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Essentializing vs. non-essentializing students' cultural identities: curricular discourses in Finland and Sweden
University of Helsinki.
Dalarna University, School of Humanities and Media Studies, English. Stockholm University. (Utbildning och Lärande)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-9024-330X
University of Helsinki.
2017 (English)In: Journal of Multicultural Discourses, ISSN 1744-7143, E-ISSN 1747-6615, no 2, p. 166-180Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This article examines how students' cultural identities are discursively constructed in the Finnish and Swedish national curricula for the compulsory school. The aim is to illuminate the manifold discourses on cultural identity which prevail within Nordic educational policy. The study employs a critical multicultural education and postcolonial perspective with a particular focus on essentialist and non-essentialist views of identity in the curricular discourses. Through discourse analysis, key terms such as 'cultural identity' and 'multicultural identity' as well as different aspects of cultural identities such as language, gender and religion are investigated. The results show diverging discourses, with distinct differences in their explicitness and implicitness in the two countries. A clear effort to see all students as having multi-layered and multicultural identities is evident in the Finnish curricular discourse whereas a more essentializing discourse emerges in the Swedish curriculum. We conclude with a discussion on the importance of addressing policy discourses on students' cultural identities in order to ensure non-essentialist and socially just teaching and educational practice.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017. no 2, p. 166-180
Keywords [en]
Cultural identity, multicultural student, multilingual identity, national curriculum, Finland, Sweden
National Category
Educational Sciences
Research subject
Education and Learning
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:du-27849DOI: 10.1080/17447143.2017.1311335ISI: 000403398600006OAI: oai:DiVA.org:du-27849DiVA, id: diva2:1218114
Available from: 2018-06-14 Created: 2018-06-14 Last updated: 2018-06-14Bibliographically approved

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Paulsrud, BethAnne

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • chicago-author-date
  • chicago-note-bibliography
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf