Bus ride to the future: cultural imaginaries of Australian childhood in the education landscape

Saltmarsh, Sue (2011) Bus ride to the future: cultural imaginaries of Australian childhood in the education landscape. Global Studies of Childhood, 1 (1). pp. 26-35. ISSN 2043-6106


In Australia, as in many other parts of the world, representations of childhood are ubiquitous in what Nikolas Rose refers to as ‘the public habitat of images’. In the education landscape – a term used here to refer to the extensive range of policy-related, pedagogic and promotional sites associated with educational provision, participation and purchase – depictions of children feature prominently, and function as an important means by which dominant discourses of childhood are produced, circulated and maintained. In this article, I analyse images and text from a recent Australian government advertising campaign regarding the proposed national curriculum, in order to explore how familiar images, activities and ideals associated with schooling are implicated in cultural imaginaries of Australian childhood. I consider how notions of order, accomplishment and aspiration function to inscribe and reiterate gendered and racialised discourses through which imagined futures of individual and national prosperity are installed as normative ideals.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Permanent restricted access to published version, in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.
Faculty / Department / School: Historic - Faculty of Education
Date Deposited: 04 Jan 2017 23:51
Last Modified: 15 Mar 2017 03:35
Uncontrolled Keywords: cultural imaginaries; Australia; childhood
Fields of Research : 16 Studies in Human Society > 1608 Sociology > 160809 Sociology of Education
20 Language, Communication and Culture > 2001 Communication and Media Studies > 200104 Media Studies
20 Language, Communication and Culture > 2002 Cultural Studies > 200203 Consumption and Everyday Life
Socio-Economic Objective: C Society > 93 Education and Training > 9305 Education and Training Systems > 930501 Education and Training Systems Policies and Development
E Expanding Knowledge > 97 Expanding Knowledge > 970120 Expanding Knowledge in Language, Communication and Culture
C Society > 95 Cultural Understanding > 9502 Communication > 950205 Visual Communication
Identification Number or DOI: 10.2304/gsch.2011.1.1.26
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/30215

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