Passionate attachments: Higher education, policy, knowledge, emotion and social justice

Hey, Valerie and Leathwood, Carole (2009) Passionate attachments: Higher education, policy, knowledge, emotion and social justice. Higher Education Policy, 22 (1). pp. 101-118. ISSN 0952-8733

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We explore the significance of the 'affective turn' in respect to higher education policy in the UK. This turn centres on creating new subjects of attention for the 'employable' student and the 'non-traditional' student, the latter defined as students from backgrounds with no earlier history of higher education (working class or black students for example). The 'affective turn' has been associated with intellectual debates creating a form of knowledge claiming that there has been a permeation of the social and the psychic in contemporary social relations. This new intellectual move focusing on desire/affects and emotion can be seen as relevant for thinking about policy sociology and we argue for the potential of using a psycho-social methodology to tease out how the affective of policy, and its translation into the academy, works. This stance provides an alternative reading of contemporary social orders, from the one adopted in an influential anti-emotion, anti-psychoanalysis discourse (see Furedi, 2003; Ecclestone and Hayes, 2008). On the contrary, we wish to describe and document affects as one of the most important of the 'disqualified discourses' (Morley and David, 2007) of policy sociology so as to rejuvenate the academy's role in working towards rather than against social justice.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: affects, desire, emotion, gender, HE policy
Schools and Departments: School of Education and Social Work > Education
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Depositing User: Valerie Hey
Date Deposited: 06 Feb 2012 19:41
Last Modified: 19 Jun 2012 17:39
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