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What stories do I tell now? New times and new narratives for the adult educator

Edwards R & Usher R (1996) What stories do I tell now? New times and new narratives for the adult educator, International Journal of Lifelong Education, 15 (3), pp. 216-229.


Globally, the world of adult education has been much transformed in recent years. While there has been an expansion in the provision made available to adults, the profile of that provision has shifted with a greater emphasis placed on work-related and certificated education and training, and an increased diversity in learning settings. This has led to a sense of crisis over the meaning of adult education as a specific form of provision and what it means to be an adult educator.

This article examines the ways in which these changes have found expression in the narratives through which adult educators construct their practices and experiences as meaningful. We argue that there is an interaction between the impact of contestation and change in the field of adult education and learning, its narrative or story-telling practices and the processes by which the identities of adult educators are formed. We examine the significance of this interaction by drawing on three inter-related themes -- the so-called turn to textuality, the changes taking place in the economy and the organisation of work including the work of adult educators, and contemporary debates over (post) modern identities. In this way, we demonstrate the significance of new theoretical perspectives in providing insights into the contemporary condition of adult educators.

AuthorsEdwards Richard, Usher Robin
Publication date05/1996
PublisherTaylor and Francis
ISSN 0260-1370

International Journal of Lifelong Education: Volume 15, Issue 3

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