Memory & Presence in Teaching
Chapter 9: Presence and Dialogue, Auto/biography and Teaching
Presence and Dialogue, Auto/biography and Teaching
“A teaching life is only lived when it is pursued educationally…as a narrative of inquiry, a life filled with tensions and problematic situations and with the growth that ensues from moving successfully from one inquiry to another.” Connelly, 1995, xv
An interest in narrative and story has been part of my life as long as I can remember, long before I understood that life is lived as a narrative, and this interest has motivated the work presented and discussed in this book. There are still many questions that can be asked about narrative as method, and many concerns have been raised by proponents as well as detractors (see, for example, Bullough, 2008). Now, however, I want to highlight several ideas that are made central by narrative inquiry as practice and as method, ideas which have been appearing and reappearing in previous chapters but that now ask to be looked at directly, in order to bring into focus the main themes that have been developing: the importance of presence and dialogue, body and imagination in teaching and in the study of teaching. All these themes are interrelated and it’s difficult to look at them in sequence, but it seems important to give each one its due as they are all seriously undervalued in the current educational climate.
First, though, I want to address the notion of “wide-awakeness.” Clandinin & Connelly (2000) highlight this notion...
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