Materiality in Teaching and Learning
Edited By Pauline Sameshima, Boyd White and Anita Sinner
Ma is a curriculum. The Japanese concept of ma refers to the interval between two markers. Ma is somatically constructed by a deliberate, attentive consciousness to what simultaneously is expressed, repressed, or suppressed between two structures. In a dialectic exploration, the spaces between—private/public, teacher/student, old/new, self/other, among others—are probed in ways that contribute to the significant research in teaching and learning that has been undertaken in the last few decades.
Material culture is the study of belief systems, behaviours, and perceptions through artefacts and physical objects and is central to the socialization of human beings into culture. The analysis of cultural materials offers sites for concretizing the self and the self in context. New materiality challenges assumptions and clichés and allows for possibilities not yet imagined, perhaps even inconceivable possibilities. New materiality approaches accept that matter itself has agency. As such, this book investigates the intersections at the core of ma, engagements wherein the investigations create something new, in order to demonstrate the layers of the teaching and learning self.
Interpretations of the concept of ma articulate new definitions to improve the conditions, practices, products, and pedagogies of being a teacher/learner in the twenty-first century. Ma is a site for epistemological understandings, threshold learnings, and self and curriculum becomings.
Chapter 6. Of Lanterns and Liminal Moments: Living Curriculum in the Key of Ted Tetsuo Aoki (Erika Hasebe-Ludt)
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OF LANTERNS AND LIMINAL MOMENTS
Living Curriculum in the Key of Ted Tetsuo Aoki
Our most intimate moments happen when we are quiet in the bosom of a place we love or in the arms of a beloved, times when we feel we have been touched by something we cannot quite hold on to yet, but the touch is lovely nonetheless, a bestowal of sweetness undeserved and therefore truly a gift, one that bears with it an invitation to carry ever so lightly that exquisite not-yetness. (Herriot, 2014, p. 336)
These words by naturalist/writer/activist Trevor Herriot speak to the human need for somatic connection with another—be it a place, person, or other-than-human—one with whom we can construct an emotional, visceral relationship, one by whom we have been touched, physically and/or symbolically, emotionally and/or intellectually.
In another topography, Nicholas Ng-A-Fook (2014) acknowledges that from this place, curriculum scholars “have laboured to advance different (alter/native) interpretive meanings of and for Canadian curriculum theory in terms of its aesthetic, speculative, and distinct topographic characteristics” (p. 20) beyond the mythology of a national identity centered on “two solitudes” (MacLennan, 1945/2008) based on English-French histories and values. Ng-A-Fook credits Ted Tetsuo Aoki as a vital figure who, close to four decades ago, challenged scholars and teachers in the field to move ← 63 | 64 → “toward curriculum in a new key” (Aoki, 1978/1980/2005). With...
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