Jessica Hemmings

Textile Writer

Can That Be Taught?

Can That Be Taught? Lessons in Tacit Knowledge

This chapter considers the unique demands of craft education through comparisons with other models of education that require a student to acquire tacit knowledge. While this chapter is not auto-ethnographic, it draws on experiences of learning I have unwittingly held separate from my academic thinking while knowing that these experiences inform my understanding of what constitutes learning. It is also inspired by life writing, here in the form of countless conversations that happened in all innocence – not while earnestly undertaking research or thinking of work – but perhaps embodied with greater conviction because they represent knowledge gathered from my lived experience. I look to the literary genre of the memoir for words that occupy the space between auto-ethnography and life writing – voices who have sought to find language to recall their own experiences of tacit knowledge.

forthcoming chapter in A Companion on Contemporary Craft edited by Namita Gupta Wiggers and published by Wiley Blackwell (2021).

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