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Life History Research

Epistemology, Methodology and Representation

Edited by Michael Anthony Samuel, Rubby Dhunpath and Michael Samuel

Much has been written about lifehistory research in recent times. It has been paraded as a counterculture to the traditional research canon, and celebrated as a genre that promotes methodological pluralism. However, lifehistory researchers have an obligation to transcend spurious claims about the perceived merits of the methodology and extend the debates around how the genre simultaneously problematises and responds to the competing challenges of Epistemology, Methodology and Representation.
In conceiving of each of the chapters from an epistemological perspective, the authors focus on how their individual work has crossed or expanded traditional borders of epistemology and ontology; of how the work has satisfied the rigours of thesis production and contributed to changing conceptions of knowledge, what knowledge gets produced and how knowledge is produced when we make particular methodological choices.
Since any methodological orientation is invariably selective, and the researcher is always involved and implicated in the production of data, the authors focus on what selections they have made in their projects, what governed these choices, what benefits/deficits those choices yielded, and what the implications of their research are for those meta-narratives that have established the regimes of truth, legitimacy, and veracity in research.
Knowledge production is inextricably linked to representation. In the process of articulating their findings, each author made particular representational choices, sometimes transgressing conventional approaches. The book explores why these choices were made and how the choices influenced the kinds of knowledge generated. The book provides theoretical justifications for these transgressions and reflect on how the experience of representation helped disrupt the authors’ essentialist notions of research production and for whom it is produced.
This book is not another celebration of lifehistory as a counterculture. The book hopes to be a deeply critical contribution to disrupt notions around epistemological authority, voice and power and how these are mediated by the delicate relations of the researcher and researched. The problematises and complicates the assumptions that frame this genre with a view to highlighting the potential hazards of the method while demonstrating its potentiality in shaping our conceptions of Ethics, Methodology and Representation.

Mathematical Action & Structures of Noticing

Studies on John Mason’s Contribution to Mathematics Education

Edited by Stephen Lerman and Brent Davis

John Mason has been a prominent figure in the research field of mathematics education for several decades. His principal focus has been thinking about mathematical problems, supporting those who wish to foster and sustain their own thinking and the thinking of others.
Among the many markers of his esteemed career was the 1984 publication of Thinking Mathematically (with Leone Burton and Kaye Stacey). It has become a classic in the field, having been translated into many languages and in use in countries around the world. Thinking Mathematically and other writings in his substantial body of work are used with advanced high school students, with pre-service and practicing teachers, and by researchers who are interested in the nature of doing and learning mathematics.
This book is not, and at the same time is, a tribute to the enormous contributions made by Mason to mathematics education. It is not a tribute book because every chapter is a report of research and thinking by the authors, not simply a statement of appreciation. All engage with how others have taken Mason’s ideas forward to extend their own research and thinking. At the same time it is a tribute book. It is about how research and teaching has been inspired by Mason through his substantial opus and his vibrant presence in a network of mathematics educators.

Multiple Literacies Theory

A Deleuzian Perspective

Edited by Diana Masny and David R. Cole

Muslim Voices in School

Narratives of Identity and Pluralism

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Edited by Özlem Sensoy and Christopher Darius Stonebanks

This book is a collection of readable, accessible, compelling, varied, voiced, passionate, real, textured, multi-faceted, hybrid, fearless, fearful, cautious, bold, modest, and inspired accounts of living Islam in relation to mainstream schooling in the West.
The book helps to make the diverse experiences of Muslim students (from elementary through university, student through professor) both contextual and complex. The politics and education about Islam, Muslims, Arabs, Turks, Iranians and all that is associated with the West’s popular imagination of the monolithic “Middle-East” has long been framed within problematics. The goal of this book is to push back against the reductive mainstream narratives told about Muslim and Middle Eastern heritage students for generations if not centuries, in mainstream schools. The chapters are each authored by Muslim-acculturated scholars.
This book will be of interest to teachers, administrators, students and scholars. As well, the content is suited to fields of study including ethnic studies, critical multicultural education, anti-oppression approaches to education, curriculum studies, social issues in education, social contexts of education, and qualitative research in education.
WINNER! of the National Association for Multicultural Education’s 2010 Philip C. Chinn book award!

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Edited by Bernadette Baker

Rereading the historical record indicates that it is no longer so easy to argue that history is simply prior to its forms. Since the mid-1990s a new wave of research has formed around wider debates in the humanities and social sciences, such as decentering the subject, new analytics of power, reconsideration of one-dimensional time and three-dimensional space, attention to beyond-archival sources, alterity, Otherness, the invisible, and more. In addition, broader and contradictory impulses around the question of the nation - transnational, post-national, proto-national, and neo-national movements—have unearthed a new series of problematics and focused scholarly attention on traveling discourses, national imaginaries, and less formal processes of socialization, bonding, and subjectification. New Curriculum History challenges prior occlusions in the field, building upon and departing from previous waves of scholarship, extending the focus beyond the insularity of public schooling, the traditional framework of the self-contained nation-state, and the psychology of the schooled individual. Drawing on global studies, historical sociology, postcolonial studies, critical race theory, visual culture theory, disability studies, psychoanalytics, Cambridge school structuralisms, poststructuralisms, and infra- and transnational approaches the volume holds together not despite but because of differences and incommensurabilities in rereading historical records.

