Developing Alternative Educational Visions
2017 - 218 pages
ISBN Paperback: 9789463008525 ($ 54.00)
Subject: Educational Theory
Number 11 of the series: Studies in Professional Life and WorkFree Preview Negotiating Neoliberalism
"An unashamedly polemic book, who’s perspective can help all of us, regardless of our own position, to reflect on, re-examine, and understand education systems globally, and our opportunities to influence their future .... The editors offer us a framework for educational research of Five Rs - remembering, regression, reconceptualization, refraction, and renewal - but ask us also to look for instances of resistance (their italics)." -- John Galloway on the Mirandanet network
"This material is valuable ... especially for academics and dedicated higher education students." -- Personalized Education Now
Following the financial crises in 2007, we have seen the intensification of neoliberal policies in education, with radical and potentially irrevocable shifts in the educational landscape, promoted under the auspices of ‘austerity’. This book highlights the central features of neoliberal education policies, their origins, recent developments and also their inherent weaknesses and flaws. It provides insights into the day to day realities and negative impacts of recent policies on the professional practice and work of educators, demonstrating how the changing conditions have led to de-professionalisation, alienation and a loss of professional autonomy and identity. The book also provides a set of accounts that detail the new realities emerging as a result of ‘austerity’ policies and questions the degree to which austerity has actually been developed as an ideological ‘cover story’ for the further monetisation and privatisation of public services.
The various chapters challenge the common assumption that the neoliberal project is a monolithic orthodoxy by highlighting its complexities, variations and contradictions in the ways policies are refracted through action and practice in different contexts. The book also challenges the common assumption that there are no viable alternatives to neoliberal education policies, and does so by presenting a range of different examples, theoretical perspectives, discourses and alternative practices. It is argued that such alternatives not only highlight the range of different approaches, choices and possibilities but also provide the seedbed for a reimagined educational future.
The authors offer a range of conceptual and theoretical insights and analyses that highlight the weaknesses and limitations inherent within the neoliberal education project and also illustrate the dangers in following the prevailing hegemonic discourse and trajectories. It is postulated that alternative educational approaches warrant greater and urgent attention because history suggests that rather than having weathered the recent economic crisis, we may well be witnessing the long tail of decline for the neoliberal project.
This book will be useful for educators, researchers, students and policy makers interested in the detrimental effects of neoliberal education, the range of viable alternatives, and the routes to resistance and ways of reimagining alternative educational futures.