Philip Woods

  • This is an open access title available under the terms of a CC BY-NC-ND 3.0 International licence. It is free to read at Oxford Scholarship Online and offered as a free PDF download from OUP and selected open access locations. This monograph uses a medieval Arabic chronicle, the Chronicle of Seert, as a window into the Christian history of Iraq. The Chronicle describes events that are unknown from other sources, but it is most useful for what it tells us about the changing agendas of those who wrote history and their audiences in the period c.400-800.By splitting the Chronicle into its constituent layers, Philip Wood presents a rich cultural history of Iraq. He examines the Christians self-presentation as a church of the martyrs and the uncomfortable reality of close engagement with the Sasanian state. The history of the past was used as a source of solidarity in the present, to draw together disparate Christian communities. But it also represented a means of criticising figures in the present, whether these be secular rulersor over-mighty bishops and abbots.The Chronicle gives us an insight into the development of an international awareness within the church in Iraq. Christians increasingly raised their horizons to the Roman Empire in the West, which offered a model of Christian statehood, while also being the source of resented theological innovation or heresy. It also shows us the competing strands of patronage within the church: between laymen and clergy; church and state; centre and periphery. Building on earlier scholarship rooted inthe contemporary Syriac sources, Wood complements that picture with the testimony of this later witness.

  • `This is an important book for anyone who is serious about introducing or sustaining democratic leadership in schools. Busy practitioners will get much from it by going straight to the chapters about how democratic leadership could be made to work`- Kate Myers, Times Educational Supplement

    `I found this an interesting and stimulating book. The book's ideas are a useful counterpoint to some of the daft notions of macho leadership and management being peddled in education and indeed the public sector more widely. Woods' book has the merits that, though radical, it seeks to base its recommendations in the real world and to argue that there are possibilities for change that can bring about real improvements in everyone's experience and outcomes. Matching the rhetoric of democracy with reality - or at least making them closer - might also improve the quality of our political process, and hence increase interest and reduce cynicism about politics, something which surely should be welcomed. Woods' agenda is significant and his book certainly worth reading' - ESCalate

    `Philip Woods productively refocuses our attention, not on heroes and visions but on how we understand and practise within educational institutions in ways that are social and relational. He provides a realistic and yet challenging analysis of democratic leadership in ways that speak to practitioners, policy makers and researchers. We deal everyday with issues of social justice, and Philip Woods shows us how we might think differently about it, and so work for a better system of learning and schooling' - Professor Helen Gunter, School of Education, University of Manchester

    'Not another bunny, but a welcome academic fox' - Kevin Avison, Steiner Waldorf Schools' Fellowship

    'The theory and practice of democracy and democratic leadership have implications for how we understand what ought to be counted as `improving schools'

    In this book the author focuses on the idea of democratic leadership. He examines what is meant by democratic leadership, and what forms it can take, and shows how it is relevant to school education and learning. The author shows how the ideals and theories of democratic leadership can translate into practice, and sets out some of the challenges that democratic leadership poses in the context of contemporary education .

    This book challenges many of the assumptions inherent in educational policy and conventional approaches to leadership. It is about understanding and exploring both the idea of democratic leadership and its practical relevance through examples drawn from practice and research.

    This book is for practitioners and students on professional development and academic courses. It will be essential reading for all policy-makers, academics and others (such as inspectors) who critically examine leadership and management of educational institutions.

    'Every now and then a book is written in the field of leadership that stands out, says something different, is coherent, original and makes us really ponder and think. This is such a book - it will provoke policy-makers, academics, experienced practitioners and advanced students' - Camridge Journal & Education

  • This book takes the idea of distributing leadership in schools to a new level of understanding and practice. The authors address the complexities of leadership by putting forward two essential propositions. The first is the need to understand leadership as the outcome both of people's intentions and the complex flow of interactions in the daily life of schools. The second is the need to integrate values of social justice and democracy into our understanding of leadership. Building on this insight, the authors show how leadership can be truly collaborative. The book also combines practice, theory and research and draws on the authors' international experience.  
    This book is an invaluable resource for reflection and change for everyone who contributes to and studies leadership - senior leaders, teachers, support staff, students and researchers.
     

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