This paper reports research on Northern Ireland students’ attempts to reconcile school and community history. Previous research has shown that many students in Northern Ireland combine these competing influences in a process that can be viewed in terms of the development of what Bakhtin (1982) refers to as “internally persuasive dialogues.” The current paper illustrates that process through analysis of a sample of four sets of student interviews with eight students. Findings indicate that although students are committed to “trying to look at both sides of the argument,” they often have difficulty overcoming commitments to their own community’s historical perspectives. The dominant factor is a master vernacular narrative that reflects the underlying political and religious values and beliefs of their domestic communities. However, school history does help provide insight, deeper understanding and perspective that can help soften and ameliorate entrenched opinions and positions.
|Journal||International Journal of Historical Learning, Teaching and Research|
|Publication status||Published - Jan 2009|
- Family history
- Master narrative
- Northern Ireland
- Official history
- School history
- Vernaculary history.