4th British Autoethnography Conference - ‘Positively 4th Street’; Encouraging Critical Reflection for mentors of new teachers.

    Activity: Talk or presentation typesOral presentation


    The resonance of multi-sensory stimuli especially music and lyrics are central to this vignette in which two secondary school teachers used the emotional power of response to the song ‘Positively 4th Street’ by Bob Dylan in a training session for mentors of new teachers. As an auto-ethnographer and co-presenter, I sought to give a reflexive voice to the several layers of consciousness connecting the personal to the cultural (Ellis & Bochner 2000), so that the resonances experienced between different worlds could become more fluid. In this way the deliberate articulation of “action metaphors” (arrival, departure, conflict, companionship, tension, delight etc.) through musical and lyrical experience (Winter 2013) were used to challenge the voices within the larger structure of the educational setting. Naturally because of the inter-subjective nature of music this produced resonances from both ends of the spectrum from the teachers, some very positive and others disapproving of using the performance for this purpose. Nevertheless as music rouses inter-subjective awareness, transcending individual subjectivity (Benzon 2001), the presenters continued to articulate the tone and expression of the lyrics of the song, some which could be said to epitomise the breakdown of a mentor/mentee relationship, or any relationship for that matter. The intention was to influence the quality and the style of mentor voices by bringing the subconscious emotions from the song to embody mentoring life. The presenters hoped this double-focus might elicit renewed ‘awareness of themselves and their feelings towards others’ (Winter 2013). Institutions and Selves Day 2, Session Two: 14:00 - 15:30, Jubilee G36
    Period15 Jun 201716 Jun 2017
    Event titleThe 4th British Autoethnography Conference
    Event typeConference
    LocationBrighton , United KingdomShow on map


    • Multi-sensory
    • Autoethnography
    • critical reflection
    • mentor
    • teachers