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ERIC Number: EJ889456
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Oct
Pages: 16
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0092-055X
Practicing Sociological Imagination through Writing Sociological Autobiography
Kebede, Alem
Teaching Sociology, v37 n4 p353-368 Oct 2009
Sociological imagination is a quality of mind that cannot be adopted by simply teaching students its discursive assumptions. Rather, it is a disposition, in competition with other forms of sensibility, which can be acquired only when it is practiced. Adhering to this important pedagogical assumption, students were assigned to write their sociological autobiography. While in the process of establishing a connection between their biography and social history, students were encouraged to narrate their life stories using sociological language. After completing the project, they were asked to comment on their work. Student responses show the positive dimensions involved (including unintended therapeutic consequences) and the major hurdles that they experienced in executing the assignment. In the latter case, the major problem was writing a sociological autobiography qualitatively distinct from what might be referred to as "plain autobiography." Results reinforce the idea that sociological instruction is better handled when sociological imagination is viewed as a linguistic habitus which serves both as a medium of communication and an intellectual instrument of looking at the social world. (Contains 8 footnotes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A