge’, that is, knowledge which enables people—individuals and collectivities who experience systematic forms of oppression, domination and exploitation—to think about, analyse and act on their situation individually and severally. By drawing on contemporary accounts of emancipatory action and participatory research the author elaborates on the role of adult educators in this context.
This book tries to reflect on adult education and its close relationships with communities. It is a modest attempt to maintain adult education in the scope of the community life against the growing schooling, the focus on employability, and on the labour market. In the last years it seems that adult education has become a kind of provider of diplomas, skills and competences and has forgotten its role to enlighten individuals and help them to share their community life with an abundance of richness, diversity, sadness and happiness.
Adult Education is intrinsically connected to daily life, and the life that individuals constantly edify in their interactions. If adult education is connected to daily life, one of the major tasks is to recover this feeling and to link daily life and education. I think that at present time, in a moment of intense reductionism, reality is usually presented as very plain, losing its complexity and diversity that are related to the fact that life is being lived everyday by men and women as creators and relational beings.
This book is the second in a series entitled
‘Learning and Development for a Better World’ and it explores the potential for self-directed lifelong action learning (LAL) by focusing on the design of development pathways with and for young adults. The book considers the reasons why LAL pathways are needed and draws on innovative approaches used by the Global University for Lifelong Learning (including micro enterprise, peace-building, music, sport and the creative arts) with examples from nine countries. The aim is to offer a timely response to the pressing global problem of access to learning and development for marginalized young people during the vulnerable period from their mid-teens to mid-twenties.
Cyril O. Houle Award from the American Association for Adult and Continuing Education (AAACE).
Cyril O. Houle Award was established in 1981 to honor the scholarship and memory of Cyril O. Houle, Professor of Adult Education at the University of Chicago. It is given annually by the American Association for Adult and Continuing Education (AAACE) for a book published in English in the previous year that reflects universal concerns of adult educators.
About The Book
In this award-winning book, the authors draw upon their earlier research examining how feminists have negotiated identity and learning in international contexts or multisector environments.
Feminism in Community focuses on feminist challenges to lead, learn, and participate in nonprofit organizations, as well as their efforts to enact feminist pedagogy through arts processes, Internet fora, and critical community engagement.
The authors bring a focused energy to the topic of women and adult learning, integrating insights of pedagogy and theory-informed practice in the fields of social movement learning, transformative learning, and community development. The social determinants of health, spirituality, research partnerships, and policy engagement are among the contexts in which such learning occurs. In drawing attention to the identity and practice of the adult educator teaching and learning with women in the community, the authors respond to gender mainstreaming processes that have obscured women as a discernible category in many areas of practice.
This tribute to Ortrun Zuber-Skerritt is a celebratory Festschrift of her learning/research action-packed life. Colleagues around the world reflect on their own learning, research and professional development, with and through Ortrun, in action learning and action research (ALAR).
Four Parts identify focus areas in Ortrun’s work and interests over the last 40 years.
Higher Education is the site for most of Ortrun’s work experience since 1974 when she joined Griffith University in Australia.
Organisations is a context where Ortrun has actively explored processes of learning, leadership and development in management education.
Communities of Practice characterise Ortrun’s work throughout her career, particularly through participatory action learning and action research (PALAR) in communities.
Futures focusses Ortrun’s recent writing advocating for PALAR as a flexible and effective methodology for responding to rapid change.
Here we see why Ortrun is a quintessential international scholar. And an ALAR practitioner/advocate. Her world view, understandings of knowledge and personal qualities naturally orient her along this path of inclusive, purposeful action. This is why Ortrun is a vital energy in shaping the evolution of the ‘Action’ family of scholarship, now including PALAR and LAL (Lifelong Action Learning). No wonder her life and pioneering work are an adventure story—not just of learning and research, but also of passion and action. This tribute opens windows onto that story.
