Using Biographical and Life History Approaches in the Study of Adult and Lifelong Learning: European Perspectives
Edited By Linden West, Peter Alheit, Anders Siig Anderson and Barbara Merrill
5 Gender: Between the Knowledge Economy and Every Day Life
Kirsten Weber Gender in Adult Education: From Enlightenment to the Learning Economies Along with the increased European interest in Iifelong leaming as a human resource issue the cIassical political task of adult education as a means to gender equality has changed face: as lang as adult education and leaming could generally be perceived as an opportunity for vocational qualification and individual subjectification, research and policy agendas could unite in demanding and exploring the why's and the how's of 'more for more ' : more leaming for more people resulting in more democracy. Curriculum was debated in tenns of labour market demands versus individuals, method in terms of qual ification versus motivation - and gen der inequality in tenns of enlightenment. All on the backdrop of liberal policies and contested social democrat agendas of wider access. Adult education can, however, no longer be perceived simply as space for individual or collective leaming for autonomy and citizenship (e.g. OECD 1 996; Rubenson & Schuetze 2000; Rubenson 2004). Formal education as weI l as informal leaming has been allocated the over-al l political purpose that individuals in the European national states accept and live by, given a new late modem agenda: we are all human resources who must take it upon ourselves to develop competence, qual ification and knowledge as citizens in the European leaming and knowledge economies (EU 2000). The national states will accordingly enter into the world economy, where - through co-operation as weIl as cOlnpetition - they will globally constitute a qual...
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