Working with life stories in health promotion education: A contextual reflexivity framework

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Y Sliep
A Norton
L Barakamfitiye
K Moshabela


The use of life stories as a methodology within a critical reflexive framework for working with relational reflexivity in health promotion education is explored. At the heart of the process is the dialogical space where relational reflexivity is facilitated, and around which the narrative story is developed. Examples from tertiary education will be given to illustrate how working reflexively with life stories increases a sense of identity and agency. In the context of Indigenous Knowledge Systems, it allows a holistic approach based on a social constructionist worldview using a narrative lens that acknowledges that our knowledge is continuously constructed in context and in interaction with others. One way to understand ourselves and others is to understand our own and each other’s stories. The framework which facilitates this process involves four iterative loops: deconstructing power in the collective; determining values and identity; negotiating agency and responsibility; and accountable performance.

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