This study explores the lived experiences of education liaisons in Minnesota and Pakistan in the context of cultural myths of modern educational progress, as envisioned in world society theory. Using a multi-sited ethnographic and narrative inquiry approach with 10 core participants over a discontinuous, more than five-year time period, it finds that an important aspect of education liaisons’ work is re-interpreting and re-working dominate social imaginaries of the meaning of mass education, such as those involving urban Black communities in the U.S. and rural, Pashto-speaking communities in Pakistan. This study both supported and challenged aspects of world society theory, resulting in four core analytical themes emerging from the work of liaisons: The social construction of marginality and its imaginations as an institutionalized expertise; the importance of ‘awkward’ political social imaginaries in relation to educational myth-making as everyday liaison work; understanding institutionalized manifestations of power and silence as enduring practices of bewitchment, and the tensions of engaging with particular legacies of racial and gender oppression, while constructing imaginative possibilities and social identities in institutional contexts. This study contains practical recommendations for educational policy and practice.
University of Minnesota Ph.D. dissertation. March 2016. Major: Organizational Leadership, Policy, and Development. Advisors: Peter Demerath, Gerald Fry. 1 computer file (PDF); vii, 372 pages.
Over-Medicated Boys and Girls Down the Well: The Politically Awkward ‘Imaginaries’ of Education Liaisons in the U.S. and Pakistan.
Retrieved from the University of Minnesota Digital Conservancy,
Content distributed via the University of Minnesota's Digital Conservancy may be subject to additional license and use restrictions applied by the depositor.