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Re-Assembly Required

Critical Autoethnography and Spiritual Discovery


Gresilda A. Tilley-Lubbs

Entering the academy as an older woman, the author had not foreseen the challenges that awaited her when she left behind a successful career as a public school Spanish teacher/department head to pursue a Ph.D. She took for granted her position of power and privilege in an educational setting, not at all prepared for the rapid demotion of respect, self-confidence, and salary that she soon faced as an older Ph.D. student/Spanish adjunct faculty member at a research university that would serve as her academic, and later professional, career home for the rest of her working years. In this critical autoethnography, she troubles her journey through the Ph.D. and the tenure process, as well as in her position as a tenured professor. She describes a process that led her into/through the murky waters and mire of academic machinations into the light of spiritual discovery to affirm wholeness and celebration of Self. What sets this book apart is the author’s refreshing willingness to critically interrogate her Self throughout the process.

Re-Assembly Required: Critical Autoethnography and Spiritual Discovery can be used in graduate and undergraduate courses in arts-based research writing, advancements in qualitative inquiry, autoethnography writing, creative non-fiction writing, women’s studies, and critical pedagogy. This book provides a methodological explanation of critical autoethnography and serves as an exemplar for how autoethnography can be combined with critical pedagogy to perform writing that examines the university as institution through the lens of personal narrative. This compelling creative non-fiction narrative is appropriate for both academic and non-academic audiences.

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Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Names: Tilley-Lubbs, Gresilda A., author. Title: Re-assembly required: critical autoethnography and spiritual discovery / Gresilda A. Tilley-Lubbs. Description: New York: Peter Lang, 2017. Series: Critical qualitative research: critical issues for learning and teaching; Vol. 24 ISSN 1947-5993 Includes bibliographical references. Identifiers: LCCN 2017001199 (print) | LCCN 2017009928 (ebook) ISBN 978-1-4331-2873-8 (hardcover: alk. paper) | ISBN 978-1-4331-2872-1 (pbk.: alk. paper) ISBN 978-1-4331-4015-0 (ebook) | ISBN 978-1-4331-4016-7 (epub) ISBN 978-1-4331-4017-4 (mobi) | DOI 10.3726/b10603 Subjects: LCSH: Tilley-Lubbs, Gresilda A. | Spanish teachers—United States—Biography. | Women teachers—United States—Biography. | Women college teachers—United States—Biography. | College teaching—Psychological aspects. | Graduate students—United States—Biography. | Universities and colleges—United States—Graduate work. | College teachers—Tenure—United States. Classification: LCC PQ6020.T55 A3 2017 (print) | LCC PQ6020.T55 (ebook) DDC 818/.603 [B]—dc23 LC record available at Bibliographic information published by Die Deutsche Nationalbibliothek. Die Deutsche Nationalbibliothek lists this publication in the “Deutsche Nationalbibliografie”; detailed bibliographic data are available on the Internet at

The image on the cover of a Gaudí ceramic design from Park Guell in Barcelona, Spain, seems especially fitting for the cover of this book: first, it reflects the Spanish side of my work, and second, it represents a life that was broken into many pieces by the academy, only to be re-assembled into a spiritual life of great beauty that moved from darkness into light.

© 2017 Peter Lang Publishing, Inc., New York 29 Broadway, 18th floor, New York, NY 10006 All rights...

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