Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Humanitarian Visual Culture Curriculum: An Action Research Study
by Yim, Kim-ping, Ph.D., The Ohio State University, 2012, 371; 10631474
Abstract (Summary)

Facing world situations with an accelerating rate of violence and natural disaster, and living in an interdependent world that is deeply divided politically, economically, and culturally, my dissertation aims to find the most intellectually responsible way to address the idea of humanitarianism in/through art education.

My research question is: How can I envision a visual culture curriculum that maximizes the positive educational value of Nachtwey's anti-war photography in order to cultivate care ethics that may lead to the promotion of humanitarian education?

This is an educational action research initiative with a critical edge.

In Literature Review (Chapter 2), I address the theoretical foundation of this curriculum which has five dimensions: 1) identify with the victims, 2) address that the lack of equity is a determined political choice, 3) create a reverential condition in which to look at atrocious images, 4) cultivate relational ethic of caring, and 5) support social reconstructionist multicultural art education. These five dimensions are drawn from James Nachtwey's photography, critical social theory, humanitarianism, general education, and art education.

In Methodology and Data Collection (Chapter 3) and Data Analysis (Chapter 4), I lay out how this curriculum was designed, implemented, and evaluated. Findings indicate that this curriculum is promising, but not without challenges. Creating spectatorship of suffering is intimately intertwined with the notion of opening humanitarian space. Students' personal experiences and contextual information presented by the instructor play critical roles in constructing students' understanding of humanitarian issues.

In Conclusion (Chapter 5), I propose three key directions for research and policy: 1) acknowledging our moral constitution as co-spectators of far away suffering, 2) facilitating an in-depth inquiry on the failure of humanity, and 3) coalescing around global humanitarian issues through an interdisciplinary approach. This study is one of the first to create a humanitarian space in/through art education. A key implication is that art education can be an important site for social justice, civic engagement, and world peace.

Indexing (document details)
Commitee: Ballengee-Morris, Christine, Quigley, John, Smith-Shank, Deborah, Walker, Sydney
School: The Ohio State University
Department: Art Education
School Location: United States -- Ohio
Source: DAI-A 78/11(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Art education
Keywords: Anti-war photography, Curriculum development, Humanitarianism, Nachtwey, James, Social reconstructionist multicultural education, Spectatorship of suffering
Publication Number: 10631474
ISBN: 978-0-355-01696-3
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