Submit a Manuscript to the Journal

Studies in the Education of Adults

For a Special Issue on

Adult education and feminist museums, libraries and heritage sites

Abstract deadline
25 March 2024

Manuscript deadline
21 October 2024

Cover image - Studies in the Education of Adults

Special Issue Editor(s)

Kerry Harman, Birkbeck, University of London
[email protected]

Darlene Clover, University of Victoria, Canada
[email protected]

Gaby Franger, International Association of Women's Museums (IAWM)
[email protected]

Claudia Diaz, University of Victoria, Canada
[email protected]

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Adult education and feminist museums, libraries and heritage sites

Asymmetries of hetero-patriarchal colonial power that shape, maintain, and mobilise gender injustice and oppression are so deeply embedded in all our institutional and organizational structures, social and cultural practices, and interpersonal relationships that it has proven difficult to see a way out (e.g., Ahmed, 2017; Green, 2017; hooks,1989). As feminist scholar Solnit asserts (2014, p. 10), we are faced today with a “failure of the imagination”, which for us means a failure of our educational work to instil more fully alternative visions of how a decolonised, gender just and ecologically healthy world could look, feel, and function.

One pedagogical response to these seemingly intractable problems is being provided by feminist adult educators who are working in community and universities and using imaginative, arts-based and creative practices to disrupt heteropatriarchal practices of exclusion, oppression, and misrepresentation, and equally importantly, to encourage the imagination and a sense of hope and future possibility (e.g. Butterwick & Roy, 2019; Clover et al., 2022; Etienne, 2016; Manicom & Walters, 2012). A recent Special Issue of this journal focused on ‘adult education, the arts and creativity’ (Dickson & Clover, 2021).

In parallel to this is another important group that is also responding pedagogically to gender injustice across the globe. This includes educators, artists and curators working with and in women’s museums, libraries and heritage sites. These institutions act as intentional spaces for education and learning to awaken what Green (1995, p. 28) calls “the ordinarily unseen, [and] unheard.” Through their own forms of imaginative, arts-based and creative practices, these institutions too work in the interests of gender and social justice, transformation and change. However, the educational work of women’s museums, libraries and heritage is insufficiently documented in the adult and feminist education literature. How might relationships between pedagogy, power and resistances be able to be better understood by focusing on these sites and pedagogic approaches?

This special edition invites papers and other creative outputs that will help to better understand the part played by women’s museums, libraries and heritage sites in evoking a new feminist and gender just imaginary. Papers will examine the pedagogies that are typically used in these spaces, the feminist concepts underpinning these pedagogical approaches and how these approaches contribute to broader social change and transformation and enhanced gender justice. This Special Issue will provide a better understanding of how feminist educators working in women’s museums and libraries are critically and creatively rupturing, reframing, restorying, rehistoricising, rewriting and reimaging a more gender just future. The Call for Papers encourages co-authored papers in an effort to promote collaboration, conversation and collective knowledge production between feminist adult educators and curators and educators in women’s museums, libraries and heritage sites. To promote a range of texts and voices, we will accept various categories of proposals. See ‘Submission Instructions’ for further details.

Research papers, blogs and other more creative outputs might consider the following topics (but these are not exhaustive):

  • the varied aesthetic/creative approaches that are being used in feminist museums, libraries and heritage sites and the feminist conceptions underpinning these approaches.
  • the ways these aesthetic/creative practices contribute to learning, social change and transformation and enhanced gender justice. The focus here could be on various pedagogic elements that are a feature of aesthetic approaches and might include: building relationships, experimentation, disruption, ambiguity, unknowability, creating risk and contradictions, dissensus.
  • explorations of the voices that are attended to and the changes that become possible in feminist museums, libraries and heritage sites through creative pedagogic approaches.
  • analyses of the ways the approaches of feminist adult educators and feminist curators in feminist museums, libraries and heritage sites differ and converge ontologically, epistemologically and axiologically?
  • reflection on what adult educators might learn from educators and curators in feminist museums, libraries and heritage sites as well as what feminist adult educators might contribute to theorising learning and social transformation and change.
  • how might relationships between pedagogy, power and resistances be able to be better understood by focusing on these sites and pedagogic approaches?

References

Ahmed, S. (2017). Living a feminist life. Duke University Press.

Clover, D. E., Harman, K., & Sanford, K. (Eds.). (2022). Feminism, Adult Education and Creative Possibility: Imaginative Responses. Bloomsbury

Dickson, N. & Clover D.E. (2021). Adult education, the arts and creativity. Studies in the          Education of Adults, 53(2).

Etienne, J. (2016). Learning in Womanist Ways: Narratives of first-generation African Caribbean women. Trentham Books.

Green, M. (1995). Releasing the imagination.

Green, J. (Ed.) (2017). Making space for Indigenous feminism (2nd Edition). Fernwood.

hooks, b. (1989). Talking back: thinking feminist, thinking Black?. South End Press.

Manicom, L. & Walters, S. (Eds.) (2012). Feminist popular education: Creating pedagogies of possibility. PalgraveMacMillian.

Solnit, R. (24 April 2014). Woolf’s darkness: Embracing the inexplicable. The New Yorker.

Submission Instructions

To promote a range of texts and voices, we will accept proposals in the following categories:

  • A 500-word abstract for research papers. The selected articles will be double-blind peer reviewed, and, if accepted, will be published as part of this special issue.
  • Proposals for short thought pieces, blog posts, zines, short videos, virtual exhibitions, podcasts, and photographic essays to be published as part of our online and open access special issue on the journal’s official blog. Please note that these submissions will not be peer reviewed but they will be reviewed by the Editors. Examples can be found in the Studies in the Education of Adults’ blog [https://studiesintheeducationofadults.wordpress.com/ ].

The expected publication date for the Special Issue will be Autumn 2025.

If you are interested in contributing to the Special Issue, please provide either: a 500-word abstract (no more than this) if submitting an article; or a short proposal (1-2 paragraphs) describing your alternative submission by 25 March 2024 to Kerry Harman: [email protected]. Please use ‘Proposal for Studies Special Issue’ in the email subject.

Instructions for AuthorsSubmit an Article