This article engages the current challenges that the ecology of designing and implementing ethnographic research today presents to the still powerful culture of method in anthropology, especially as it is manifested in the production of apprentice graduate dissertation research by anthropologists in the making. The Anthropology of Public Policy defines a recent and emerging terrain of anthropological research that challenges the culture of fieldwork/ethnographic method at the core of anthropology's practice and identity. Thus, what might emerge, in the author's view, is not a new or adjusted handbook of method, but a more far-reaching discussion of how the very function of ethnographic research shifts in response to this challenge in terms of collaboration and pedagogy.
How can we as educators address complex and controversial topics in the social sciences without encouraging simplistic responses and self-reproducing binary oppositions? Drawing upon an ethnographic analysis of a first-year writing seminar on the history of the Chinese Cultural Revolution, this article proposes novel approaches to overcome instinctive reactions to contentious topics. Arguing that the experience of controversy produces self-reinforcing binary oppositions that become autopoetically abstracted from the actual topic of discussion, I build upon specific seminar experiences to propose two novel and practical concepts for the pedagogy of controversy: (1) deidentification, which refers to a process of disengagement from the binaries and thus identities that structure and reproduce controversy, and (2) humanisation, which refers to a process of moving beyond abstractions to reidentify with the fundamentally human experience of contentious historical moments. The pedagogy of controversy, I argue, must teach against our conventional identificatory responses to controversy to promote a more nuanced understanding of inherently complex issues.
The communicative relationship between learners and teachers in higher education, particularly as manifested in assessment and feedback, is often problematic. I begin from an Academic Literacies approach that positions academic literacy as requiring learners to acquire a complex set of literacy skills and abilities within specific discursive and institutional contexts. Whilst acknowledging the institutional dimension of academic literacy, I argue that the Academic Literacies approach tends to underestimate its significance. This shortcoming can be addressed by considering student speaking and writing as powerfully constrained by what Bourdieu refers to as the authority of pedagogic institutions, which function in what Sennett calls the culture of the new capitalism. Synthesising Bourdieu and Sennett, I argue, opens up possibilities for creating a pedagogy for itself: a pedagogy conscious of its reproductive function but able to provide both learners and teachers with what Canaan terms critical hope. Through this theoretical synthesis I seek to re-craft the Academic Literacies approach to pedagogic communication so that our understanding of the problems experienced by learners in acquiring academic literacy can be enhanced.
Instructional Practice through Feminist Pedagogical Media Literacy
In this article I discuss a theoretical intervention—feminist pedagogical media literacy (FPML)—that has practical application. I argue for the advancement of this multi-faceted media and new literacies form as a mode of empowerment for girls and young women. Using examples from feminist theoretical scholarship; DIY media and other new literacies frames; classroom examples and anecdotes; and educational perspectives on curriculum and policy, I advocate for a feminist pedagogical media literacy that enables critique and/or action stances.
Power and Politics in Turkey's Bid for EU Membership
From 1989, new plans to enlarge the EU caused growing public disenchantment with the future of European integration as a viable model of cooperation among states and peoples in Europe. To manage disenchantment, EU actors designed various policy tools and techniques in their approaches to European peripheries such as Turkey. Among these, they intensified and perfected processes of pedagogy where EU actors assume that they have unique knowledge of what it means to be 'European' and that they must teach accession candidates how to become true Europeans. Based on accounts of EU politicians and officials, past experiences of government officials from former EU candidate states and Turkish officials' encounters with the EU's accession pedagogy, this article explores the EU's enlargement policy as a pedagogical engagement and the responses it elicits among Turkish governmental representatives, in order to test the reconfigurations of power between Europe and the countries on its margins.
David P. Thomas
This article explores the use of critical pedagogy in addressing the important issue of Socially Responsible Investing (SRI) in the postsecondary context. I argue that tools of critical pedagogy – in this case student-centred learning and sharing power in the classroom – provide a productive avenue for post-secondary students to engage with SRI. In addition, analysing current debates and trends in SRI offers an excellent opportunity to encourage active, engaged, student-centred learning, with the ultimate goal of producing citizens who are capable of questioning the world around them. The article presents a case study of a course on SRI at a small liberal arts university in Canada to illustrate the potential of critically teaching and learning about SRI.
The sexualization of the female body in contemporary media has created considerable anxiety about its impact on girls. Much of the resulting research focuses on the influence of visual media on body image and the flow-on effects for girls' health. Rather less attention is paid to the pedagogical role of popular romance fiction in teaching girls about their sexuality. Given the pronounced increase in eroticized fiction for girls over the past decade, this is a significant oversight. This article applies Hakim's (2010) concept of erotic capital to two chick lit novels for girls. The elements of erotic capital—assets additional to economic, cultural and social capital—are used to explore the lessons these novels teach about girl sexual subjectivities and sociality in a sexualized culture.
Rethinking Éducation, Instruction, and the Political Pedagogy of the French Revolution
This article examines the political pedagogy of the French Revolution and, with that, the revolutionaries' engagement with issues of political community and communication. It proposes that while the distinction between éducation and instruction, or between the development of moral and civic character, on the one hand, and the cultivation of particular skills, on the other, was prominent in eighteenth-century pedagogy and has been influential in our understanding of the Revolution, that same distinction has obscured essential elements of the revolutionaries' pedagogical and political agendas. Attention to the proposals and practices of revolutionary pedagogy, including the revolutionary festivals, reveals that what the revolutionaries called “public instruction” was a dynamic synthesis of civic and technical training, a synthesis that was intended not to foster unquestioning obedience or the obliteration of differences among citizens, but to promote civic communication in ways that would make a participatory politics possible.
Free universities are diverse but loosely networked projects that resist repressive capitalist and state configurations of power by re-imagining teaching, learning and research on their own terms, often through radical and ongoing experimentation. Drawing from my own experiences as a co-founder and organiser of the Brisbane Free University, along with research I conducted with around twenty-five different free universities across the U.S.A., Canada and Mexico, I focus in this article on activists’ attempts to develop emancipatory countercapitalist pedagogies. Using Harney and Moten’s (2013) notion of the tension between ‘study’ and ‘education’, with the former connoting a vast realm of possibilities for learning and the latter pointing to the presence of pre-defined end-points, I ask: when does activists’ prefigurative work orbit around explicitly counter-capitalist end-points to learning (against capitalism), and when do they attempt to abandon end-points altogether, in favour of ‘radically open’ forms of ‘learning for its own sake’ (beyond capitalism)?
The role of the school among youth in Nelemnoe (Yakutia)
This article discusses the introduction of 'ethnic subjects' to the Yukaghir national school in Nelemnoe in the late 1980s and early 1990s. School activities aim at 'reviving' traditional culture, language, customs, etc. However, even though children have been taught their native language for more than 10 years, none of them is able to use it in everyday life. What is the influence of 'traditional handcraft' or 'regional knowledge' on Nelemnoe youngsters and their identity? Will ethno-pedagogy help them to preserve and develop their culture? How are local teachers adapting traditional culture to what they perceive as young people's needs? By answering these and other questions, the author tries to uncover the role of school in small communities in Siberia. Beyond the family, the social life of teenagers is mainly connected with the school, thus we may assume that the school is one of the most important factors shaping the futures of young people.