A Picture is Worth A Thousand Negotiated Meanings: Conversations with Women Regarding Credible, Still Photographs

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Title: A Picture is Worth A Thousand Negotiated Meanings: Conversations with Women Regarding Credible, Still Photographs
Author: Daniels, Megan Quinn
Advisors: Julia Storberg-Walker, Committee Member
Leila Gonzalez Sullivan, Committee Member
Colleen Aalsburg Wiessner, Committee Chair
Abstract: The purpose of this qualitative study has been to determine how and why adult women make meaning of credible, still photographs without the accompaniment of text. The research question was designed whence the professional literature was reviewed and decided upon that this questioned had yet to be addressed. It was then that practical perspectives were implored from four women currently attending four different community colleges, living very different lives. While the professional literature tended to emphasize the importance of visual media (albeit mediocre), photographic material and the interview process, pedagological inferences, and storytelling strategies that adults used when interpreting photographs, none focused on how adults make meaning and learn from credible, still photographs according to their personal experiences. In this study, the women formed stories in order to draw parallels between their lives and the people's lives featured in the photographs. They made the unfamiliar, familiar. Their unconscious feelings became conscious emotions, triggered by a moment represented in a photograph. Reflection brought inquiry, which in turn brought discourse. Through constant dialogue between researcher and participants, the four women negotiated meanings of the photographs according to their souls. Unbeknownst to them, they schematized and demonstrated Paulo Freire's theory of critical consciousness. Finally, by viewing, decoding, interpreting, and discussing the photographs, they acquired new knowledge about the distant culture of midwifery and homebirth.
Date: 2005-08-01
Degree: MS
Discipline: Adult and Community College Education
URI: http://www.lib.ncsu.edu/resolver/1840.16/114


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