Exploring the Affective Dimensions of Educational Leadership : Psychoanalytic and Arts-based Methods book cover
1st Edition

Exploring the Affective Dimensions of Educational Leadership
Psychoanalytic and Arts-based Methods

ISBN 9780367784195
Published March 31, 2021 by Routledge
208 Pages

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Book Description

Bridging the gap between academic parlance and arts-based inquiry, this unique text presents a socio-affective exploration of educational leadership. The text challenges inherited ideological and normative assumptions and invites its reader to reimagine leadership as a dynamic, emotional, and relational process.

Exploring the Affective Dimensions of Educational Leadership combines the ambiguity of arts-based work with the interpretative power of psychoanalysis to illustrate the role of mutuality, personal interpretations, and formative relations on leadership practices. By emphasizing leadership as the constant striving for recognition, the chapters expose the affective dimensions that infuse educational leadership practice and in doing so, propose a new way for educational leaders to respond to complex and emotionally charged incidents in school contexts, thereby promoting democratic practice and positive collegial relations.

An engaging and insightful text, this book will be of great interest to graduate and postgraduate students, researchers, academics, and professionals in the fields of educational leadership, educational research, and psychoanalysis.

Table of Contents

List of Photos

List of Poems

List of Plays

List of Episodes




Part One: Affect as a Shadow in the Field of Leadership

Fantasies of Objectivity

Affect Shadows

Psychoanalytic Shadows

Beauty Shadows

Part Two: Dancing with the Unconscious – Relational Affective Forces

You Bring Something Out in Me

This Feels Familiar



In Your Dreams

Part Three: Communicative Bodies in Sensuous Encounters

Word Play

Narcissistic Signalling

Denial of Loss


Living with the Paradox

The Unbidden


Part Four: Relational Leadership as Socio-aesthetic Inquiry

Staging Educational Leadership as Psychoanalytic Theatre

Images of Practice

Arts-Based Research

The Field of Educational Leadership

Conclusion as Distillation


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Alysha Farrell is Assistant Professor in Department of Educational Leadership and Administration and the Department of Curriculum and Pedagogy, Brandon University, Canada.