Space, equity, and rural education: A trialectical account

    Research output: Book chapter/Published conference paperChapter

    57 Citations (Scopus)


    Space is commonly seen as an essentially neutral category, and moreover as 'completely transparent, unmediated and therefore utterly unknowable' (Rose, 1993: 70). Educational space is typically seen therefore as a 'container' within which education simply 'takes (its) place', with varying degrees of effectiveness and efficiency. From classrooms and schools to larger administrative jurisdictions such as 'districts', 'regions' and 'clusters' ' all such sites and territories operate as commonsense, convenient registers of educational organisation and governance, activity and application. Following a long tradition of programmatic scepticism, however, the question can and should be asked: Are they? What if space is problematised, in an explicit Foucaultian sense? What would result from according spatial relations and dynamics a more deliberate, focused attention, with space taken seriously as a matter of interest and concern, for policy and pedagogy alike? What happens when space is thought differently, and other spaces are drawn into calculation?This chapter takes questions such as these as both its incitement and its topic, in exploring the relationship between what might be called spatial difference-dynamics and educational politics in the field of rural education. Our work has focused on the notions of space, equity and rurality, and links with other investigations of space, communication and power in curriculum and schooling. This present account of the conjunction of education, geography and governmentality is situated within a distinctive educational-administrative jurisdiction, namely New South Wales (NSW), and it is accordingly informed by, among other things, a larger historical geography of Australian education. Our concern here is how best to understand and represent educational space, with its characteristic configurations and challenges of power, difference, identity and disadvantage
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationSpatial theories of education
    Subtitle of host publicationpolicy and geography matters
    Place of PublicationNew York, N.Y.
    Number of pages20
    ISBN (Print)0415403952
    Publication statusPublished - 2007


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