1st Edition

Elite Schools in Globalising Circumstances New Conceptual Directions and Connections

Edited By Jane Kenway, Cameron McCarthy Copyright 2016
    174 Pages
    by Routledge

    174 Pages
    by Routledge

    Elite Schools in Globalizing Circumstances foregrounds the richly theoretical and empirically-based work of an international cast of scholars seeking to break out of the confines of the methodological nationalism that now governs so much of contemporary scholarship on schooling. Based on a 5-year extended global ethnography of elite schools in nine different countries—countries defined by colonial pasts linked to England—the contributors make a powerful case for the rethinking of elite schools and elite class formation theory in light of contemporary processes of globalization and transnational change.

    Prestigious, high-status schools have long been seen as critical institutional vehicles directly contributing to the societal processes of elite selection and reproduction. This book asserts that much has changed and that these schools can no longer rest on their past laurels and accomplishments. Instead they must re-cast their heritages and tradition in order to navigate the new globally competitive educational field enabling them to succeed in a world in which the globalization of educational markets, the global ambitions and imaginations of school youth, and the emergence of new powerful players peddling entrepreneurial models of curriculum and education, have placed contemporary schooling under tremendous pressure. This insightful and though-provoking volume provides a well-researched perspective on the nature of contemporary schooling in the globalizing era. This book was originally published as a special issue of Globalisation, Societies and Education.

    Introduction: understanding the re-articulations of privilege over time and space Cameron McCarthy and Jane Kenway

    1. Staying ahead of the game: the globalising practices of elite schools Jane Kenway and Johannah Fahey

    2. Doing class analysis in Singapore’s elite education: unravelling the smokescreen of ‘meritocratic talk’ Aaron Koh

    3. The Argonauts of postcolonial modernity: elite Barbadian schools in globalising circumstances Cameron McCarthy, Ergin Bulut, Michelle Castro, Koeli Goel and Heather Greenhalgh-Spencer

    4. Privileged girls: the place of femininity and femininity in place Johannah Fahey

    5. Race-ing class ladies: lineages of privilege in an elite South African school Debbie Epstein

    6. The Cyprus game: crossing the boundaries in a divided island Matthew Shaw

    7. Reach for the stars: a constellational approach to ethnographies of elite schools Howard Prosser

    8. Old elite schools, history and the construction of a new imaginary Fazal Rizvi

    9. A comment on class productions in elite secondary schools in twenty-first-century global context Lois Weis


    Jane Kenway is a Professor in the Education Faculty at Monash University, Melbourne, Australia. She is recognized internationally for her research on the politics of educational change in the context of wider social, cultural, and political change. Her more recent books are Asia as method in education studies: A defiant research imagination (Routledge, 2015) and Globalising the Research Imagination (Routledge, 2008). She has recently edited special issues of the British Journal of the Sociology of Education and the International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education, and has published in a variety of journals, including British Journal of the Sociology of Education, Gender and Education, Journal of Education Policy, and Education and Societies. She leads the international team project Elite independent schools in globalising circumstances: a multi-sited global ethnography, and is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Social Sciences.

    Cameron McCarthy is Communication Scholar and University Scholar in the Department of Education Policy, Leadership and Organization (EPOL) and in the Institute of Communications Research at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Illinois, USA. He has published widely on topics related to globalization, canon formation, race and the class conquest of the city, postcolonialism, problems with neoMarxist writings on race and education, institutional support for teaching, and school ritual and adolescent identities in journals including Harvard Educational Review, Oxford Review of Education, Studies in Linguistic Sciences, and The British Journal of the Sociology of Education. His latest book is an edited volume entitled Mobilized Identities, Mediated Subjectivity and Cultural Crisis in the Neoliberal Era (Common Ground Press, 2014). He is currently one of the lead-investigators of the "Elite Schools in Globalizing Circumstances" global ethnography study of youth and education in nine countries and across six regions: Australia, Africa, Asian, Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean.