“I am turtle, wherever I go I carry “home” on my back.” Gloria Anzaldúa, Borderlands La Frontera
“Home” refers to community-based saberes : “knowings” or “understandings” of the world connected to community, family, culture, place, and identity. In this two-quarter program, we will use place-based methodologies to learn about specific local communities. We will focus our work in Shelton, Mason County and (to a certain extent) Thurston County. We will learn about issues of immigration, health, education, youth, economic development, homelessness, and poverty as they are impacting these local communities. We will learn skills in qualitative research, video production, and oral history interviewing and explore their uses in community collaboration and education.
In fall, we will familiarize ourselves with local history and with people and organizations in the region who are tackling community issues in innovative ways. We’ll consider how safe spaces of inclusion are being carved out in local communities. Our work will be informed by popular education and community-based research, as well as other respectful and effective approaches to community work. Workshops will be offered in crafting testimonios and counter-narratives, documentary video, and qualitative research. We will learn how to support community initiatives and explore strategies for implementing shared projects for just and sustainable development. We’ll begin to develop case studies of our region, supplemented by research on similar struggles and projects in other parts of the U.S. or internationally.
In winter, we will continue to understand immigrant communities and the transformations taking place in our region. To do this, we will examine (his)stories of journey, (im)migration, displacement of indigenous peoples from Latin America to communities in the United States. We will learn about funds of knowledge and contributions to a broader view of education and community life. We intend to deepen our fall learning and research, continue to build collaborative relationships, and explore ways of contributing to the community and educational endeavors. We will center storytelling, critical reflection, community-based video documentation, and participatory action research. Theoretical and educational studies will focus on: critical pedagogy; storytelling methodologies; and critical qualitative research.
While most of our meetings will take place on campus, we will also meet in community settings from time to time. This includes volunteer work in local schools or with community organizations supporting immigrant and/or indigenous communities. In winter, our work will culminate in a presentation or exhibit for the community in which our projects have been produced.
Accepts winter enrollment with faculty signature . Please contact the faculty to discuss background and interest in community studies and the work covered in the program during fall quarter.
Course Reference Numbers
Course Reference Numbers
education, teaching English language learners, media, community development, qualitative research, grant writing, and work with non-profit organizations.
Fall: $100 for field trip to Seattle and museum entrance fees
Winter: $100 for field trip to Seattle and museum entrance fees
With faculty approval in winter quarter, if consistent with the focus and goals of the program.