Intergenerational learning in a changing world. Knitting generations together
Keywords:knitting, intergenerational learning, lifelong learning, culture, gender, case study
In intergenerational projects, learning a craft is an activity that may be of interest to people of different ages. This paper focuses on knitting as a craft. In most Western societies, knitting is often considered a craft for women, but on Taquile Island, Peru, it is the men who knit. This paper discusses knitting from an intergenerational perspective whilst focusing on gender and culture. To this aim, we introduce an intrinsic case study to examine the role of gender and culture in intergenerational learning. The data used in this study was collected during a visit to Taquile Island. In summary, the study’s findings reveal that (i) on Taquile, members of the community invest in maintaining cultural traditions in opposition to being swept along by (con)temporary social changes; (ii) knitting on Taquile is approached as a practical technique in contrast to Western culture where knitting is connected to the concept of ‘well-being’; and (iii) whilst gender structures may set frames for performance, the Taquile case demonstrates that what is typically considered ‘male’ or ‘female’ may vary.
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