Critiquing Discourses of Resilience in Education

A great piece from Dr Nicola Rivers and Dr Dave Webster on the normalisation of insecurity and the depoliticisation of social structures in ‘resilience’ discourse.

Dave Webster

Sat at the Association of National Teaching Fellows one-day event in sunny Birmingham, I found myself engaging in passive-aggressive tweeting about bloody neo‘resilience’. On my return, I complained about my disquiet with the way the term, and what it has come to stand for, have become pervasive in some parts of education. With great relief, I discovered that my office-mate Dr Nicola Rivers, shares some of my views. Out of our conversation, we have tried to capture the core of what, in a Higher Education context, is so problematic about the narratives on resilience, grit, Millennials, ‘snowflakes’ and academic buoyancy that seem so omnipresent.

There are things we leave out, such as the place of Mindfulness practice, discussions around ‘trigger warnings’, and free-speech on campus; and we hope to write a fuller version of this post, which includes them, possibly for publication elsewhere, but this is an…

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