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Collective Capacity Building

Shaping Education and Communication in Knowledge Society

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Edited by Simona Sava, Claudia Borca and Gheorghe Clitan

The theme of Collective Capacity Building (CCB) is a comprehensive one, resonating with the complexity of the knowledge society. Such complexity requires contributions of a wide range of scientists, for a multidimensional understanding. Thus, philosophers, economists, educationalists, sociologists, political scientists, psychologists, scientists from Romania, Germany, Spain, Serbia, Greece, Cyprus, Latvia and Sweden have come together in Collective Capacity Building: Shaping Education and Communication in Knowledge Society. Their choice to discuss current societal challenges in different fields, in a transdisciplinary and interdisciplinary manner, illustrates how communication, education, interaction, identity, science, professionalization and others are (re)shaped nowadays.

As it is increasingly evident that the challenges of a knowledge-based society are more resilient to traditional approaches and the new focus is on how to regulate new skills and capacities, the contributions propose a more stimulating reflection and dialogue on how CCB can foster progress in some of the most intricate educational, social, cultural, geopolitical and economic issues today. In light of this, the contributors have addressed the following questions: How can we define collaboration in communication and educational theory and practice? What are the tools and the rules adopted by CCB in various practical contexts? How can researchers develop their theoretical perspective on CCB after their thorough investigation of current and complex educational issues and societal challenges?

Culture and Environment

Weaving New Connections

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Edited by David B. Zandvliet

The inspiration for this book arose out of a large international conference: the ninth World Environmental Education Congress (WEEC) organized under the theme of Culture/Environment. Similarly, the theme for this book focuses on the Culture/Environment nexus. The book is divided into two parts: Part 1 consists of a series of research studies from an eclectic selection of researchers from all corners of the globe. Part 2 consists of a series of case studies of practice selected from a wide diversity of K-Postsecondary educators. The intent behind these selections is to augment and highlight the diversity of both cultural method and cultural voice in our descriptions of environmental education practice. The chapters focus on a multi-disciplinary view of Environmental Education with a developing view that Culture and Environment may be inseparable and arise from and within each other. Cultural change is also a necessary condition, and a requirement, to rebuild and reinvent our relationship with nature and to live more sustainably. The chapters address the spirit of supporting our praxis, and are therefore directed towards both an educator and researcher audience. Each chapter describes original research or curriculum development work.

Popular Culture as Pedagogy

Research in the Field of Adult Education

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Edited by Kaela Jubas, Nancy Taber and Tony Brown

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.

Confronting Intolerance

Critical, Responsive Literacy Instruction with Adult Immigrants

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Stephen G. Mogge

Confronting Intolerance: Critical, Responsive Literacy Instruction with Adult Immigrants captures the experience of adult immigrants who are improving their English literacy while confronting an intolerant political culture. It examines recent immigration policy and the anti-immigrant fervor that has gripped the United States and describes the perseverance and struggles of immigrant students to pursue their goals through literacy education.
The book offers a powerful and vivid example of critical pedagogy blended with sociocultural perspectives of literacy education in an effort to raise student consciousness and alter the political culture. Confronting Intolerances is an ethnographic, teacher research narrative that describes a year in the life of the author’s classroom with adult Latino immigrants, mostly Mexican, in a Chicago, Illinois (USA) settlement house.
Specific focus is given to immigrant students’ response to reading material that was selected to meet individual ambitions but was also selected to meet the concerns and anxieties that surfaced in response to the intolerant climate. The book describes students’ engagement with narrative and informational reading and displays the students’ evolving perspectives on politics, economics, culture, and race as these relate to Latino immigrants in the United States.
Through extensive classroom dialogue and descriptions of students engaged in political activities, the book explores the students’ emerging sense of what it means to become “American” amidst an immigrant backlash. It takes the reader through a year in a settlement house classroom, and reveals the hopes, dreams, and struggles of immigrants who continue to pursue America’s promises—those realized and those broken.