Transforming subjectivities in teaching and learning

Savage, Meabh (2010) Transforming subjectivities in teaching and learning. [Conference Proceedings]


This research aims to identify effective approaches to teaching and learning which are inclusive of all learners. Specifically, the researcher seeks to identify spaces in discourse on teaching and learning, where resistances to oppressive power relations can emerge. The researcher does this by identifying how power operates within the classroom at a relational level within different discourses, which are vying for meaning. She does this by examining the influence of her own teacher-learner positionality, and its effects on the dynamics within a teaching- learning setting. The researcher facilitates an eight week art based learning group, underpinned by critical feminist methodologies. Using Freirean generative themes, she creates dialogue on learning experiences in participation with a group of women who have been marginalised in a variety of ways. Through the process of action and reflection, and reflexivity, the researcher writes a critical narrative through which she transforms her former teacher learner subjectivities to allow for a more inclusive ways of knowing, teaching and learning to emerge. The researcher starts from the premise that appropriate ways of teaching begin with conceptions of learning (Kerka 2002). That it is the ‘process of learning that made (and makes) teaching possible’ (Freire, 1998:31). The researcher deconstructs discourse on adult and community education in an effort to identify a theory of learning which is inclusive of all learners. She identifies feminist theory, informed by Foucauldian poststructuralism, as a theory and practice, of teaching and learning, which offers the potential for change towards more equitable social relations for all. It offers a theory of the person, which facilitates change in concert with the complex and contradictory nature of contemporary society .In discovering a theory of change by way of feminist post structuralism, the researcher transforms her former exclusionary ways of knowing to allow for more inclusive practices based on really useful knowledge to emerge.

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Research Teaching Linkages Practice and Policy Conference Proceedings NAIRTL 3rd Annual Conference.pdf

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