Activist dispositions for social justice in advantaged and disadvantaged contexts of schooling

Mills, C. , Gale, T. , Parker, S. , Smith, C. and Cross, R. (2019) Activist dispositions for social justice in advantaged and disadvantaged contexts of schooling. British Journal of Sociology of Education, 40(5), pp. 614-630. (doi: 10.1080/01425692.2019.1582322)

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Abstract

This article advances current conceptions of teacher activism through an exploration of the social justice dispositions of teachers in advantaged and disadvantaged contexts of schooling. We interrogate the practices of teachers in a government school, with a high proportion of refugee students and students from low socio-economic backgrounds, in a high-fees, multi-campus independent school, and in a disadvantaged Systemic Catholic school to illustrate how Bourdieu’s notion of dispositions (which are constitutive of the habitus) and Fraser’s distinction between affirmative and transformative justice are together productive of four types of teacher activism. Specifically, we show that activist dispositions can be characterised as either affirmative or transformative in stance and as either internally or externally focused in relation to the education field. We argue that the social, cultural and material conditions of schools are linked to teachers’ activist dispositions and conclude with the challenge for redressing educational inequalities by fostering a transformative activism in teachers’ practices.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:Australian Research Council financial supported the project [DP130101297 Social Justice Dispositions Informing Teachers’ Pedagogy].
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Gale, Professor Trevor and Parker, Stephen
Authors: Mills, C., Gale, T., Parker, S., Smith, C., and Cross, R.
Subjects:H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
L Education > L Education (General)
L Education > LB Theory and practice of education
L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB1603 Secondary Education. High schools
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Education
Journal Name:British Journal of Sociology of Education
Publisher:Taylor & Francis
ISSN:0142-5692
ISSN (Online):1465-3346
Published Online:11 March 2019
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2019 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor and Francis Group
First Published:First published in British Journal of Sociology of Education 40(5):614-630
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the publisher copyright policy

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