Care: Cartographies of power and politics in ECE Event as iCalendar

21 March 2019

4:30 - 5:30pm

Venue: J1 Lecture Theatre, Epsom Campus

Location: 74 Epsom Avenue, Auckland 1023

Website: Register here


In this Early Childhood Seminar Series event Associate Professor Joanne Ailwood from the University of Newcastle, Australia, examines the concept of 'care' and our uses of the word 'care' in early childhood education and care.

Early childhood educators’ work is embedded in the complexities of relations and relationships, and this relational work is entangled in the word 'care'.

Care can be difficult to define and is often assumed as an inherent ‘good’ in education. In heavily feminised work environments such as early childhood education, it is easily assumed to be part of what naturally occurs amongst educators and children. However, Associate Professor Joanne Ailwood suggests that it "is dangerous to assume we understand a concept as complex and value laden as care without also engaging in reflection and analysis about the complexity and multiplicity of care".

In this seminar she will follow Foucault and Braidotti, asking questions of: Who are we today? What is happening to us? What are we becoming? "Examining care through exploring these questions enables a critical engagement with care; it enables theoretical and political questions to be asked about power and knowledge in relation to care. We can ask what care counts, and under what conditions.

"Care, like classrooms, is messy, relational, in action, situated and contextual. This examination of care enables the perceived connection between care as a necessary ‘good’ to be contested. Instead, care is discussed as ranging across multiple threads and potentials, threads that might sometimes be warm and sustaining, while sometimes being oppressive and stressful."

Joanne Ailwood is Associate Professor in the School of Education, The University of Newcastle, Australia. Her research makes use of poststructural theorising to investigate and challenge some of the common knowledges of early childhood education. This work aims to create spaces for theorising and reflecting upon the nuances and complexities of early childhood education and care. Her work has been published across a range of scholarly journals and book chapters.

This event is part of the faculty's Early Childhood Seminar series.