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Toolkits, Translation Devices and Conceptual Accounts

Essays on Basil Bernstein’s Sociology of Knowledge


Edited By Parlo Singh, Alan R. Sadovnik and Susan F. Semel

For over four decades, Basil Bernstein researched ‘the internal organisation and educational context of the school’ specifically, and educational systems generally. In particular, he was interested in the powerful forms of knowledge transmitted through schooling systems; who gained access to these forms of knowledge; how they did so; and with what consequences. His research began by examining the differences between language and communication patterns in the institutions of the home/family and of the school, and extended to examining the structuring of pedagogic discourse from the level of the state to the classroom.
This collection brings together chapters by researchers from South Africa, Portugal, the United Kingdom, United States, and Australia, to build on the theoretical concepts developed by Bernstein to explore issues of access and acquisition to school knowledge. In addition, contributors explore the strengths and limitations of Bernstein’s work for understanding the structuring of educational institutions, as well as the potential of the theory for assisting educators to make a difference in the lives of students.


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Contributors 267


Contributors KAREN BRADLEY is Professor and Chair of the Department of Sociology at Western Washington University, USA. Dr. Bradley obtained her B.A. in English, along with a secondary teaching certification, from Providence College. She received her M.A. in Higher Education Administration from Boston College, and her M.A. and Ph.D. in sociology from Stanford University in 1994. Her research and her class- es blend her interest in organizational processes, education, and gender. Much of Dr. Bradley’s research has examined women’s participation within higher educa- tion by field and by level of attainment within countries throughout the world. She is currently collaborating with Dr. John Richardson on a research project investi- gating the development of the field of educational psychology over time within the United States. HARRY DANIELS is Professor of Education, Culture and Pedagogy, Head of ‘Learning as Cultural and Social Practice’ Research Programme, and Director of Centre for Sociocultural and Activity Theory Research at the University of Bath, England. His research interests include socio-cultural and activity theory, special needs and social exclusion, social emotional and behavioural difficulty including exclusion from school. His key publications include Daniels, H., Cole, M., and Wertsch, J. (Eds) (2007) Cambridge Companion to Vygotsk; Daniels, H., Leadbetter, J., Soares, A., and McNab, N. (2007) Learning in and for cross-school working, Sadovnik_12 to end.qxd 3/8/2010 9:15 PM Page 267 268 | ESSAYS ON BASIL BERNSTEIN’S SOCIOLOGY OF KNOWLEDGE Oxford Review of Education; and Moore, R., Arnot, M., Beck, J., and Daniels, H. (2006) Knowledge, Power and...

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