Teaching Life Writing through Collaborative Projects

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Original languageEnglish
Number of pages11
Journal / PublicationChanging English: Studies in Culture and Education
Online published8 Apr 2021
Publication statusOnline published - 8 Apr 2021


Life writing is frequently considered as a private act of composition and reflection. What are the benefits and challenges if students are asked to participate in a collaborative life-writing project that aims to capture, explore, and reflect upon the relationship between personal life history, memory and place? In this essay, I will demonstrate how the incorporation of a collaborative life-writing project could help develop students’ critical awareness of key narrative elements in life writing, the ethics of representing life and the co-existence of diverse perspectives towards any subject of portrayal or representation. Drawing on student interviews, I will also show how their engagement with a place that carried personal and collective significance when they narrated life stories had helped them connect with the community and be empathetic towards those with whom they would otherwise have little contact.

Research Area(s)

  • Collaborative learning, life writing, memory, place, teaching and learning