College of Education

About Us Admissions & Academics Research & Engagement Departments & Faculty Current Students

Upcoming Events

Switching It Up: Participatory Creativity in Community-based Programs for Youth

Champaign , USA
Education Building, Room 333

Education Building, Room 333

Add to:

The Philosophy of Education Discussion Group at the College of Education at Illinois is pleased to extend an invitation to its next meeting where Michael Hanson, author of "Worldmaking: Psychology and the Ideology of Creativity" will be on hand.

Event Type: Meeting

Speaker Information: Michael Hanchett Hanson

The Philosophy of Education Discussion Group is pleased to invite you to its next meeting where we will be joined by Michael Hanson, author of Worldmaking: Psychology and the Ideology of Creativity (Palgrave MacMillan, 2015). Calls for creativity in education abound, but what is creativity and how do we foster it in youth? For instance, is creativity an individual attribute or a characteristic of groups? To answer these and other questions, Hanson will work through some video examples of community-based youth arts programs (abstract below). Please join us for pizza and discussion!

Participatory creativity theorists have argued that we should move away from the extreme forms of individualism that have characterized much of creativity research in psychology and toward the study of how people participate in change. That participation is mediated by culturally sanctioned and personally learned roles and social positions. Building on distributed cognition and sociocultural theories of development, these participatory approaches to creativity look at many forms of agency that arise from interactions with complex social and material systems. Sounds good, but what does that look like in practice? This presentation will analyze real-world examples of interactions within two community-based programs: an architecture-based program for Kindergarten through 5th grade in New Orleans and a theater-based program for adolescents in New York City. In both cases, individualist creativity theories would seem to apply at first glance but ultimately fail to explain key aspects of the program's structures and outcomes. Participatory models, in contrast, fit the data better and give a richer description of what is going on in these programs. In particular, switching social positions is crucial to program process and outcomes. Part of this process involves taking up what Martin has called generalized others (planner, actor, director, provocateur, etc.), as well as particular others ("how the gangs in my neighborhood act," "how my mother uses the kitchen") and exploring those positions with each other and with program directors in what Ness has called the Zone of Relational Development.

Cost: Free and open to the public; lunch provided

Contact: Emily Comer