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A Fra Mauro kind of week

Fra Mauro was a cartographer. He lived in the Republic of Venice in the fifteenth century. I found out about him in James Cowan's (1997) A Mapmaker's Dream. In that account, Fra Mauro welcomed visitors from all over the world in his monastery and used their news to develop his map of the world. I loved the idea that he could be in Venice and yet be connected with voyages of discovery and established trade routes. I had a Fra Mauro feeling this week in rural New South Wales. Social media, particularly Twitter, brought me news of adventures elsewhere. Jacquie Tran was on...

Coaching Ideas

Two fragments came together yesterday and sent me off thinking about coaching. The first came in an email message from Jo Gibson. She is writing up her PhD at the moment and we have been discussing narrative forms. In her email, Jo shared a description of a short story as: something glimpsed from the corner of the eye, in passing. An illuminated moment ... a glimpse of truth, about which you have forgotten to ask. When I read that I thought that it was a powerful description of coaches' experiences as they try to extend their practice. I particularly like the "forgotten...

Entangled, Following, Leading

I had the opportunity to visit Long Beach on Thursday. It is an hour's drive from my home in Braidwood, New South Wales. Long Beach is normally deserted when we get there. We have a choice of wherever we would like to be. There are no surf lifesaving flags. There is no surf patrol there. Everyone who visits the beach understands that they have a personal responsibility for their own and others' safety. It is a shallow, family friendly beach with no dangerous rip currents. We were one of two families on the beach. Both of us were inducting young children...

Jo Gibson: Leadership Followership

I am delighted that my role at the University of Canberra makes it possible for me to supervise research students. One of the students I am working with is Jo Gibson. Jo presented her PhD Confirmation Seminar today. The title was intriguing: Leadership followership: A storied process study of entanglement and nursing practice. These are the slides Jo used to frame her seminar and stimulate questions 140827 Jo Gibson CS. Jo's research aims to challenge what we know about how leadership and followership occurs in nursing practice. It will draw upon a range of qualitative theoretical and methodological insights to investigate the dynamic relationship...

Presenting and Retracting

In conversation with Jo Gibson today, I learned about a recent episode of This American Life. Jo and I were talking about eyewitness testimony, memory and history. She had listened to Ira Glass's conversation with Mike Daisey and she talked about a story aired by This American Life. The transcript of the recent program starts with this statement: I'm coming to you today to say something that I've never had to say on our program. Two months ago, we broadcast a story that we've come to believe is not true. It's a story that got a lot of attention. More people downloaded it than...

First Person … Singular and Plural

I have been listening in awe to Brenda Walker on Radio National's First Person program. First Person is a: ... serialised reading of a published autobiography, broadcast every weekday. We aim to broadcast the best of current and classic personal narratives - including memoirs, travel writing, diaries and letters. We choose books for fine writing that communicates the author's individual life experience, and for their personal voice - the "I" or first person pronoun. Brenda has been reading her Reading by Moonlight: How Books Saved a Life (2010). Penguin Books note that: The first time Brenda Walker packed her bag to go into...