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Who is this self I'm supposed to be expressing? : narrative inquiry into the art and learning of twelve women visual arts students

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Who is this self I'm supposed to be expressing? : narrative inquiry into the art and learning of twelve women visual arts students

Cooley, Georgina Miriam (1996) Who is this self I'm supposed to be expressing? : narrative inquiry into the art and learning of twelve women visual arts students. PhD thesis, Concordia University.

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Abstract

The life narratives of twelve women visual arts students at Concordia University, Montreal form the core of this study. Consistent with the concept of feminist narrative inquiry, discussion of the author's academic, artistic and teaching experiences establishes the background for the study. Interviews focused on students' life stories and their self-selected art works. Diverse personal histories and evolving perspectives on art making, self concept and learning were revealed. Regardless of age and life experience, these women regard their art learning as catalytic in their growth toward subjectivity, and personal, social and cultural agency. Links are drawn between expectations, life experiences, family relationships (particularly with fathers), art production, and their commentary on creative engagement. Students expected to acquire artistic skills, aesthetic knowledge, and to become competent art makers. The study presents examples of how those expectations were met of frustrated. The women tell how they acquired skills and knowledge and came to see themselves as artist with ideas to express. The interrelationship of personal experience, self reflection, the influence of teachers, and exposure to new ideas, is shown to be significant in developing artistic content. The students' stories, viewed in relation to established proposals of learning dynamics, create new narratives of visual arts learning. Work by Belenky, Clinchy, Goldberger & Tarule in Womens' Ways of Knowing, provides insights into standpoints that these students assumed in certain situations. Examples are given of how these personal points of view were manifested in the students' art work, attitudes, and interactions with instructors. Prof. Stan Homer's proposal of aesthetic response and creative processes offers a concept of learning grounded in Winnicottian theory, wherein illusionistic fusion with the work in progress is encouraged. The teacher's role is then to establish critical distance and assist the student through the inevitable disillusionment. The study focuses on positive learning experiences and defines the concepts of the "good enough teacher" who models the skills and knowledge of art making, who makes knowledge available to students, and who fosters the student's illusion of artistic achievement until she can appreciate the disillusionment of critical discussion.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Fine Arts > Art Education
Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Authors:Cooley, Georgina Miriam
Pagination:vii, 380 leaves ; 29 cm.
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:Theses (Ph.D.)
Program:Dept. of Art Education
Date:1996
Thesis Supervisor(s):Sacca, Elizabeth J
ID Code:143
Deposited By:Concordia University Libraries
Deposited On:27 Aug 2009 13:10
Last Modified:08 Dec 2010 10:12
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