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Re-situating Canadian Early Childhood Education

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Edited By Veronica Pacini-Ketchabaw and Larry Prochner

This book presents research exploring the potential for postfoundational theories to revitalize discussions in early childhood education. In the past two decades, postfoundation theories (e.g., postmodern, poststructural, feminist, postcolonial, etc.) have revolutionized the field of early childhood education, but at the same time, little has been written about the value and potential of this movement within the context of Canada. Postfoundational theories have the potential to disrupt normalizing early childhood education discourses that create and maintain social inequities, and to respect differences and diversities. Given the importance of diversity in Canada, it seems relevant to explore further how postfoundational theories might transform early childhood education.
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7 Immigrant Parents Taking Part in Their Children’s Education: A Practical ExperimentJudith K. Bernhard

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A Practical Experiment

Judith K. Bernhard

There is increasing recognition of the role of power in all social and authoritative discourses, especially those connected with family values and the rearing of children. Mainstream texts and articles, as well as definitive manuals such as DSM-IV, are entirely permeated with assumptions that are taken for granted and never identified, explained, or defended. Postmodern and poststructural theories have brought these assumptions forward for analysis and critique. Several themes have emerged about the underlying processes of child rearing and children’s education. For example, Bourdieu (1986) has stressed the symbolic and real violence involved in conceptions of social and cultural capital. The assimilation and adaptation of immigrants have been subjects of debate for several decades.

Recently, however, several issues related to power and social conformity have come to the fore. For example, a Tennessee town debates whether to allow the construction of a mosque. A law providing fines for wearing head covering has been implemented in France and the first Muslim women challengers to the law have stepped forward. Another theatre of resistance has been opened. New and resurrected proposals for English-only instruction and official government documents have been in the news (e.g., in Arizona, Florida, and California) recently. The dismal economic and employment situation has led to social eruptions in certain areas. The summer riots of 2011 in London persisted for several days and have given rise to calls to investigate their underlying causes. There are basic facts...

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