AbstractsEducation Research & Administration

Affectivity in the classroom

by Emilia Åkesson

Institution: Linköping University
Year: 2014
Keywords: Feminist postconstructionist perspectives; feminist intersectional corpomaterialism; pedagogies; didactics; methods; classrooms; assemblages; affects; emotions; intersectional critical pedagogy; anti-oppressive education; norm critical pedagogies; Social Sciences; Other Social Sciences; Gender Studies; Samhällsvetenskap; Annan samhällsvetenskap; Genusstudier; Gender Studies - Intersectionality and Change, Two Year; Gender Studies - Intersectionality and Change, Two Year
Record ID: 1363564
Full text PDF: http://urn.kb.se/resolve?urn=urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-107163


In this study I aim to contribute to the field of feminist corpomaterial intersectional pedagogies, which I understand as a part of the broader field of feminist postconstructionist pedagogies. Against the background of feminist postconstructionism I wish to overcome binary understandings of for example discourse/materiality, theory/practice, male/female and mind/body in pedagogies. To follow this through I have analysed how affects and emotions are present in a classroom by studying the possibility of taking a starting point in the body while rethinking the anti-oppressive and norm critical pedagogical idea of the self-reflective teacher. In order to challenge the idea of the teacher as a neutral, universal and rational knowledge producer, I have in this study analysed how one can affectively and emotionally situate teacher-bodies and participant-bodies in a classroom.   The analysis was carried out on the basis of empirical material collected at a workshop on corporeality and norm critical pedagogy organised in a teacher-training program at a Swedish university. The workshop was conducted as intra-active-research and the material consists of my field diary, eight written interviews, one oral interview and my experiences from leading the workshop. I argue in this study that teacher-bodies affectively and emotionally could be situated as both following a corporeal schema, an expected plan for how a teacher-body should act and move, and also as stepping away from and disrupting this schema. Further on I argue that teacher-bodies could be situated as memory banks and as working from memory. I stress how important it is in pedagogic situations to be aware of the ways in which bodies in a room affect and are affected by each other, in other words; how bodies “do not end at the skin”. This affective and emotional situatedness shows how it is possible to overcome the idea of teachers and students as bodily neutral. I also argue that it might be important to integrate workshops on corporealities in teacher training. This could be one possible way to start to think on one’s affectively and emotionally situatedness as teacher, something I claim as required if one aspires for a feminist intersectional corpomaterial pedagogy.