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ERIC Number: EJ893518
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 14
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 62
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-1350-4622
Developing Environmental Agency and Engagement through Young People's Fiction
Bigger, Stephen; Webb, Jean
Environmental Education Research, v16 n3-4 p401-414 2010
This article explores the extent to which stories for young people encourage environmental engagement and a sense of agency. Our discussion is informed by the work of Paul Ricoeur (on hermeneutics and narrative), John Dewey (on primacy of experience) and John Macmurray (on personal agency in society). We understand fiction reading about place as hermeneutical, that is, interpreting understanding by combining what is read with what is experienced. We investigate this view through examples of four children's writers: Ernest Thompson Seton, Kenneth Grahame, Michelle Paver and Philip Pullman. We draw attention to notions of critical dialogue and active democratic citizenship. With a focus on the educational potential of this material for environmental discussions that lead to deeper understandings of place and environment, we examine whether the examples consistently encourage the belief that young people can become agents for change. We also consider whether the concept of "heroic resister" might encourage young people to overcome peer pressure and peer cultures that marginalize environmental activism. We conclude by recommending the focused discussion of fiction to promote environmental learning; and for writers to engage more with themes of environmental responsibility and agency. (Contains 4 notes.)
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site: http://www.tandf.co.uk/journals
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom (England)