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Students’ narrative action in social science teaching in Swedish upper secondary schools – a call for increased attention to students’ storytelling as conditions for the renewal of society and of social science teaching
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Teaching and Learning. Högskolan Dalarna; Falun, Sverige.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-1776-478X
Number of Authors: 22023 (English)In: NOFA9 Education, knowledge and Bildung in a global world: Book of abstracts / [ed] Åbo Akademi University, Vaasa: Åbo Akademi University , 2023, p. 101-101Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Taking on a narrative analysis of social studies teaching carried out in Swedish upper secondary schools (Blennow & Olson, in press), the aim of the presentation is revealed: to stress the need to pay (increased) attention to the contextual and situated limits and openings of the conceivable repertoire of legitimate stories of social studies in the Swedish context and its related research. In focusing on students' unique situated and collective interweaving of their 'own' experiences with established cultural and political knowledge repertoires, we wish to make a case for the potential involved in this storytelling: a renewal of society and of students’ ways of acting and being in society. If meagre attention is provided to this interweaving, we argue that there is a danger that this renewal of society as well as of social studies education will get lost, or at least disturbed, in an undesirable way. The narrative analysis on which the presentation is based was based on is a) field notes from classroom observations of every social science lesson for approximately six weeks in each class, in a medium-sized city in southern Sweden, and b) 36 transcribed interviews with social studies teachers and students. The theoretical-analytical grid in the analysis was the sociologist Czarniawska’s (2004) narrative theory, where the students’ storytelling attempts at sense making and action in encounters with the subject matter content was approached in terms of emplotments. In the analysis, Frank's (2015) ethnographic advice, to be widely inclusive at this stage, ‘cultivating reflexive uncertainty about which stories will eventually be most useful’ (2015, p. 39), was followed. Through the analysis, the 'repertoire of legitimate stories' about society in social studies teaching and students' attempts at sense making and action through their own social studies storytelling was rendered visible. The analysis rendered visible to what extent and in what ways the students insert cultural narratives into the subject matter teaching repertoire through their own subject storytelling. Out of the analysis, the transformational potential of these encounters, i.e., the emplotments, concerning society and students' ways of acting and being in society. Furthermore, it indicates the limits and openings of social studies teaching itself as a matter of predetermined ‘truth telling’, that is, as already-established socio-political knowledge repertoires.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Vaasa: Åbo Akademi University , 2023. p. 101-101
Keywords [en]
Social studies, Teaching, Upper secondary students, Narratives, Storytelling, Social science education
National Category
Didactics
Research subject
Teaching and Learning with Specialisation in the Social Sciences Education
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-219010OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-219010DiVA, id: diva2:1778418
Conference
NOFA9, Education, knowledge and Bildung in a global world, May 9–11, 2023, Vaasa, Finland
Available from: 2023-07-02 Created: 2023-07-02 Last updated: 2023-07-24Bibliographically approved

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Olson, Maria

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