‘I’m just not that kind of person’: choice, agency and economic subjectivities in multicultural educational contexts

Saltmarsh, Sue (2012) ‘I’m just not that kind of person’: choice, agency and economic subjectivities in multicultural educational contexts. In: Precarious international multicultural education: hegemony, dissent and rising alternatives. Transgressions: Cultural Studies and Education (84). Sense Publishers, Rotterdam, Netherlands, pp. 117-131. ISBN 978-94-6091-893-3


This chapter considers the significance of economic discourse as a technique of governmentality through which families from a variety of cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds are positioned as self-regulating, self-actualizing citizen/consumers (Rose, 1999a, 1999b). Its analysis of excerpts from ethnographic case studies demonstrates the subjective implications of consumer culture and economic discourse in the lives of women living in Australian outer metropolitan suburbs and rural towns. While these women’s cultural backgrounds and socioeconomic circumstances varied, the texts and talk of their everyday consumer experiences reveal the extent to which economic discourse is implicated in shaping their experiences of social worth, personal agency and imagined futures. Positioned within dominant discourses of economic participation via a program designed to facilitate the development of financial literacies, the women in the study draw in turn on gendered and racialised discourses of consumption, achievement, responsibility and transformation in their negotiation of economic subjectivities.
For culturally and socioeconomically diverse schools and communities, I argue, this evidence demonstrates how giving an account of oneself (Butler, 2005) in economic terms is fraught with tensions and contradictions that reflect the
gendered and racialised inequalities of contemporary economic discourse.

Statistics for USQ ePrint 30187
Statistics for this ePrint Item
Item Type: Book Chapter (Commonwealth Reporting Category B)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: © 2012 Sense Publishers.
Faculty / Department / School: Historic - Faculty of Education
Date Deposited: 16 Jan 2017 02:29
Last Modified: 27 Nov 2017 23:51
Uncontrolled Keywords: economic discourse; multicultural education
Fields of Research : 16 Studies in Human Society > 1608 Sociology > 160809 Sociology of Education
13 Education > 1303 Specialist Studies in Education > 130302 Comparative and Cross-Cultural Education
13 Education > 1301 Education Systems > 130101 Continuing and Community Education
Socio-Economic Objective: C Society > 93 Education and Training > 9304 School/Institution > 930402 School/Institution Community and Environment
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/30187

Actions (login required)

View Item Archive Repository Staff Only