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Deweyan Reflections on Knowledge-Producing Schools

by S.B. Schneider & Jim Garrison - 2008

Background/Context: Our article examines some of the philosophical underpinnings of knowledge-producing schools (KPS). KPS is an Australian initiative advanced by such researchers as Chris Bigum, Colin Lankshear, and Michael Knobel.

Purpose/Objective/Research Question/Focus of Study: We examine the epistemology and the theory of new literacy that KPS scholars put forth, which we strongly endorse, and address a lack of attention to embodiment and the emotions that KPS epistemology would seem to require. Our article is devoted to addressing this omission, which we frequently find in other approaches to literacy studies as well.

Research Design: We call on the philosophy of Deweyan pragmatism to provide a friendly critique and reconstruction of KPS epistemology. In doing so, we will rely on the perspective of Deweyan pragmatism supplemented by some of the insights of pragmatist feminism. .

Conclusions/Recommendations: In our reconstruction of KPS, we offer a Deweyan performance epistemology that resembles the epistemology championed by KPS in some important ways, but by emphasizing the role of embodiment and emotion (“bodying”) in making meaning and making knowing, it allows us to better comprehend what it entails to be a member of a community of practice.

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Cite This Article as: Teachers College Record Volume 110 Number 10, 2008, p. 2204-2223
https://www.tcrecord.org ID Number: 15191, Date Accessed: 4/13/2021 12:09:15 AM

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About the Author
  • S.B. Schneider
    Virginia Tech
    SANDRA SCHNEIDER is a recent Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction, Social Foundations of Education. Sandra’s interests include the translation of social practice theory and related sociocultural theories into learning technologies efforts, and investigations into how technology, schooling experiences, and structures may serve to advocate participatory democracy by facilitating the public intelligence used by the community. Her investigation into the development of new and diverse forms of public intelligence includes Dewey’s pedagogical focus on social inquiry and the embodied, transformative experiences that inquiry affords. Her work entails an analysis of the current Australian sociocultural change effort, known as knowledge-producing schools (KPS), as a way to realize Dewey’s ideas of participatory demoracy and public social inquiry.
  • Jim Garrison
    Virginia Tech
    E-mail Author
    JIM GARRISON is a professor of philosophy of education at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, Virginia. His work concentrates on American pragmatism, and especially the philosophy of John Dewey. Jim is a past winner of the Jim Merritt Award for his scholarship in the philosophy of education, and the John Dewey Society Outstanding Achievement Award. He is a past president of the Philosophy of Education Society and president of the John Dewey Society.
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