chapter  1
12 Pages

Learning to Labor in New Times: An Introduction

This book grew out of two panels at the 2002 annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association that honored the 25th anniversary of the U.S. publication of Learning to Labor, and the indispensable contribution of Paul Willis to educational research worldwide. Willis’s many contributions during his (still flourishing) career speak to the importance of everyday worlds and lives, and to his commitment to ensuring that youth’s realities-of school, of work, of home, of community, and of media culture-are consistently at the forefront of our agendas for research, and for political change. From the seminal Learning to Labor, to his more recent work on a major policy document, The Youth Review, Willis repeatedly insists that what youth do is important: they function as political actors, and they are not simply dupes of a wholly reproductive class system.