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Laura Engel

New State Formations in Education Policy: Reflections from Spain explores globalization, shifting state spaces and education in relation to a diverse set of processes including democratization, decentralization, and Europeanization. The book offers a unique perspective on education policy formation in the modern nation state, in which education policy-makers have to take into account and negotiate not only pressures related to devolution and regionalization, but also policy ideas emanating from the developing European agenda and notions circulating within the global space. In this way, education policy concepts are not only formed in relation to national-regional dynamics, but are influenced more broadly by a complex set of supranational and global considerations. While the book focuses on Spain, this study reflects the growing influence of globalization on national systems of education. The book, therefore, will be of interest to those engaged in studies of globalization and education, and those with an interest in the contemporary political, cultural, and educational context of Europe.

On not being Able to Play

Scholars, Musicians and the Crisis of the Psyche

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Marla Morris

Scholars and musicians from many different backgrounds will find this book helpful as it deals with psychic problems in both professions. This book might help scholars and musicians to find a way out of their psychic dilemmas. From classical musicians to rock stars, from curriculum theorists to music teachers, from anthropologists to philosophers, this book takes the reader through a rocky intellectual terrain to explore what happens when one can no longer play or work. The driving question of the book is this: What do you do when you cannot do what you were called to do? This is what the author calls The Crisis of Psyche. The theoretical framework for this book combines curriculum theory, psychoanalysis and phenomenology. Here, the author looks at issues of emotion and the working through of crisis points in the lives of both scholars and musicians. Psychoanalytic theory helps to flesh out and untangle what it means to suffer from a damaged musical psyche and a damaged scholarly psyche. How to work through psychic inertia as a scholar? How to work through through psychic inertia as a musician? From Pink Floyd to Laurie Anderson, from Marion Milner to William F. Pinar, this book draws on the work of a wide range of musicians and scholars to find a way out of psychic blocks. From Philip Glass to Pablo Casals, from Michael Eigen to Mary Aswell Doll, this book draws on the work of composers, cellists, psychoanalysts and educationists to find a way out of psychic meltdowns.

Organizing the Curriculum

Perspectives on Teaching the US Labor Movement

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Edited by Rob Linné, Leigh Benin and Adrienne Sosin

Contemporary American youth live in a culture that ignores or denigrates labor unions. Mainstream media cover labor issues only sparingly and unions no longer play much of a role in popular culture texts, films, or images. In our schools labor has been limited to a footnote in textbooks instead of being treated seriously as the most effective force for championing the rights of working people—the vast majority of the citizenry. Teachers have been convinced that to bring up class or to teach about the labor movement may be construed as “taking sides,” while the all-pervasive presence of corporate America in our schools is rarely questioned. So for all the talk of schools preparing young people for the work world, we are failing to teach them even the basics of how that world is structured or how they can be empowered through collective action.
Organizing the Curriculum: Perspectives on Teaching the US Labor Movement is the first book-length treatment of this blind spot in contemporary curriculum and pedagogy. Contributors to this collection—unionists, activists, teachers, teacher educators, and academics—interrogate the ways in which knowledge is constructed in school discourses, conceptualize pedagogical strategies and curricula that open discussions around class analysis and political economy via studies of the labor movement, and put forward an activist vision of education that truly engages young people beyond the classroom walls.

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Shirley Wade McLoughlin

With the increasingly techno-rational approach to education causing a sense of hopelessness among educators in both public schools and higher education institutions, alternative pedagogical approaches are needed to provide educators with the means to navigate through oppressive milieus. The author offers her conceptualization of a pedagogy of the blues as such an approach. This work is grounded in the powerful early blues of African Americans, identifying specific themes representative of the blues metaphor that reverberate in the work of early blues artists. Using a predominantly cultural studies lens, the author traces the emergence and evolution of the blues metaphor from pre-slavery Africa’s musical forms to the music of the slaves. She then closely examines the emergence of the blues as a form of popular music in the 1920s. analyzing popular culture representations of the blues artists, historical artifacts, recordings, lyrics of early blues, and other sources of data. From this material, certain themes emerge and are identified as part of the blues metaphor. These themes and their evolution are traced through other forms of popular music, including jazz, country, rhythm and blues, rock, folk, and rap. The author then uses these powerful themes to mold a conceptualization of a pedagogy of the blues, a pedagogical approach that allows educators to hope, to resist, and to transcend the oppressive environments that exist in today’s educational settings.

Poetic Inquiry

Vibrant Voices in the Social Sciences

Edited by Monica Prendergast, Carl Leggo and Pauline Sameshima

Poetic Inquiry: Vibrant Voices in the Social Sciences, co-edited by Monica Prendergast, Carl Leggo and Pauline Sameshima, features many of the foremost scholars working worldwide in aesthetic ways through poetry.
The contributors (from five countries) are all committed to the use of poetry as a way to collect data, analyze findings and represent understandings in multidisciplinary social science qualitative research investigations. The creativity and high aesthetic quality of the contributions found in the collection speak for themselves; they are truly, as the title indicates, "vibrant voices".
This groundbreaking collection will mark new territories in qualitative research and interpretive inquiry practices at an international level. Poetic Inquiry will contribute to many ongoing and energetic debates in arts-based research regarding issues of evaluation, aesthetics, ethics, activism, self-study, and practice-based research, while also spelling out some innovative ways of opening up these debates in creative and productive ways. Instructors and students will find the book a clear and comprehensive introduction to poetic inquiry as a research method.