Social forces and opportunity structures
DOI link for Social forces and opportunity structures
Social forces and opportunity structures book
Chapter 2 analyzes the social forces that drive structuration and barriers in global learning. The roles of families, peers, teachers, neighborhoods, cities and workplaces are examined across student narratives. The chapter outlines how human agency is formed amid the increasing diversity of socio-economic, cultural, educational and religious backgrounds of learners. As student mobility conflates the influences of human and institutional agencies, questions emerge about the choices made by individuals with regard to the usefulness of what they learn. In the construct of learning spaces and opportunities for cross-cultural education, there appears to be a range of academic barriers that individual learners find difficult to remove or ignore. Breaking boundaries is often the decisive solution implemented by learners with authoritative and inspiring influencers. When such people are absent or unavailable in families or peer circles, students take a much longer road to understanding how acts of defiance and creative destruction work and when it makes sense to engage them. Breaking away with convention is often necessary to open the way toward boundary-crossing learning and enhanced opportunities for self-discovery, transformation, and social mobility.