Date of Award

5-2008

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

Major

Education

Major Professor

Barbara J. Thayer-Bacon

Committee Members

Joy T. DeSensi, Marcia Goldenstein, Ed Counts

Abstract

Interaction with the world begins with each window we open or door we pass through. Potentially our interactions alter another’s perceptions. Examining this premise through a philosophical investigation, this dissertation clarifies my position, roles, and the affect on the lives of my students by applying Maxine Greene’s (1995) aesthetic theory. Due to personal experiences teaching in public and private schools, concerns for effective teacher preparation, and meaningful practice, my research began with the question: What does Maxine Greene’s aesthetics theory offer K-12 education and educational reform? Theoretical underpinnings for this thesis were cultural studies, critical pedagogy, care theory, social justice in aesthetic education, and imagination. Each of these ideas filters the work of Maxine Greene in aesthetics education while leading me to add to aesthetics theory with my theory on imagination, the Web of Betweeness. The Web of Betweeness defines imagination as an electrically charged thought moving beyond the sense of self and into a multidimensional realm; imaginative thought spans from a personal thought into a creative action. The theory of a Web of Betweeness sees the imagination in a dual role helping a person discover who they are and who they may become.

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