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ERIC Number: EJ1023184
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014-May
Pages: 14
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0309-8249
Towards a Thinking and Practice of Sexual Difference: Putting the Practice of Relationship at the Centre
Wilson, Caroline
Journal of Philosophy of Education, v48 n2 p202-215 May 2014
This article seeks to open up a discussion of issues relating to the significance of sexual difference, the thinking and politics emerging from it and how it might affect educational philosophy. It briefly examines the initial work of Luce Irigaray, which has become quite influential in parts of the English speaking world, particularly focussing on the idea that there are implications for our educational objectives if gender equality were to be put in question as one of the underlying paradigms with which to measure children's performance. It then looks at the work of some groups of Italian philosophers and educationalists who have not been translated into English and are consequently less well known. Their work has been devoted to exploring Irigaray's challenge to re-think the world from the perspective of sexual difference. In particular, in tune with the theme of this special issue, this article shows how this work puts forward the practice and philosophy of relationship for consideration at different stages of the educational process, focussing particularly on Luisa Muraro's philosophical "invention" of the symbolic order of the mother as a way to bring into the shared world the erased sexual difference that Irigaray had articulated. Muraro's work considers the meaning of the first relationship between mother and infant and suggests that the mother, or the one doing her work, is in fact the first and ongoing educator and transmitter of philosophy, a fact that is only partially recognised in our formal educational structures. The article introduces, finally, the idea that as the historical patterns of mainly women teaching younger children and men teaching older children are shifting, to understand the need for and argue for a more sexuate world, with both sexes participating in the educational process at all stages would allow for the possibility of a new discussion of concepts that are already central to educationalists such as equality, freedom, autonomy, authority, flourishing and the relationship with parents.
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Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative; Journal Articles
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A