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Class in Neoliberal Education Discourse (CLED)

As in many other nations, the Swedish education system is permeated by the discourse of the market economy. Competition between schools in terms of attracting pupils and presenting high average grades is regarded as the primary means to improve schools and education in general. The discourse of the market economy and the norm of competition are also seen in the process of individualisation, and publically funded free schools. Several studies point to how this process has widened social gaps and reinforced social segregation.

Two important research questions are: What happens with the ongoing materialisation of class and with the ideology of education in the neoliberal hegemony? The main aim of the project is to seek knowledge about the consequences of neoliberal discourses for the possibilities of subverting socio-economic inequalities in education. It is a study of how neoliberal discourses appear, become stabilised and are counteracted in texts from public authorities, in media debates and at education conferences.

This research connects to previous research on class and education, to research about how neoliberal discourses have colonised the school and education, and to discussions in the philosophy of education. The project aims at the development of theoretical perspectives on the construction of class in educational discourses.

Project leader: Eva Reimers, Linköping University
Participant researcher at Cultural Sciences: Lena Martinsson
Project duration: 2011–2013
Funding: The Swedish Research Council and the Faculty of Arts

Contact Information

Lena Martinsson

PO Box 200, 405 30 Gothenburg, Sweden

Visiting Address:
Renströmsgatan 6 , 41255 Göteborg

+46-(0)31-786 5910

Page Manager: Felicia Bigot Klinteberg|Last update: 5/4/2016

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