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Seminar: public pedagogy as multiple modes of education

strat outside

This event will be held on Thursday 26 June 2014 from 5:00 PM -6:00 PM in Room ED2.01 Cass Building in UEL’s Stratford Campus. The speaker will be Rebecca Coles of the University of Nottingham’s School of Education.

This seminar will discuss the implications of an ethnographic research at Broadway cinema in Nottingham. Broadway is a site constituted by multiple forms of education and this paper discusses each of its three main forms. The first mode of education is connected to Broadway having being, since 1961, an art-house cinema – the first, in fact, of the BFI’s many Regional Film Theatres – aiming to support both the film as an art form and the appreciation and study of it by the public. Today it typically consists of talks and courses in which people are told about film and how to talk about it. Ms. Coles calls it ‘acquisition’ as it takes place through teacher talk, is understood as the transmission and absorption of knowledge, and is paid for directly by its participants.

Another mode of education is based in Broadway’s Education Department which runs film-making projects with young people. The projects have a flavour of active and carnivalesque film consumption but also aim to teach the interpersonal skills and attitudes needed in the creative workplace. She calls this ‘performance’ for this reason and also because, funded as it is by public funding awarded on a project-by-project basis, it is also a self-conscious performance for the gaze of funding bodies. The other mode of education involves activities to support the creative industries and generate enterprise. It takes place both in the more and less formal events organised Broadway’s cafe-bar and in the work the Education Department does with MA Film Practice students which integrates them into this cultural or creative scene. Ms. Coles calls this ‘collaboration’ as it is rooted in the worlds of work and socialising and involves participation in an ongoing practice.

On the basis of this research, the paper will make an argument about the nature of what is often referred to as ‘public pedagogy’. In order to counter an understanding of education as only what takes place in a dedicated system of institutions, public pedagogy authors tend to argue instead that education is broad cultural and political processes. However, it is possible to be much more specific and to study multiple singular modes of education which are constituted across the domains of formal education, cultural consumption and work.

Paying attention to these modes of education allows us to understand the changing role of education in social organisation and in forming our understandings and participation in formal education, cultural consumption and work. At Broadway, education, particularly in the modes of performance and collaboration, is under threat by what policy documents call a “cross-organisational purpose for enterprise”. A central aim of research in the field of public pedagogy – existing between education studies and other cultural and media studies – should be to describe these changes and to analyse what is at stake in them.

To register your place at the seminar, please e-mail Veronica Burton through v.a.burton@uel.ac.uk

Image: UEL Stratford campus

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This entry was posted on June 5, 2014 by in Children, Education and Lifelong Learning and tagged .
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