Creative dissent and constructive solutions: What contributions does Bakhtin make to our understanding of transnational education?

Year: 2005

Author: Danaher, Patrick, O'Neill, Shirley, Potter, Gillian

Type of paper: Refereed paper

Creative dissent takes many forms, including generative tensions arising from collaborations involved in dialogue and critical reflection on practice. From generative tensions arise constructive solutions that derive from, and build upon, multiple perspectives; they are expressed in socially constructive contexts that respect otherness and that strive to facilitate shared understandings.

The notion of dialogicality (Bakhtin, 1981, 1984, 1986) is pivotal to creative dissent and constructive solutions; it is fundamental to transformative education that has its aim as the mutual enrichment of learners, teachers and shared social contexts. Importantly, it takes Bourdieu's (1997) concept of cultural capital to new heights; the knowledge, wisdom and lived experiences of the participants in dialogue are respected and valued in the co-construction of new ideas, solutions and understandings. This paper argues that heteroglossia, dialogism and creative understanding are fundamental to transnational education. The writers articulate the ways in which key elements of these concepts manifest themselves in the educational experiences offered to students at the University of Southern Queensland, a university committed to transnational education. The paper illustrates the shift from rhetoric to lived reality for students and teachers in an increasingly globalised world. Transnational education epitomises constructive solutions that arise from creative dissent.