International journal of lifelong education vol:15 issue:5 pages:325-340
In this paper the authors criticise the growing tendency to conceive of adult education as a qualification oriented field of practice. Especially with respect to disadvantaged groups in society this orientation could have a stigmatizing effect. Various agents of education consider them as deficient and hence describe their identity in negative terms. Contrary to this, the authors develop a more positive orientation towards identity development and outline a new understanding of adult education. Their approach is inspired by insights developed in an area of cultural studies.