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From the Parade Child to the King of Chaos

The Complex Journey of William Doll, Teacher Educator


Hongyu Wang

From the Parade Child to the King of Chaos depicts the pedagogical life history of an extraordinary teacher educator and internationally renowned curriculum scholar, William E. Doll, Jr. It explores how his life experiences have contributed to the formation and transformation of a celebrated teacher educator. From the child who spontaneously led a parade to the king of chaos who embraces complexity in education, complicated tales of Doll’s journey through his childhood, youth, and decades of teaching in schools and in teacher education are situated in the historical, intellectual, and cultural context of American education. Seven themes are interwoven in Doll’s life, thought, and teaching: pedagogy of play, pedagogy of perturbation, pedagogy of presence, pedagogy of patterns, pedagogy of passion, pedagogy of peace, and pedagogy of participation. Based upon rich data collected over six years, this book demonstrates methodological creativity in integrating multiple sources and lenses. Profoundly moving, humorous, and inspirational, it is a much-needed text for undergraduate and graduate courses in teacher education, curriculum studies, theory and practice of teaching and learning, life history studies, chaos and complexity theory, and postmodernism.
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William F. Pinar

It is no secret that I locate study, not teaching, at the site of educational experience.1 Teaching matters, as the life and career of my dear friend and key colleague William E. Doll, Jr., make clear. One of the ways teaching matters is in its communication of subject matter—simultaneously the school subject and the human subject—the educator’s engagement with students and colleagues in the complicated conversation that is the curriculum. At its consummate, teaching can be in consanguinity2 with its subject matter. As Hongyu Wang observes, “Doll teaches what he is.”3 Wang acknowledges that “such a unity between the teacher and teaching is remarkable.” Wang quotes the insight of another remarkable educator—Ted Aoki—“good teachers are more than they do; they are the teaching.” So too is Hongyu Wang, whose teaching in this book is in consanguinity with the pedagogy of William E. Doll, Jr., a great American teacher educator and curriculum theorist.4 It has been my privilege and pleasure to know Bill Doll for forty years, first in upstate New York, then in Louisiana, and now in the Pacific Northwest. Because I have before expressed my gratitude for this friendship5 in personal terms, I will not repeat it here. Because I have composed an overview6 of his resounding scholarship, I will not repeat that either. Here I focus on Doll’s exceptional teaching and Hongyu Wang’s wonderful teaching of it.←ix | x→

“Wonderful” seems precisely the word,...

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