Monday, December 07, 2015

Mud Masons of Djenne - ethnographical study of apprenticeship and workplace learning

The Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History is curating a series of video interviews of with the masons of Djenne . The video interviews (in French) are with the 'master' masons, present practitioners and apprentices. Viewing the videos bring to life the work of Professor Trevor Marchand and the descriptions and scholarship from his books 'Minaret building and apprenticeship in Yemen (2001) with a supportive review and 'The Masons of Djenne (2009)' and an overview paper.

The videos are short but provide a window into the world of the learning of a pre-text based craft. Mimetic learning is the norm with apprentices learning 'by stealth' and gradual belonging into the community of masons. Worth a look through for background into studies of learning through practice.

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