I am happy to announce that Palgrave MacMillian will be publishing my book on storytelling research at the end of next year. This has involved 6 months of hard work, rethinking and amazingly kind reviews and suggestions (some by the fabulous Jack Zipes).

The book will be published as part of a special series: Palgrave Studies in Alternative Education

Photo credit: guvendemir (link to artist no longer available).

I think one of the difficulties will be finding an appropraite cover image as so many searches have resulted in primary children reading books, rather than secondary school aged youth listening to a tale. Any photographers or if you know a photographer with an appropriate image for sale please let me know.

Working book synopsis:

This book explores young people’s lives through fairy tales to demonstrate our complex relationship with storytelling including the emotional, behavioural and social aspects of story. Young people, learning & storytelling… provides excerpts from young people’s conversations following storytelling performances in secondary schools in the UK. The contents are based on storytelling research of international significance when considering the benefits of story and storytelling for learning; the interdisciplinary study of narrative; and the interaction of different narrative forms with young people’s agency (their ability to act independently and to make their own choices).

The book has two key aims, (1) to demonstrate through a unique “storytelling space” method young peoples’ complex relationship with story and their surroundings, and, (2) to make a case for the benefits of storytelling for learning and supporting interpersonal and critical thinking skills within the classroom.
It is for an educated reader with an interest in fairy tales, literature and storytelling or gaining an insight into young people’s lives, and in addition, for professionals such as: educators (from early childhood to secondary and higher education), people working in theatre, performance and drama, or those who are utilising storytelling in their work as a therapeutic tool.

The journey

The journey taken through research-based discussion and interdisciplinary theory will lead readers to reflect on the myriad of ways in which our lives connect to story. Educators and researchers can benefit from a deeper understanding of the stories that are told/read to children and the importance of discussing what topics children feel are important in those stories. In other words, to consider what lessons stories hold: the ‘civilizing effect’ of storytelling.

Emma Parfitt

Proofreader for business and academic documents, translations, and English writing.


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