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On the need to repoliticise environmental and sustainability education: rethinking the post-political consensus
Örebro University, School of Humanities, Education and Social Sciences. (SMED)
Örebro University, School of Humanities, Education and Social Sciences. (SMED)
2014 (English)In: Environmental Education Research, ISSN 1350-4622, E-ISSN 1469-5871, Vol. 20, no 5, p. 639-659Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This article draws attention to the possibilities of the ongoing philosophical discussion about cosmopolitan universal values in relation to the normative challenges in environmental and sustainability education (ESE). The purpose of this paper is to clarify the philosophical problems of addressing universally sustainable responsibilities and values in ESE. Our arguments draw inspiration from the work of three poststructuralist scholars: we explore how Butler develops her claim that universal assertion requires a cultural translation, how Mouffe exposes the political in universal claim and how Todd argues that education needs to introduce students to a political language that enables them to critically reflect on their own and other groups’ values and actions. In the concluding part, we suggest the following guidelines for rethinking ESE: unmasking the political dimension, re-politicising education, seeing beyond the relativist and objectivist divide and using passion as a moving force.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Routledge, 2014. Vol. 20, no 5, p. 639-659
Keywords [en]
environmental and sustainability education, cosmopolitanism, pluralism, political, normativity, universal values
National Category
Social Sciences Pedagogy
Research subject
Education
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-32243DOI: 10.1080/13504622.2013.833585ISI: 000342804400003Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-84884186048OAI: oai:DiVA.org:oru-32243DiVA, id: diva2:662040
Available from: 2013-11-05 Created: 2013-11-05 Last updated: 2017-12-06Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Om global etik i miljö- och hållbarhetsutbildningens policy och praktik
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Om global etik i miljö- och hållbarhetsutbildningens policy och praktik
2014 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This thesis takes its point of departure in the change of emphasis in the field of environmental and sustainability education (ESE) towards the inclusion of social and human development issues. The theoretical frames of the thesis are poststructural and postcolonial theories, from which different writings, central concepts and approaches are drawn. The thesis also builds on a pragmatist and anti-essentialist approach which argues that we socially construct the meaning of right and wrong and what works better in our lives on the current problematic or situation. The results are presented in four studies and the thesis has three purposes. The first purpose is to describe and investigate theoretical perspectives that take a critical stand on and offer alternatives to universal and consensus-oriented approaches. This purpose is the central focus in the first and second studies. The first study examines the re-emergence of classical cosmopolitanism and contemporary views of the perspective with the intent of discussing its potential for the development of education for sustainable development (ESD). The second study aims to clarify the philosophical problem of addressing universally sustainable responsibilities and values in environmental and sustainability education. The second purpose is to investigate teachers’ ethical reflections in a first-hand intercultural experience. This purpose is dealt with in the third study, where seven Swedish upper secondary school teachers facing particular conflicts of interest and moral situations during a study visit to Central America are interviewed. The third purpose is to investigate how teachers deal with the complex issues of intragenerational equity or social justice in their teaching. This is dealt with in the fourth study, which explores how teachers integrate issues of social justice into their teaching of global sustainability. My hope is that this thesis will contribute to the discussion about how teachers can develop a conscious and critically informed approach to the teaching of environmental and sustainability issues and also contribute to theoretical and philosophical discussions about universalism, normativity and global ethics within environmental and sustainability education research.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Örebro: Örebro university, 2014. p. 98
Series
Örebro Studies in Education, ISSN 1404-9570 ; 48
Keywords
environmental and sustainability education, education for sustainable development, global ethics, morals, social justice, poststructural and postcolonial theories, pragmatism
National Category
Pedagogy
Research subject
Education
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-37897 (URN)978-91-7529-051-5 (ISBN)
Public defence
2014-12-12, Prismahuset, Hörsal 2, Örebro universitet, Fakultetsgatan 1, Örebro, 13:15 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2014-10-21 Created: 2014-10-21 Last updated: 2017-10-17Bibliographically approved

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Sund, LouiseÖhman, Johan

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