Context and Development of Transformation Theory in the European Field of Adult Education

  • Ted FlemingEmail author
  • Alexis Kokkos
  • Fergal Finnegan


This chapter explores the main ideas of Mezirow’s theory of transformative learning and follows key directions in the further development of his ideas. We will also explore the reception and development of these ideas in Europe. We follow the journey of Transformation Theory to Europe and situate it in the field of adult education. The European adaptation of Mezirow is a fascinating example of “traveling theory” which can be traced back to the structure and dynamics of the field of adult education. We concentrate on some of the convergences and divergences of the theory as it establishes its transatlantic impact. Finally, this will allow us to identify emerging European foci and theoretical priorities of the European perspective which are explored in further detail throughout the book.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Teachers College, Columbia UniversityNew YorkUSA
  2. 2.Hellenic Open UniversityAthensGreece
  3. 3.The Department of Adult and Community EducationMaynooth UniversityMaynoothIreland

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