London Branch Seminar
All are welcome. The paper is attached.
Whilst the academic community talks about children’s agency, participation and ‘voice’, contemporary education has become progressively more authoritarian, disciplinarian and transmissive. Rather than conceive of this divergence as a simple clash of educational values along the lines of a progressive/traditional binary, I want to consider the possibility that there has been a fundamental misstep in the way we have come to think of children’s agency. I will venture the introduction of Georges Bataille, an unfamiliar voice in childhood studies, to explore alternative conceptions of agency, through exploration of the concepts of taboo, transgression and sovereignty.
Sharon Hunter is a lecturer in the School of Education at the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow. She is interested in the concept of child in relation to modernity and counter-modern thought in the first half of the 20th Century, with the intention of gaining a different view of the contemporary educational problematic. She has written on the Frankfurt School, Surrealism and queer theory. A slight detour has taken her to the rich and varied writings of Georges Bataille, where she intends to linger for as long as the forces of neoliberal performativity allow.