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  • drannouchkabayley

What do art, science, NDEs and novel writing have to do with changing the way we 'do' education

Updated: Oct 9, 2023

My newest publication is out! And it's part of this weird and wonderful edited collection on new ways of doing research in and beyond the academy. In the chapter, I talk about how arts (novel writing), sciences (diffraction and the way light moves) and histories (the infamous tale of Countess Bathory) all come together in my newest project, a novel called 'The Blood Countess' to create different ways of understanding the world. In the edited collection, I take the opening part of the novel - which is about near-death-experience (NDE) - and ask, what happens if we see the world from the non-binary perspective of 'not-quite-dead-but-neither-entirely-alive'? What assumptions about the world change when we start imagine it from a totally different perspective?


Ok sure, but what has all that got to do with education? When we challenge what knowledge is, how it functions to create the world we live in rather than see knowledge as a tool that describes the world, we get to do different kinds of things with it. We get to dream the world differently. We get to create new dynamic solutions to seemingly impossible problems. The same way light shifts and moves its basic structures (from particle to wave) depending on the obstacles it encounters, knowledge diffracts into new forms, making new approaches to the world possible. What kind of worlds do we want to create from this perspective? That's a question for education, because education feels stuck in the same old boring patterns that don't quite fit the world we live in anymore. As scholar Donna Haraway says 'we need new stories to tell the world with'. I would add to this, we need new forms of education to create new responsive worlds...


The edited collection got a write up in The Guardian for - well - being weird and rebellious. Exactly what it says on the tin really! (You can read the article by clicking on the link below). My chapter is called 'The Heart of Research: Fictioning and Diffractive Writing as Critical Research Practice'







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