International Journal of Education & the Arts

Volume 8 Number 13

October 7, 2007

Creating a Self: A Narrative and Holistic Perspective

Mary Beattie
Ontario Institute for Studies in Education
The University of Toronto, Canada
Citation: Beattie, M. (2007). Creating a self: A narrative and holistic perspective. International Journal of Education & the Arts, 8(13). Retrieved [date] from
The paper presents insights into the creation and re-creation of a narrative from the perspective of two female students, Phillipa and Eva, at Corktown Community High School. Corktown is an alternative high school which focuses on the development of the whole person-creative, intellectual, social, emotional, aesthetic and physical. The school is connected to the external community in significant ways, and there is an emphasis on freedom of expression, self-government, and autonomy within a collaborative work culture. Their narrative excerpts show the interconnectedness of the intellectual, imaginative, emotional, and social dimensions of their lives, and the ways in which they bring all these to bear on the creation of an identity that is true to the persons they are and to the persons they want to become. Phillipa and Eva provide insights into the realities and complexities of adolescents' lives, and the ways in which these two young women learned to refigure the past and to engage in the ongoing process of creating new narratives for their lives in which they could be successful both personally and academically.

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