Lawrence and Cranton present a unique research methodology involving fictional characters as research participants. Transformative learning themes are identified through a content analysis of six contemporary novels. The characters from these novels are invited to come to a virtual space, the Butterfly Café where they engage in a series of dialogues on the research themes related to their transformative learning experiences. Each of the dialogues is followed by a debriefing session to deepen the understanding of the original themes.
Readers are given a window into Lawrence and Cranton’s analysis and interpretive process as they engage in dialogue with Celie from the
Color Purple, Macon from
Accidental Tourist, Mariam and Laila from
A Thousand Splendid Suns, and others. The dialogues become a story within the stories told in the novels.
The end product is the introduction of a new model of transformative learning based on a metaphor of planting, cultivating, and growing seeds. Central to the model is becoming conscious, a process that appeared in each of the novels.
Readers will find insights into transformative learning that are outside of the standard academic treatment of the topic. Moving the research into the realm of fiction provides the opportunity for a creative exploration of transformative learning. Yet, since fiction inevitably mirrors reality, readers will be able to relate the analysis, the dialogues, and the ensuing model to their own lives and to their adult education practice.
Grounded in the field of adult education, this international compilation offers a range of critical perspectives on popular culture as a form of pedagogy. Its fundamental premise is that adults learn in multiple ways, including through their consumption of fiction. As scholars have asserted for decades, people are not passive consumers of media; rather, we (re)make our own meanings as we accept, resist, and challenge cultural representations.
At a time when attention often turns to new media, the contributors to this collection continue to find “old” forms of popular culture important and worthy of study. Television and movies—the emphases in this book—reflect aspects of consumers’ lives, and can be powerful vehicles for helping adults see, experience, and inhabit the world in new and different ways.
This volume moves beyond conceptually oriented scholarship, taking a decidedly research-oriented focus. It offers examples of textual and discursive analyses of television shows and films that portray varied contexts of adult learning, and suggests how participants can be brought into adult education research in this area. In so doing, it provides compelling evidence about the complexity, politics, and multidimensionality of adult teaching and learning.
Using a range of television shows and movies as exemplars, chapters relate popular culture to globalization, identity, health and health care, and education. The book will be of great use to instructors, students, and researchers located in adult education, cultural studies, women’s and gender studies, cultural sociology, and other fields who are looking for innovative ways to explore social life as experienced and imagined.
This book is the third production from the ESREA Gender network and, once more, an opportunity to let the readers discover, or to know more, for a better understanding of questions related to gender and adult learning. It shows how researchers can be deeply involved in this specific field of adult education. The notion of informal learning has already been treated as a chapter in the 2003s book, but it becomes central and relevant in this new book considering the growing complexity of our society.
The editors insist in their title on “private world(s)” but the content of the book proves that informal learning processes, aside the self, are combined with contextual opportunities, which have been chosen or not. Their introduction remains what has to be known about the concepts of gender and informal learning. The contributors enlighten the debate with their geographical diversities all over Europe, but also with their theoretical systems of reference and the social contexts that have been analysed.
With the first part of this book, entitled “private spheres”, it is a sum of painful gendered discriminations and injustices which are presented and analysed. We can’t escape to the emotions it produces especially with the soldiers after the war and the men’s breath cancer: both researches related to men and the specificity of their suffering. This is an interesting and quite new opportunity to question gender.
In the second part related to “minorities and activism”, we discover groups who learn through their organised fights against discriminations. Emotions let place to a positive energy when we discover the strategies that feminists, or migrants or also retired men find to question the society in which they live. The authors show us not only what is learned by such communities, but also what their environment can learn from them.
The last part of the book drives us to different “contexts of informal learning”, mostly related to opportunities and obstacles in education and work situations. Community training, social work studies, scientist’s work and management school are the contexts chosen to clarify where the stereotypes and the discriminations along the lifespan for women are. From East to West and North to South of Europe, it seems once more that the debate presents a lot of similarities.