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ERIC Number: EJ938411
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2004
Pages: 22
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 30
ISSN: ISSN-1074-9039
Re/Making Identities in the Praxis of Urban Schooling: A Cultural Historical Perspective
Roth, Wolff-Michael; Tobin, Kenneth; Elmesky, Rowhea; Carambo, Cristobal; McKnight, Ya-Meer; Beers, Jennifer
Mind, Culture, and Activity, v11 n1 p48-69 2004
In cultural historical activity theory, the entities that make a system are not conceived as independent but as aspects of mediated relations. Consequently, an individual, a tool, or a community cannot be theorized in an independent manner but must be understood in terms of the historically changing, mediated relations in which they are integral and constitutive parts. Drawing on a case study that focuses on the identities of two of the authors, we show how, by participating in the activity system of schooling, the identities of students and teachers are continuously made and remade. A teacher changes from being "someone unable to control the class" to being a respected and successful school staff member; a student changes from being a street fighter to being an A student. Identity, we argue, should therefore not be thought of as a stable characteristic of individuals but as a contingent achievement of situated activity. Our case study suggests that cogenerative dialogues involving students and their teachers provide contexts for the reflexive elaboration of mutual understanding of the identities of individuals who occupy different social locations in the activity system. (Contains 1 figure and 5 footnotes.)
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education; High Schools; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Pennsylvania