ERIC Number: ED347544
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1992-Apr
Reference Count: N/A
Body and Narrative as Cultural Text: Toward a Curriculum of Continuity and Connection.
Gough, Noel; Kesson, Kathleen
As suggested by current work being done in narrative inquiry, modern environmental educators participate in numerous stories by which they construct and reconstruct their personal and professional worlds. Modernist discourses have cultivated stories of the earth in which the earth is depicted as an object of instrumental value, a machine, rather than as kin, mother, or text as suggested by pre-modern societies. Deconstructing the modern metaphors of nature cultivated by modern science and industrialism is the first step toward reconstructing a relationship with the earth. Environmental educators can learn much from the narrative strategies of pre-modern cultures like Australian Aborigines and Native Americans about the assimilation of language to the world. Further, the western way of experiencing time (a linear and material construction) is only one among many constructions of reality; this conceptual system is being challenged increasingly. Thus, another step in reconstructing a relationship with the earth includes deconstructing common western assumptions concerning the material reality of time. The narratives of pre-modern mythologies and post-modern physics accept the fact that the creation of meaning in the world is a human and communal responsibility. Educators should vigorously participate in the creative reconstruction of a language that places human kinship with nature in the foreground. The discourse which may presently provide the most generative site for such a reconstruction is that of post-modern science fiction. (Thirty-three references are attached.) (HB)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Aboriginal People; Narrative Text; Native Americans; Text Factors
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (San Francisco, CA, April 20-24, 1992).