Abstract

Adult education historical narratives tend to reflect a majoritarian view in which the theoretical formulations of African American and other persons of color tend to be minimized or forgotten. Drawing on the concept of counter narrative and Ricoeur’s concept of “happy forgetting”, we argue that selectivity in constructing adult education historical knowledge overlooks scholarship in the past 20 years that highlight the theoretical and programmatic contributions to adult education of African American adult educators. We offer two examples for discussion and propose that challenging majoritarian narratives involves conscious and critical reflection on historical method and the re-telling of counter narratives as a step toward reconstructing adult education historical knowledge.

Keywords

adult education history, historical narrative, historical research

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Jun 11th, 3:15 PM

Historical Memory and the Construction of Adult Education Knowledge: The Role of Selectivity in Majoritarian Narratives

Adult education historical narratives tend to reflect a majoritarian view in which the theoretical formulations of African American and other persons of color tend to be minimized or forgotten. Drawing on the concept of counter narrative and Ricoeur’s concept of “happy forgetting”, we argue that selectivity in constructing adult education historical knowledge overlooks scholarship in the past 20 years that highlight the theoretical and programmatic contributions to adult education of African American adult educators. We offer two examples for discussion and propose that challenging majoritarian narratives involves conscious and critical reflection on historical method and the re-telling of counter narratives as a step toward reconstructing adult education historical knowledge.