In the spring semester of 2020, Mike Cole participated in a course offered by Kris Gutiérrez at Berkeley billed as an introduction to cultural-historical activity theory (CHAT). The course was attended by roughly 50 scholars from various parts of the US and Europe. A special concern of the participants was to create a dialogue across generations to re-generate the critical foundations of CHAT. At the end of the course it was clear that the conversation it initiated was far from over. The task now is to continue the conversations. This coffee hour is one effort to further that project. The coffee hour group is placing these conversations in the Cultural Praxis Agora as one suggestion for how this new medium might foster useful learning experiences for all. At present participation is focused on those who participated in the course and want to go back to visit issues that came up during the semester. Perhaps, if the practice seems useful, it could be taken up by others in order to mix opportunities for oral communication and the use of video in our ongoing conversations. You can be part of the discussion by making a comment on the discussion of each video in this forum.
I am a doctoral research student. I am applying CHAT is a theoretical framework to explore the regulation of temporary land uses for events by local government authorities in Australia. It is interesting to seek the tensions and contradictions created as public servants try to balance the demands of bureaucracy with the desires of neoliberalism.