Because learning scientists long have tried to understand learning as it is embedded in social, cultural and historical contexts, Tanner Vea is enthusiastic about how looking closely at social movements with a learning lens can help illuminate critical processes of social change in new ways.
Vea, assistant professor of Learning, Design, and Technology and Learning Sciences in America’s Penn State’s College of Education who also is affiliate faculty with the Rock Ethics Institute, is in the middle of a project that he hopes prompts activists to see ideas that can be put into practice and for scholars to see ingenious and sophisticated ways of learning that takes place in social movements.
The twist is that the message conveyed is fashioned in cartoon/comics style. “It was very important to us as co-editors and as contributors that we use these comics to communicate complex ideas in usable ways that movements and communities can understand and take up,” Vea told Penn State News. “In so many ways, movements know how to get things done and make change happen.”
Vea said the comic book project grew out of a grant that he and Joe Curnow at the University of Manitoba received from the Spencer Foundation to convene a group of learning scientists working on issues related to civic engagement across formal and informal learning environments.
The comic is now available online for free, so a lot more people can access it