Critical Studies of Education in Asia features analyses that take seriously the complex postcolonial, historical, and cultural consciousnesses felt across societies in Asia, and that bring these to bear on the changing terrain of knowledge, subjectivities, and power relations constructed both within schools and across the public sphere.
In documenting the multiple sites of conflict and contestation both between and within states in Asia and a host of pedagogic agents – ministries of education, state boards and agencies, schools, teachers and teacher unions, university departments of education, local interest groups, the media, international standards agencies, and global educational reform discourses – the chapters in this volume illuminate the struggles over knowledge, education, and the work of schools. Faced with emergent global and local forces that are determined to challenge ‘official’ knowledge and to offer alternative understandings of education and society in Asia, this volume offers critical insights for academic researchers, policy- makers, and graduate students seeking to understand the tensions and possibilities of educational change in the region. This book was originally published as a special issue of Curriculum Inquiry.
Table of Contents
Introduction – The politics of curriculum reforms in Asia: Inter-referencing discourses of power, culture and knowledge Leonel Lim and Michael W. Apple
1. Subterfuge hegemony: The simmering politics of the shelved Hong Kong moral and national education debates in the media Aaron Koh
2. Educators as transformative intellectuals: Taiwanese teacher activism during the national curriculum controversy Cheng-Yu Hung
3. Culture, pedagogy and equity in a meritocratic education system: Teachers’ work and the politics of culture in Singapore Leonel Lim and Michael Tan
4. Neoliberal global assemblages: The emergence of "public" international high-school curriculum programs in China Shuning Liu
5. How to mess with PISA: Learning from Japanese kokugo curriculum experts Keita Takayama
6. Politics and the practice of school change: The Hyukshin School movement in South Korea Youl-Kwan Sung and Yoonmi Lee
Afterword: On new critical East Asian educational studies Allan Luke
Leonel Lim is an associate professor at the National Institute of Education, Singapore. His research focuses on the relations between ideology and curriculum, the socio- political assumptions of rationality, and the sociology of curriculum. He is the author of Knowledge Control and Critical Thinking in Singapore (Routledge, 2016), and, together with Michael W. Apple, editor of the Routledge book series Politics of Education in Asia.
Michael W. Apple is the John Bascom Professor of Curriculum and Instruction and Educational Policy Studies at the University of Wisconsin, USA and distinguished professor of education at the College of Education, Rowan University, NJ, USA. Among his many books are Ideology and Curriculum (1979), Education and Power (1995), Official Knowledge (2000), Can Education Change Society? (2013), and most recently The Struggle for Democracy in Education (2018).