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ERIC Number: EJ783235
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Feb
Pages: 16
Abstractor: Author
Reference Count: 59
ISSN: ISSN-0305-4985
Gifted, Talented and High Ability: Selection for Education in a One-Dimensional World
Tomlinson, Sally
Oxford Review of Education, v34 n1 p59-74 Feb 2008
This article attempts to explain why it is that in England, despite twentieth-century moves towards egalitarianism in education, the selection and segregation of those regarded as being gifted, talented, or of higher ability in better resourced schools and programmes is now increasingly acceptable. Explanations for moves away from attempts to offer a common curriculum in equally well-resourced comprehensive schools centre round the hegemonic view that in a world of global economic competitiveness, national economies need to nurture high levels of knowledge and skills. Unsurprisingly, selective policies benefit the upper socio-economic groups with some concessions made to selecting out the able poor. The latest set of selective policies adopted by the English government centre round programmes for the 'Gifted and Talented'. The article uses work from the Frankfurt school of critical theorists, notably Herbert Marcuse's notion of 'One-Dimensional Man' to suggest that there is an irrational one-dimensional view of the world economy which leads to a competitive scramble to acquire elite qualifications, abandoning notions of equality and meritocracy, and deploying ruthless strategies which require economic, cultural and social capital. Parents and students in this one-dimensional world are subject to a permanent oppressive educational competition. The article concludes that many middle-class parents may come to feel dispossessed as promises held out for education and employment fail to materialise, and success in a competitive global economy proves to be a one-dimensional mirage.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom (England)