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ERIC Number: EJ1070759
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2005
Pages: 9
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-1324-1486
Expeditions and the Social Construction of the Self
Beames, Simon
Australian Journal of Outdoor Education, v9 n1 p14-22 2005
This paper explores how 14 British youth were influenced by a 10-week expedition to Ghana with Raleigh International. It employs a theoretical framework based on the symbolic interactionist writing of Blumer (1969), Mead (1934), and Cooley (1962, 1964). The framework helps to understand how the meanings that participants held for different physical objects, people, and abstract concepts were constantly being modified through a process of interaction and interpretation. The findings of this case study show that participants developed a certain mental resilience, became more willing to undertake challenges, and gained a greater understanding of themselves. Interpersonally, young people developed an increased facility for working and living with people they did not know before. Finally, participants gained a greater appreciation of the modern conveniences they were accustomed to and learned about the economic and democratic differences between the UK and Ghana. Symbolic interactionism was a viable framework for this study, and would appear to be similarly useful for examining how participants in other kinds of outdoor education programmes may construct meaning and identity.
Outdoor Council of Australia. 150 Caxton Street, Milton, Queensland 4064, Australia. Tel: +61-7-3369-9455; Fax: +61-7-3369-9355; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Ghana; United Kingdom