Electronic Theses and Dissertations



Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education


Higher & Adult Education

Committee Chair

Wendy Griswold

Committee Member

Alison Happel-Parkins

Committee Member

Nancy Gallavan

Committee Member

Edith Gnanadass


Throughout my life, grief’s torrents have run undercurrent to my personal and professional journey. It has taken my arrival to mid-life, decades of professional and life experiences as well as higher education for this awareness to flow. I have been grieving for my lost self as woman; my shattered voice as a teacher; and the freedom to choose as a daughter of this nation. Utilizing a Marxist feminist lens, I will examine how patriarchal loss and capitalistic constructs rooted in an undeveloped class consciousness have perpetuated my own sense of powerlessness, detachment, and compulsivity, reifying my indoctrination into the teaching profession (Apple, 1988, 2019; Gilligan & Snider, 2018; Seeman, 1959). Coming into this awareness has been the work of discernment whereas healing has been the result of grief work (Boyd & Myers, 1988). This dissertation is an examination my of lived experiences with disenfranchised grief and subsequent transformational learning within my personal, professional, and pedagogical intersectionality. Storying my way within these concentric spheres through autoethnography, a healing methodology, I will examine dialectically how my positionality intersect with my profession and pedagogy, perpetuating grief while promoting healing (Chang, 2008; Ellis et al., 2011; Pennebaker & Evans, 2014; Pennebaker & Smyth, 2016; Poulos, 2021). To shed light on disenfranchisement within any context, voices from the culture itself must rise up; silences must rupture (Adams et al., 2014). Stories must be shared to shed light on the struggles, and they must be accessible to reach the intended audience— educators from K-12, adult education, and higher education (Adams et al., 2014, Chang, 2008; Holman Jones et al., 2013; Poulos, 2013). It is my hope that by sharing my story, my lived experiences, others will shatter their own silences and heal with me.


Data is provided by the student.

Library Comment

Dissertation or thesis originally submitted to ProQuest.


Open Access