Abstract

Maxine Greene theorized that art and aesthetic education invite teachers and students to enact wide-awakeness. Wide-awakeness is a state of mind and relational practice lived out through actively approaching experience with interested attentiveness and careful consideration. To uncover moments of wide-awakeness in practice, I conducted a narrative inquiry instrumental case study of a high school visual arts course over a period of 9 weeks. In this article, I invite the reader into three distinct stories of the students’ enactment of wide-awakeness during this research study. These stories reveal how the students entered into, persisted through, and were impacted by their unique experiences within the course. As these narratives allow us to vicariously experience these moments, I highlight evidence of Greene’s theory in the contemporary context of a high school visual arts course. These compelling stories of change also reveal the power of a visual arts education in the lives of individuals and advocate for the significance of arts education in providing a well-rounded education for all students.

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