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Another leading USA Gov 2.0 observer, Andrea DiMaio in her end of year blog A Year in Review: Top Ten for Government 2.0 in 2009 identifies some of the other key Gov 2.0 developments which will help shape the future of online collaborative policy research in 2010 and beyond.
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"I met her online." He's standing in the southeast corner of the dining room, at the farthest point from the guest room. He rests his temples against the two walls. Like a dunce, which is precisely how he feels. "You think I deserve this."
The Jordanian government cites national security as a reason for refusing to rescind its gender-biased nationality law that forbids women, but not men, from passing their Jordanian citizenships to children they have with foreign spouses. Jordan maintains that changing the law would open paths to citizenship for Palestinians and imperil their "right of return" to a future Palestine. Children of Jordanian women married to foreigners become immigrants, and those of women married to noncitizen Palestinians become stateless. Noncitizen youth and their Jordanian mothers have mobilized the activist movement "My Mother is Jordanian, and her Citizenship is My Right" to contest policies that have made the marital choices of potentially all Jordanian women a matter of national security. In 2015, the leader of this activist network and my key interlocutor died suddenly from cancer. But state narratives about national security and the Jordanian secret police made her family question the circumstances of her cancer. Her stateless children reached out online to ask me whether they should administer a black-market drug in case her death was being orchestrated by government doctors. But if she was dying from cancer, the drug would make her end even more painful. When I suggested that this was a decision for the family, her children insisted that they had "whatsapped" me because I was family. In this paper, I reflect on the challenges and ethics of doing ethnography under surveillance, thinking through 'conspiratorial talk' and uncertainty as a mode of inquiry in and beyond 'the field'.
I felt the full promise the day Meg sat in my office (in the renowned orange chair--which her affection for has redeemed in my eyes, for who could love an orange upholstered chair otherwise?), and reported back to me what she had seen and heard at the NCTE Conference in Milwaukee in 2000. "You know, a lot of the things you are talking about in class . . . other people are talking about them." This "you're-not-a-freak" message is very gratifying for teachers and parents whenever they can get it, but Meg was already looking beyond, to the larger rhetorical problem of how to communicate to her peers the mountaintop experience of the conference. Realizing the necessary indirection required here, Meg instead started thinking about the design of the Teaching of Writing class, and the opportunities presented by some of the technologies used in the class--the MOO in particular, which was something I had just kind of "thrown into" her class as a tool that's out there that students should know about. Meg had a vision of a "Virtual Writer's Room," a use of the MOO for having TW students provide both synchronous online tutoring of high school students in the MOO, as well as a-synchronous posting of drafts and comments in a bulletin board accessible through the MOO's enCore Xpress interface.
So we went into our second year of work together, the post-conference year, and the Teaching of Writing class took on Meg's stamp (albeit atop the basic traditional structure I had given the class). Everything was comfortable and exciting. Students were using the MOO for online clinical experiences, groups of students were taking the initiative to form groups, assign themselves projects, meet, MOO, read and write--all with enthusiasm and self-directed joy. Meg was behind much of this, I know, if only by her compelling ethos and sensible approach. She gave one group in particular the idea for forming the "Best Book Club Ever" which met and MOOed regularly on Young Adult fiction, as described by Carol Medrano in her Webfolio. Meg was teaching mini-lessons, she was workshopping with individuals, she was conferring with groups, and she was providing context to all class discussions, in the most delicate, suave kind of balance. It was my happiest experience as a teacher having Meg take leadership in the class, because our movements, to my mind, were so synchronized, and there was no need in me for any kind of assertion in the way of taking control. My assertion motive was guided wholly by the connections I perceived--the need to assert the theories and course issues, educational realities, and so on, as they spontaneously made themselves available to my mind, and through that to the class. In all, it was the best stuff of teaching and learning. Meg may, of course, disagree about the extent of her control and ownership over the class, since it was still my class, with my syllabus and design. But in my experience, I felt it had become her class, in a way that was so beneficial to the students and to me (if not necessarily to her in her sense of autonomy and total pedagogical vision). 041b061a72