29 SES 07, Disrupting Arts Education
One of the most common thoughts and sayings about the arts in education is their power to enhance creativity and motivation in children and youth. This idea is almost taken as an unquestionable evidence when discussing the impacts of the arts in education. The arts are believed to make students more focused, highly motivated when compared to the rest of curriculum subjects, make students improve the results in tests and subjects as maths or sciences, and enhance creativity in order to prepare the citizens of the 21st century, among many other rethorical arguments. In this paper, my aim is to problematize these blind spots, by questioning how the arguments of creativity, motivation and potential are part of the alchemies of the curriculum subjects that act as technologies of government in the making of the contemporary neoliberal citizen as a moral and well behaved subject (Martins, 2013). These discourses on the intrinsec and instrumental values of the arts are shared, with different intensities, by experts in arts education, educators in general, parents and commonly repeated by government agencies. I will consider some of the ingredients of these discourses, such as creativity and motivation, not as natural attributes of the person that can be insuflated and raised through the arts, but as classifications that are mobilized in the making up of a certain kind of subject. In this line, I will take a historical approach as a way of denaturalizing the psychological categories inscribed in these discourses.
Danziger, K. (1997). Naming the Mind: How Psychology found its language. London, Thousand Oaks, New Delhi: Sage Publications. Foucault, M. (1981 ). The order of discourse. Robert Young (ed.), Untying the text: A Post-structuralist raeder, pp. 48-78. Boston, London and Henley: Routledge & Kegan Paul. Hacking, I. (2002). Inaugural Lecture: Chair of Philosophy and History of Scientific Concepts at The Collège de France, 16 January 2001. Martins, C. (2013). Disrupting the consensus: Creativity in european educational discourses as a technology of government. Knowledge Cultures 2, 3, pp. 118-135. Popkewitz, T. (2002). Alchemies and governing: or, questions about the questions we ask. Educational Philosophy and Theory, pp. 64-83.
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