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Schooling and the struggle for social change

Education has long been central to the struggle for radical social change. Yet, as social class inequalities sustain and deepen, it is increasingly difficult to conceptualise and understand the possibility for ‘emancipatory’ education. In Radical Childhoods Jessica Gerrard takes up this challenge by theoretically considering how education might contribute to radical social change, alongside an in-depth comparative historical enquiry. Attending to the shifting nature of class, race, and gender relations in British society, this book offers a thoughtful account of two of the most significant community-based schooling initiatives in British history: the Socialist Sunday School (est. 1892) and Black Saturday/Supplementary School (est. 1967) movements. Part I situates Radical Childhoods within contemporary policy and practice contexts, before turning to critical social theory to consider the possibility for ‘emancipatory’ education. Offering detailed analyses of archival material and oral testimony, Parts II and III chronicle the social histories of the Socialist Sunday School and Black Saturday/Supplementary School movements, including their endeavour to create alternative cultures of radical education and their contested relationships to the state and wider socialist and black political movements. Radical Childhoods argues that despite appearing to be on the ‘margins’ of the ‘public sphere’, these schools were important sites of political struggle. In Part IV, Gerrard develops upon Nancy Fraser’s conception of counter-publics to argue for a more reflexive understanding of the role of education in social change, accounting for the shifting boundaries of public struggle, as well as confronting normative (and gendered) notions of ‘what counts’ as political struggle.

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Ashley Lavelle

chapter 7 Overstated radicals The radical and renegade thus may not always be the indivisible species they first appear to be. A closer inspection of the radical’s politics can reveal important continuities through the years, or at least flaws in their politics that could conceivably explain their affinity with conservatism, if not their apostasy. In other cases perhaps the radicalism of the individual in question is simply overstated. Norman Podhoretz, for instance, is regarded as one of American neo-conservatism’s key ideologues (Wald, 1987: 350). Yet he

in The politics of betrayal
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Voiceover, autoethnography, performativity
Ming-Yuen S. Ma

Radical otherness: voiceover, autoethnography, performativity Our voices say something about us. To express ourselves, we speak, yell, cry, whisper, sing, murmur, scream, and otherwise vocalize; usually to someone like ourselves – another human – or to more than one person. Sometimes, we vocalize to other living beings, as well as to machines. In Keywords for Sound, anthropologist Amanda Wiedman identifies two powerful ideas from the Western metaphysical and linguistic traditions about voice: one is voice as an expression of subjecthood, ‘from which springs the

in There is no soundtrack
Suhaiymah Manzoor-Khan

14 IS THIS RADICAL? AM I RADICAL? Suhaiymah Manzoor-Khan This will not be a ‘Muslims are like us’ poem I refuse to be respectable. Instead Love us when we’re lazy, Love us when we’re poor, Love us in our back-to-backs, council estates, depressed, unwashed and weeping, Love us high as kites, unemployed, joy-riding, time-wasting, failing at school, Love us filthy, without the right colour passports, without the right-sounding English, Love us silent, unapologizing, shopping in Poundland, skiving off school, homeless, unsure, sometimes violent, Love us when we aren

in I Refuse to Condemn
From caricature to portraiture
Henry Miller

3 Radical visual culture: from caricature to portraiture The previous chapter highlighted the importance of portraiture for shaping the identities of the political parties formed in the wake of the 1832 Reform Act. However, it was radicals who were consistently the most innovative in their exploitation of new visual technologies. This was no coincidence. Portraiture was even more valuable to radical movements, which frequently experienced media indifference or hostility. To counter this, radicals produced their own series to project their own self-image to

in Politics personified
Saul Newman

6 Radical politics today I N T H E P R E V I O U S chapter, I explored a number of different approaches to the question of democracy. I suggested that democracy – if it is to be taken seriously today – must be thought beyond the political limits of the nation state, and beyond even the theoretical limits of sovereignty itself. As a form of politics which takes equaliberty as its horizon, democracy can no longer be confined to the state, a political category which, in the very name of democracy, crushes its aspirations and denies its radical potential. Perhaps

in Unstable universalities
The infidel roots of Chartist culture
Tom Scriven

 13 1 A ‘Radical Underworld’? The infidel roots of Chartist culture Historians of Chartism have tended to downplay the role of its initial authors, the London Working Men’s Association (LWMA), in the movement. Although this group both penned and initially distributed the People’s Charter, the impetus and leadership of the movement quickly shifted north, towards a populist Radicalism centred on the charismatic Feargus O’Connor and his newspaper the Northern Star.1 The LWMA are largely seen as moralistic, elitist and too small to properly affect political change

in Popular virtue
Ginger S. Frost

8 Radical couples, 1790–1850 F rom the 1790s to the early twentieth century, some couples consciously dissented from the marriage ceremony because of its indissolubility, the influence of the state or the church on it, or the disabilities that it gave to women. Often the dissent from marriage was a part of a larger critique – for example, by anarchists, socialists, or feminists. At times, too, those who disliked marriage did so from bitter experience, radicalised by their own marital failures. Whatever the cause, these unions diverged by gender. Because of the

in Living in sin
Ginger S. Frost

9 Radical couples, 1850–1914 T he last half of the nineteenth century saw two major phases in marital radicalism. The first phase, lasting roughly from 1850 to 1880, was primarily theoretical. Most couples, whatever their reservations about the institution, chose to marry legally during this period. Mid-century was the high tide of Victorian respectability, and couples could achieve reforms only if they disassociated themselves from scandals. Thus, the working-class movement turned to trade unionism and its version of domesticity, and feminists concentrated on

in Living in sin
Kathryn Milligan

 4  Radicals, workers, and drinkers Assessing the changes that took place in the painting of ‘modern life’ from the late nineteenth century, T. J. Clark recently posed the question ‘why … was there in the twentieth century no “painting of modern life” – or none that Degas and Baudelaire would have recognised?’1 A number of answers to this query were suggested by the author including, for example, the idea that ‘modernity no longer presented itself as a distinctive territory, a recognisable new form of space’, and that ‘the ordinary life of the “modern” had

in Painting Dublin, 1886–1949