The disposition of concern: an exploration into the affects of the power-knowledge dynamics uncovered during research into pupils’ perceptions of terrorism
(2016) International Journal of Research and Method in Education, pp. 1-13. Article in Press.
In recent years, counter-terrorism measures have become incorporated into the UK education system, with the latest 2015 Counter-Terrorism and Security Act expanding on previous government policy by making it mandatory for schools to be actively involved with counter-terrorism measures [Clause 21, H.M. Government 2015. Counter-Terrorism and Security Act. London: Crown Copyright, 18]. However, during my research into pupils’ perceptions of terrorism, I discovered that conducting such discussions within the classroom setting were restricted from the outset. These findings are useful in demonstrating the difficulties facing those expected to deliver government policy and highlight how education researchers (and teachers) need to be aware of certain considerations prior to engaging in such sensitive subject matter with young people. This article provides an overview of my findings in this regard and demonstrates the complexities associated with discussing the topic of terrorism, in particular it’s relationship with religion, within schools. By using Foucault’s philosophical insights into power-knowledge [ 1991. Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison. London: Penguin] to analyse this data, I discovered a common trait, which I categorized as ‘the disposition of concern’, that affected and restricted the scope of such discussions. © 2016 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group
education; Foucault; Terrorism