What might a dissertation look like, if it were also an adventurer's journal? This is an inquiry about neuroatypicality and disability. It is also about role-playing game storyworlds, specifically the well-known fantasy game Dungeons & Dragons (D&D). Role-playing is the medium through which themes of neurotypicality / atypicality, neuroqueering, and learning as collaborative becoming-in-relation are presented and examined. In the pages of this dissertation, I bring together a rush of stories—stories we know, stories we need to know, and stories that are not yet known and still emerging. Through these, the reader is invited to explore the tracings of family, research, gaming, walking, learning, and education storyworlds. With/in layers of stories, I invite exploration and diffraction through a rush of methods: iterative walking- and playing, and emergent cartographic practices, all based in an affirmative, post-qualitative research ethic of relationality, refusal and the oblique, non-representational gaze. Posthumanism, new materiality, relational ontologies, as well as game and monster studies, support a re/imagining of several important concepts that describe, diagnose, pathologize, and intervene in neuroatypical becoming: social-emotional reciprocity, functional speech, gaze direction and eye contact, and repetitive behaviours. As a postsecondary educator, caregiver, and role-player, my goal for this dissertation is to provoke a collaborative re/examination of our relationship with neuroatypicality, and how it shapes educational spaces and practices. I hope the reader will interrogate the ways in which we embody and enact "typicality" as a neutral that pathologizes some ways of being as "atypical," and how that informs and shapes our classrooms and other storyworlds. The reader is encouraged to actively engage with the rush of stories, and to collaboratively question—and re/imagine—teaching and learning practices as storyworlds of becoming-together.
Copyright is held by the author(s).
This thesis may be printed or downloaded for non-commercial research and scholarly purposes.
Supervisor or Senior Supervisor
Thesis advisor: Bingham, Charles
Member of collection