Park Presents on Autobiographical Writing

Posted on 4/23/2018 9:32:00 AM

Gloria Park (English Department) was invited to speak at the University of Trento in Italy on "Autobiographical Writing in English Language Teaching and Teacher Education" for the Narrative Approaches to English Language Teaching Seminar on April 13, 2018.

All our writing is influenced by our life histories. Each word we write represents an encounter, possibly a struggle, between our multiple past experience and the demands of a new context. Writing is not some neutral activity which we just learn like a physical skill, but it implicates every fiber of the writer’s multifaceted being.
—(Ivanic, 1998, p. 181)

The above excerpt is at the core of Park's work in narrative as well as other evocative genre inquiries, specifically in autobiographical writing in English language teaching and teacher education. She situates writing and literacies as socially, culturally, and politically embodied practices. Thus, engaging in (auto)biographical inquiry has allowed her to reflect on her own evolution in understanding the importance of writing in constructing her identity as a language teacher, teacher educator, and researcher (educator). In many ways, promoting these evocative genres of writing can help individuals explore their local knowledge and local contexts as a form of decolonizing methodological approaches (Denzin & Gonzalez, 2001) as well as critically reflective pedagogical practices in classroom spaces (Park, 2008, 2010; Carroll, Motha, & Price, 2008), thus connecting writing and identity (Ivanic, 1998; Park, 2010, 2011, 2013).

This talk focused on pedagogical approaches grounded in teacher education domains; and Park provided selected references as well as pedagogical tasks and tips.

For those interested in the presentation slides, please e-mail Professor Park at

Department of English