Popular culture, adult learning, and identity development

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

6 Scopus citations


This chapter explores the impact of and the potential for adult learning through engagement with popular culture. Considering that we live in a ‘convergence culture’ (Jenkins in Convergence culture: Where old and new media collide. New York University Press, New York, 2006), where popular cultural products weave across multiple platforms (television, movies, books, websites, social media, etc.) and become major factors in adult lives, it is imperative that the field of adult and lifelong education recognise and understand the learning that happens in these everyday spaces of learning. After an overview of how popular culture operates as an arena of education and a site for adult learning, I review the most recent empirical and theoretical literature within adult education which has focused on adult learning and popular culture and add selected studies from other disciplines that may be significant to the field. I conclude with a discussion of the current and future research trends, focusing on the intersection of popular culture, adult learning/learners, and adult education.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationThe Palgrave International Handbook on Adult and Lifelong Education and Learning
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Number of pages19
ISBN (Electronic)9781137557834
ISBN (Print)9781137557827
StatePublished - Jan 1 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Social Sciences


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