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ERIC Number: EJ795124
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2006
Pages: 10
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 13
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-1528-3534
Early Childhood Institutions as Loci of Ethical and Political Practice
Moss, Peter
International Journal of Educational Policy, Research, and Practice: Reconceptualizing Childhood Studies, v7 n1 p127-136 2006
The historical process of the institutionalisation of childhood is in a period of intensification, as children enter institutions at ever earlier ages and remain in them for longer periods. This intensification presents great opportunities but also involves many risks since everything is dangerous. A particular set of risks are produced from the increasing dominance of a particular discourse about early childhood. The dominant discourse threatens everyone with what is referred to as "hegemonic globalisation", that is the successful globalisation of a particular local and culturally-specific discourse to the point that it makes universal truth claims and "localises" all rival discourses. The author begins this paper by arguing that there is an increasingly dominant Anglo-American discourse in early childhood. The dominance of this discourse is not accidental. It is the product of economic, cultural, and political forces that exert power in much of the world today--not least the long-established and immensely influential paradigm of modernity and the resurgence since the mid-1970s of neo-liberal capitalism and advanced liberal politics. At a time of growing insecurity, complexity and uncertainty, generated by these forms of liberalism, it claims to offer certainty and redemption. It is propagated through the influence of American research, the reach of the English language and the advocacy of international organisations. Those who wish to contest the discourse and transgress its norms need to dialogue more about how this might be done. There is, according to this discourse, just one way of knowing, thinking, and practicing, the supreme task being to define and follow a particular way. The author concludes by offering some thoughts as a contribution to a dialogue about how an effective resistance might be mounted to the dominant discourse, perhaps beginning by interrupting its fluency, making the discourse stutter.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Early Childhood Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A