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Author

John Springhall

Bio: John Springhall is an academic researcher. The author has contributed to research in topics: Empire. The author has an hindex of 1, co-authored 1 publications receiving 63 citations.
Topics: Empire

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Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, Ross' and Nisbett's seminal review of dispositional social psychology to argue that OAE programs do not build character, but may provide situations that elicit certain behaviours.
Abstract: Within the diverse and sometimes amorphous outdoor education literature, “neo-Hahnian” (NH) approaches to adventure education are exceptional for their persistence, seeming coherence, and wide acceptance. NH approaches assume that adventure experiences “build character”, or, in modern terminology, “develop persons”, “actualise selves”, or have certain therapeutic effects associated with personal traits. In social psychological terms NH thought is “dispositional”, in that it favours explanations of behaviour in terms of consistent personal traits. In this paper I critically review NH OAE in an historical context, and draw on Ross' and Nisbett's (1991) seminal review of dispositional social psychology to argue that OAE programs do not build character, but may provide situations that elicit certain behaviours. For OAE research and theory, belief in the possibility of “character building” must be seen as a source of bias, not as a foundation. The conceptual analysis I develop provides not only a basi...

115 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, the persistence of the idea of character building in outdoor adventure education is examined in the face of strong evidence that outdoor experiences cannot change personal traits, and how the "fundamental attribution error" can explain the paradox of a shortage of evidence that adventure education "works" and a widespread belief that it does "work".
Abstract: In the first of a two part series of articles I argued that “character building” in outdoor adventure education (OAE) is a flawed concept. This, the second article, examines the persistence of the idea of character building in OAE in the face of strong evidence that outdoor experiences cannot change personal traits. I examine how the “fundamental attribution error” can explain the paradox of (a) a shortage of evidence that adventure education “works” and (b) a widespread belief that it does “work”. I review the place of character building in research, and develop a critical reading of a representative adventure education text. I show how unchallenged dispositionist assumptions emerge in neo-Hahnian discourse. I explain how discarding the intuitively appealing but fallacious foundations of neo-Hahnism can clear the way for situationist approaches to outdoor education that bring much needed sensitivity to cultural, regional, historical, and social contexts.

110 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, the authors examine informal citizenship training for youth and the historical geographies of education over time through analysing the Scout Movement in Britain and its activities in the first half of the twentieth century.
Abstract: This paper examines informal citizenship training for youth and the historical geographies of education over time through analysing the Scout Movement in Britain and its activities in the first half of the twentieth century. In doing so, it highlights the complexity of youth citizenship and the significance of non-school spaces in civil society to our understandings of young people's positioning as citizen-subjects. Drawing on archival research, I demonstrate how a specific youth citizenship project was constructed and maintained through the Scout Movement. I argue that various processes, strategies and regulations were involved in envisioning 'citizen-scout' and developing both duty-bound, self-regulated individuals as well as a wider collective body of British youth. This analysis speaks to broader debates on citizenship, nationhood and youth, as well as highlighting how the historical geographies of citizenship education are an important area of study for geographers.

101 citations

Dissertation
01 Jan 2014

52 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, the Boy Scouts Movement in the UK was analysed in order to illustrate how an emphasis upon seemingly banal, embodied practices such as dressing, writing and crafting can provide a counter-view to prevailing notions of the elite, organisational "scripting" of individualised, geopolitical identities.
Abstract: This article brings a feminist geopolitics to bear upon an analysis of the Boy Scout Movement in Britain in order to illustrate how an emphasis upon seemingly banal, embodied practices such as dressing, writing and crafting can provide a counter-view to prevailing notions of the elite, organisational ‘scripting’ of individualised, geopolitical identities. Here, these practices undertaken by girls are understood not as subversive, or even transgressive, in the face of broader-scale constructions of the self and the collective body, but rather as related moments in the emergence of a complex, tension-ridden ‘movement’ that exceed specific attempts at fixity along the lines of gender. Using archival data, this article examines various embodied practices by ‘girl scouts’ that were made possible by such attempts at fixity but which also, in turn, opened up new spaces of engagement and negotiation. A cumulative shift from a determinedly masculine to a co-educational organisation over the course of the twentieth...

47 citations