Class and disability: influences on learning expectations

Preece, J. (1996) Class and disability: influences on learning expectations. Disability and Society, 11(2), pp. 191-204.

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This paper describes some findings from in-depth interviews with 10 adults with disabilities, most of whom had strong working class connections. It places the findings in the context of feminist post-structuralist theory. Whilst the research is not directly to do with gender relationships, the theoretical framework highlights notions of difference, cultural value and meaning which play a significant role in the power relationships between dominant and subordinated groups. The interviews invited participants to tell their life story with regard to educational experiences. Analysis of these stories indicated that expectations, rather than ambitions, had influenced most people's educational activities as adults. The combination of poor childhood experiences, class and disability attitudes, had a powerful influence on personal goals, which appeared to misrepresent real potential or real interest, once stimulated. The extract here is part of a larger research project which is looking at differentials amongst three different learner group cultures. The research is concerned with the mismatch of expectations among university continuing education providers and those of under-represented groups.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Preece, Professor Julia
Authors: Preece, J.
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Education
Journal Name:Disability and Society
ISSN (Online):1360-0508
Published Online:01 July 2010

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