Traversing New Theoretical Frames for Intercultural Education: Gender, Intersectionality, Performativity

  •  Zelia Gregoriou    


This paper attempts to renegotiate the conceptual and political borders of intercultural education by importing ways of thinking, concepts, aporias and questions relevant to a gendered study of intercultural interactions from theoretical terrains outside the disciplinary borders and discursive limits of intercultural education. A number of theoretical developments in disciplines and area studies committed to a politics of justice beyond identity politics pose the need for rethinking the heading of intercultural education. These developments include: the prevalence of the concept and methodology of intersectionality in migration, gender and ethnicity studies; a concern across various kinds of social and political inquiry for the ‘culturalist emphasis’; poststructuralist theorizations of power, subjectivity and resistance; and, finally, the urge to re-politicize the study of intercultural interactions. The need to rethink intercultural education emerges with regards to curriculum and pedagogy, policy frames and research methodology. This paper proposes a critical appraisal of ‘the ordinary’ in intercultural interaction and the charting of new terrains for intercultural education under three headings: transferring insight from the theoretical and methodological engendering of migration studies towards the engendering of school ethnographies and framings of intercultural interactions; de-racializing and re-racializing, de-genderizing and re-genderizing the analysis of student interactions and systemic aspects of ethic/gender school marginalization; and, bringing performativity in the analysis of racialized and gendered school subjectivities, arenas and practices.

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