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A Meditation on Caritas and Teaching the Dramatic Arts: A Re(act)ion to Teacher Wellness Open Access


Other title
performative autoethnography
arts-baased research
teacher wellness
Type of item
Degree grantor
University of Alberta
Author or creator
Stratulat, Cynthia C
Supervisor and department
Conrad, Diane (Secondary Education)
Examining committee member and department
Parker, Ara (St. Stephen's College)
Eppert, Claudia (Secondary Education)
Falkenberg, Thomas (Faculty of Education)
Parsons, James (Secondary Education)
Department of Secondary Education

Date accepted
Graduation date
2017-06:Spring 2017
Doctor of Education
Degree level
Teaching is a high stress occupation that requires much from the personal and professional resources of a teacher. Strategies for coping with workplace stress challenge educators to shift away from habitual and entrenched ways of being, while opening a space for re-designing how the job of teaching may be approached. Current research in teacher stress suggests that both teachers and the educational system could benefit from taking ownership of the sources of workplace stress. Performative autoethnography is a form of critical self-reflection research. Combining arts-based research with autoethnography challenged me, as an educator, to explore varied and creative research methods. Through theatre arts-based research, I staged the need to live, write, and research personal and embodied experiences of teacher wellness. The re-telling of these life experiences, at the intersecting sites in my life story, became interruptions that expand understanding. Theatre, as political action, can disturb our habits of engagement and inspire change. A Catholic teacher’s creed of caritas breaks open a space for my arts-based performative autoethnographic study, to address emerging interconnections, within an educational culture of possibility. Caritas, in education, is offered as a disruption to current discourse on teacher wellness and joins a growing chorus encouraging transformation in the ways students learn and the redesigning of a healthy and sustainable workplace for professional teachers who facilitate that learning.
This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for the purpose of private, scholarly or scientific research. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.
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