NW 29 - A: Care in Arts-Education Research

NW 29 Research on Arts Education

Care in Arts-Education Research

In relation to the general theme of the conference “Education in an Age of Uncertainty: memory and hope for the future” EERA NW 29 invites to share and reflect on the ways in which care in arts and educational research is contributing to face uncertainty in education, as well as provide insights to elaborate more respectful, inclusive and responsible educational policy measures, practices and conceptions.

The call is especially addressed to promote the organisation of collaborative sessions with the contribution of researchers from various European countries in the form of symposia, research workshops, and round tables on this topic.

The Call
In these troubling times where conflict dominates the news and climate changes keep intensifying before our eyes, there is a need to reflect on what ways the care for oneself or the other - whether it be an opponent, a stranger, or the environment itself-, can help us face the Age of Uncertainty that we seem to be going through.

Care was initially associated with the feminine and the home (Noddings, 1984) which then evolved to education and schools (Noddings, 1992), however, it should be stressed that this vision reinforces binary oppositions derived from a patriarchal view (hooks, 2001) that assumes power and strength as their exclusive virtues.  In this matter Gilligan (1995) brings to the discussion precisely the difference between a feminine ethic of care, and a more relational feminist ethics of care, emphasizing compassion and responsibility towards oneself and the others, pursuing the well-being of the collectivity. Gilligan (1995, p. 122) highlights that “a feminist ethic of care begins with connection, theorized as primary and seen as fundamental in human life. People live in connection with one another; human lives are interwoven in a myriad of subtle and not-so-subtle ways”.

This intimate as much as planetarian interconnectedness (hooks, 2001) must be acknowledged and urgently addressed in order to recognize the four concepts established by Miller (2020) for care ethics, i.e., the need, the vulnerability, the dependency, and the precariousness of our existence as humans.

As hooks (2001, p. 87) advises, “awakening to love can happen only as we let go of our obsession with power and domination”, and that is achieved by realising our interrelations and interdependencies, which relates to Harraway (2016, p. 221) when she argues the need of “making kin sympoietically rather than biogenetically”, by recognizing our responsibility and care about/for others and this planet, not needing to belong to the same category by similarity or genealogy. 

Our aim is to create a critical mass and reflect on the outcomes of working in/about/through care as a political, relational and affective place in arts-education research. To do so, we invite authors to submit their contributions under the following topics:

  • Research projects in which care fosters an ontological, epistemological and/or methodological turn in educational and artistic practices.
  • Research proposals based on care that provide other ways to inhabit art*educational spaces in contexts of uncertainty.
  • Research that challenges art*educational institutions to think about how their curriculum is introducing care in their practices and programs.
  • Proposals based on care in an expanded way (pedagogies of care, relations of care, care-based methods, etc).

In sum, there is an interest to reflect on practices and research that have moved into a position that forces us to rethink and reconfigure principles, methodologies and epistemologies. We call for papers that invite institutions and organizations to think beyond the established, challenging the normative powers that underlie knowledge, and to explore the potentialities and mutual enrichment of care in terms of imagining other realities and possible futures.

Contact Person(s)
Judit Onsès : jonses.edu(at)gmail.com

Bozalek, V., Zembylas, M., & Tronto, J. C. (2020). Posthuman and Political Care Ethics for Reconfiguring Higher Education Pedagogies. Routledge.

Broome, J. L., Bobick, B., Ruggiero, A., & Jesup, C. (2019). Responding to the Challenge to Care: Suggestions for Art Education Curricula. Art Education, 72(2), 36–41. https://doi.org/10.1080/00043125.2019.1559604

Caine, V., Chung, S., Steeves, P., & Clandinin, D. J. (2020). The necessity of a relational ethics alongside Noddings’ ethics of care in narrative inquiry. Qualitative Research, 20(3), 265-276. DOI: 10.1177/1468794119851336

Gilligan, C. (1995). Hearing the Difference: Theorizing Connection. Hypatia, 10(2), 120-127.

Haraway, D. J. (2016). Staying with the trouble : making kin in the Chthulucene. Duke University Press.

hooks, b. (2000). All about love : new visions. Harper Collins Publishers.

Kletchka, D. C. (2023). Our Magnitude and Bond: An Ethics of Care for Art Museum Education. Journal of Social Theory in Art Education, 42, 73–81.

Malone, K., & Young, T. (2023). Making kin: Exploring new philosophical and pedagogical openings in sustainability education in higher education. Educational Philosophy & Theory, 55(11), 1205–1219.https://doi.org/10.1080/00131857.2023.2225768

Miller, S. C. (2020). From vulnerability to precariousness: Examining the moral foundations of care ethics. International Journal of Philosophical Studies, 28(5), 644–661.

Noddings, N. (1984). Caring, a feminine approach to ethics and moral education. University of California Press.

Noddings, N. (1992). The challenge to care in schools: An alternative approach to education. Teachers College Press.

Noddings, N. (2005). The Challenge to Care in Schools: An Alternative Approach to Education (2nd ed.). Teachers College Press.

Tan, M. K. B. (2019). Art and Design Education in the Ecology of Care. International Journal of Art & Design Education, 38(4), 878–886.https://doi.org/10.1111/jade.12273

NW 29 runs a mailing list and invites researchers to join. To join the mailing list, send a blank message to nw29-subscribe(at)lists.eera-ecer.de

Interview with Link Convenor 2019