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Storytelling and Education in the Digital Age

Experiences and Criticisms

Matteo Stocchetti

While the importance of the role of storytelling can hardly be overestimated, the impact of digitalization on this role is more ambivalent. In this second book-length publication of the programme Media and Education in the Digital Age – MEDA, the authors take a critical stance towards the alleged emancipative affordances of digital storytelling in education. The collection is inspired by the effort of making professional educators aware of the risks of the digital turn in educational storytelling but also of the opportunities and the conditions for critical engagements. Based on their research and field experience, fifteen scholars discuss in nine chapters these risks and opportunities, providing ideas, evidence, references and inspiration to educators and researchers.

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The Politics of Education and the Digital Turn in Storytelling: A Critical Introduction


Abstract Storytelling is an activity with important social and political functions. The digital turn in education affects the educational functions of storytelling in ambivalent ways. While the emancipative affordances of this turn are given much visibility in academic and corporate discourse, the risks are neglected. Education and storytelling are influential practices in the social construction of reality. The uncritical endorsement of the digital turn in storytelling, however, makes education vulnerable to the influence of technocentrism and its myths. The ideas that images “have power”, that digital community can compensate for the isolation of the individual and that the digital “revolution” brings about the “end of history” and politics are influential manifestations of these myths. The possibility for the digital turn in education and storytelling to open up emancipative opportunities depends on the extent to which educators are aware of and able to develop countermeasures against the oppressive tendencies associated with technocentrism and its myth. The chapters in this collection aim at supporting the efforts in this direction.

1. The Politics of Education, the Functions of Storytelling and the Problem of Control

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