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Friday, December 02, 2005

An identity project

In one of my worlds I organise online and face-to-face learning events, conferences and unconferences. In this world technology talk is, among other things on RSS feeds, Web 2.0 and converging technologies... Power point is a dirty word - or rather a lazy option - and open space and the discourse of coming together to dialogue and negotiate meaning have been around a while. There are conference blogs, wikis, online spaces... In between events people follow each others' blogs, meet up on Skype, experiment, mix and remix medias and modes for communicating and learning. Taking intiative is the dynamic of doing.

In my other world I go to long meetings where we worry about the number of lecturers who still don't know how to use e-mail, where the closest anyone has to participating in a Yahoo Discussion Group is a friend who does (she thinks). The progressive learning event we organise will have a morning of fun activities for people to get familiar with each other and in the afternoon an outside expert will come in and give a powerpoint and "lançar um debate" (launch a debate) in the amphitheatre. In this world, my suggestion of starting a blog for presentation of, and reflection on, teaching portfolios is rightly dimissed as being too ambitious. I'm reminded - by people more important than me - that we have to keep our feet on the ground.

Both these worlds are ones I inhabit. Both worlds are ones to which I belong. My role in either is neither visitor, nor consultant, nor holiday-maker. It is as a fully paid-up stakeholder.

Is it suprising that I have to keep working on my identity?


Blogger Nancy White said...

I know that it must be painful in the context you are in: the contrasts between these identities are so extreme.

What I'd like to suggest is that there is a very valuable function for those of us who live at least parts of our lives out on the edge, as forward scouts and messengers. We will probably never be fully understood, but if someone doesn't go out first, no one will ever follow.

The scout role implies lots of risk, a fair share of failure and an ongoing lack of recognition for all but the most fortunate scouts (who I also suspect are master self promoters!)

Which circles back to identity. Maybe sometimes we have to just let go and not worry about it! :-) As long as we have friends who can see at least part of our range, we are lucky! (Like I have you!)

12/03/2005 12:51:00 AM  
Blogger bev trayner said...

Thanks Nancy. Sound advice that I really appreciate.

12/04/2005 01:45:00 PM  

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