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Multiculturalism, education for sustainable development (ESD) and the shifting discursive landscape of social inclusion

By Bruce M. Burnett and Felicity A. McArdle


Australia has a long and sometimes turbulent relationship with the migrant Other. This paper examines a component of this relationship via the window of contemporary multicultural policy. The paper begins with an analysis of the political and social conditions that enabled a national and bipartisan policy of multiculturalism to emerge as formalised federal policy during the late 1960s and early 1970s. The paper re-problematises the influences that helped shape Australia's articulation of race and ethnicity and argues that multiculturalism, within a post-September 11 environment, can no longer be framed solely within its traditional framework of social justice. The paper positions education for sustainable development (ESD) as an emerging discursive field that provides educators with an alternative road map for critiquing Australia's fluid relationship with the migrant Other. By linking the tenets of multiculturalism with ESD, this paper suggests pre-service teacher educators are presented with a productive, and at the same time politically palatable, means for regaining pedagogical traction for a semi-dormant agenda of social inclusion

Topics: 130200 CURRICULUM AND PEDAGOGY, 160800 SOCIOLOGY, education for sustainable development,, pre-service teacher education,, multiculturalism,, social inclusion
Publisher: Routledge (Taylor & Francis Group)
Year: 2011
DOI identifier: 10.1080/01596306.2011.537070
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