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UAL Research Online

Positionality and reflexive interaction: A critical internationalist cultural studies approach to intercultural collaboration.

Waldron, Rupert (2016) Positionality and reflexive interaction: A critical internationalist cultural studies approach to intercultural collaboration. Innovations in Education and Teaching International, 54. pp. 12-19. ISSN 1470-3297

Type of Research: Article
Creators: Waldron, Rupert

The article is based on research with fashion media students exploring the place of formal curriculum in structuring student interaction patterns as they engage in collaborative group work. Early findings showed the cultural economy of fashion and fashion media representations in the wider world impact on student identifications of self and others. This at times constructed problematic boundaries and patterns of exclusion.

Having outlined these, the article focuses on action research responding to this, investigating the possibilities for intervening mediatively in student interaction to help students develop most inclusive collaborative behaviours. This used engagement with the discipline subject area itself as a means to address group dynamics.

Based on a mixed methodology including observations, interviews, questionnaires and a Frierean intervention, it drew on critical internationalist cultural studies perspectives to help students form a contextualised and critically positioned understanding of intercultural competences as a means to attain reflective control over interaction patterns oriented towards inclusiveness. This involved students in the joint project of identifying and negotiating the potentially very different responsibilities and possibilities accompanying their various positions relatively to locally dominant norms within fashion media. This included the responsibility to learn critically to question those norms themselves.

Scholarship on representation and communication has been greatly enhanced by increasing awareness of the fraught articulations of culture, power, and identity (e.g. Hall 1996). The need that this gives rise to of considering the connections between representations and the cultures with which they connect is also an opportunity for developing heightened awareness with students of their own culturally situated relations to these, including as they constitute themselves as a multicultural group. The paper shows how this engagement with curriculum can connect right down to the micro-level factors of interaction at which frequently unconscious exclusions occur, and so give students the critical and dispositional tools to interact sensitively, creatively and justly.

Official Website: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/14703297.2016.1156010
Keywords/subjects not otherwise listed: Internationalisation
Publisher/Broadcaster/Company: Taylor and Francis
Your affiliations with UAL: Colleges > London College of Fashion
Date: 4 March 2016
Digital Object Identifier: 10.1080/14703297.2016.1156010
Date Deposited: 14 Jun 2016 11:00
Last Modified: 28 Apr 2020 14:45
Item ID: 9389
URI: https://ualresearchonline.arts.ac.uk/id/eprint/9389

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