23 SES 05 C, Discourse and Regulation
Parallel Paper Session
The occurrence of racism in education leads to painful situations in which teachers and students are brought brutally face to face with each other, themselves and their actions. At such moments, it is of great importance how we respond to the world, and what kinds of opportunities we thereby open up and exclude. The problem of racism in education is international and there is no quick fix that easily solves the problem. In this paper I study how one European state, Sweden, try to work whit this problem in policy making. Over the last 40 years there has been a shift in Swedish educational policy, where racism has been seen as a growing problem in schools. Since 2006, educational legislation (SFS 2006:67, SFS 2008:567 and SFS 2008:571) has required schools to draw up local policy document, called equal treatment plans, to counteract violations in education.
In this study I analyse 113 equal treatment plans from Swedish Upper Secondary Schools to see what kind of local policy making, against expressions of racism, follows from the national directives. Two research questions are in focus:
a) What courses of action, in response to expressions of racism, are advocated in equal treatment plans?
b) What consequences have these courses of action for the formation of schools as a moral and political space?
How can we understand the occurrence of racism in education? To answer that question I turn to work of the French sociologist and philosopher Pierre-Andre Taguieff (2001), who identifies two types of racism, referred to here as exclusionary and exploitative racism (cf. Mulinari & Neergaard 2010). Exclusionary racism refers to a hostility that seeks to exclude people on the basis of cultural or racial divisions. Exploitative racism, on the other hand, involves the (re)construction of power relationships that legitimise a hierarchisation of people based on such divisions. Previous studies have revealed the existence of exclusionary racism in Swedish education, and among young people in Sweden (cf. Barnombudsmannen 2008, Forum för levande historia 2010). There are also traces of exploitative racism in schools: when teachers tend to approach students differently depending on their ethnicity, and teaching content can convey ethnocentric beliefs (cf. Kamali 2006, Gruber 2007). The occurrence of racism in education is, however, not a national problem and there is a lot of research that have shown this kind of problem in other countries (cf. Dixson & Rousseau 2005, Gillborn 1995, 2008) Given this problematic situation, it is of great importance to study how educational policies relate to this kinds of problem and how the thereby form schools as a moral and political space.
Barnombudsmannen (2008): Sverige äger! Barn och unga berättar om sitt land. Stockholm: Fritzes. Dewey, John (1893–1894/1971): Teaching ethics in the high school. I John Dewey The Early Works, 1882–1898, Volume 4, Early Essays and The Study of Ethics: A Syllabus, s. 54–61. Carbondale and Edwardsville: Southern Illinois University Press. Dewey, John (1908/1978): Ethics. John Dewey The Middle Works, 1899 – 1924, Volume 5. Carbondale and Edwardsville: Sothern Illinois University Press. Dewey, John (1922/1988): Human Nature and Conduct. John Dewey The Middle Works, 1899 – 1924, Volume 14. Carbondale and Edwardsville: Southern Illinois University Press. Dixson, Adrienne D. & Rousseau Celia K. (2005): And we are still not saved: critical race theory in education ten years later. Race, Ethnicity and Education 8(1), s. 7–27. Forum för levande historia (2010): Den mångtydliga intoleransen – En studie av gymnasieungdomars attityder läsåret 2009/2010. Stockholm: Forum för levande historia. Gillborn, David (1995): Racism and Antiracism in Real Schools. Buckingham, Philadelphia: Open University Press. Gillborn, David (2008): Racism and Education. Coincidence or Conspiracy? London and New York: Routledge. Gruber, Sabine (2007): Skolan gör skillnad. Etnicitet och institutionell praktik. Lindköping: Lindköping Studies in Arts and Science No. 387. Kamali, Masoud (2006): Skolböcker och kognitiv andrafiering. I SOU 2006:40: Utbildningens dilemma. Demokratiska ideal och andrafierande praxis, s. 47–102. Stockholm: Fritzes. Mulinari, Diana & Neergaard, Anders (2010): Sverigedemokraterna och det teoretiska fältet. I Mats Deland, Fredrik Hertzberg & Thomas Hvitfeldt, red: Det vita fältet. Samtida forskning om högerextremism, s. 45–72. Opuscala Historica Upsaliensis 41. SFS 2006: 1083: Förordning om barns och elevers deltagande i arbetet med planer mot diskriminering och kränkande behandling. SFS 2008:567: Diskrimineringslag. SFS 2008:571: Lag om ändring i skollagen (1985:1100). Taguieff, Pierre-André (2001): The Force of Prejudice. On Racism and Its Doubles. Minneapolis & London: University of Minnesota Press
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