It is widely recognised that we are living through an `age of the narrative'. Many of the constituent disciplines in the social sciences resonate with this trend by using life history and narrative approaches and methods. As we move on from the modernist period which prioritised objectivity into the postmodern regard for subjectivity, this resort to narrative is likely to become more apparent and explicit in academic as well as social and commercial discourse.
One aspect of this narrative form which is commonly overlooked is that of the pedagogic encounter. This is the phenomenon which is addressed by all narrative and biographical research. Fundamentally reflecting and examining the narrative of our lives in the process of learning, this book provides a series of studies and guidelines for what we have termed `narrative pedagogy.' It presents a resource for an exploration of those narrative processes that can lead to meaningful change and development for individuals and groups within a learning environment and in life-learning. This focus on life history allows us to identify and support routes to learning within the narrative landscape of learners and through these pedagogic encounters.
Ivor F. Goodson is Professor of Learning Theory at the University of Brighton, and Joss Owen Visiting Professor at the University of Plymouth (UK). He is the founding editor of the Journal of Education Policy. Goodson is also a research fellow at the Guerrand-Hermes Foundation for Peace. Scherto R. Gill is a research fellow at the Guerrand-Hermes Foundation for Peace. She is also a visiting fellow at the University of Sussex, where she teaches at the masters' and doctoral levels.