Research call attention to picturebooks as a challenging art form that contains complex themes and sophisticated literary qualities. However, previous studies on picturebooks in educational settings have mainly involved young children. Inspired by extant research on the complexity of picturebooks and the growing interest in using complex literary texts in the literature classroom, this study explores interpretive work among a group of lower secondary students (aged 13–14) involving the picturebook Hemma hos Harald Henriksson [Visiting Harald Henriksson] (Brandelius & Dackenberg, 2018). In the analysis, we follow a thinking with theory approach (Jackson & Mazzei, 2012) as we plug in the concepts of undecidability (Johansen, 2018, 2019) and negotiation (Derrida, 2002) to explore how the students negotiate with what they deem undecidable features of the picturebook. The material consists of video recordings of a group of eighth-grade students and their work with the picturebook. The findings show how the students encounter undecidable features, mainly concerning social and political issues, and how these undecidabilities invite the students to negotiate between different interpretive possibilities, rather than settling on one. The study indicates how undecidabilities in a literary text are a central part of a literary education emphasizing negotiation. Consequently, the study contributes to the research field focusing on exploring complex literary texts in the literature classroom by calling attention to the potentials of picturebooks in secondary literary education. It emphasizes the value of upholding undecidabilities in the literature classroom. Encountering complex literary texts allows space to negotiate interpretations, to explore and change positions – in turn, creating space to encounter undecidabilities.
|Julkaisun otsikon käännös||Encountering undecidabilities: Lower secondary students’ interpretive work with the picturebook Hemma hos Harald Henriksson|
|Julkaisu||Acta Didactica Norden|
|Tila||Hyväksytty/In press - 2022|
|OKM-julkaisutyyppi||A1 Julkaistu artikkeli, soviteltu|