Heterotopic Affinity Spaces

Barden, Owen (2016) Heterotopic Affinity Spaces. Power and Education, 8 (3). pp. 222-236. ISSN 1757-7438

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Official URL: http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.1177/175774...

Abstract

In this paper I theorise a contemporary educational configuration, which comprises a physical classroom and an online space. I invoke the hybrid concept of the heterotopic affinity space as a tool for helping us think more clearly and critically about the character of, and activity within, this configuration. The paper thus contributes an alternative way of thinking about a contemporary educational space. Drawing on an empirical classroom research project, I pay particular attention to the way the disciplinary space of a Sixth Form "dyslexia support workshop" is reconfigured into a space which exhibits features of both a heterotopia and an affinity space. However, neither of these concepts by itself can adequately explain the space. The concept of heterotopia is insufficient because although it indicates certain characteristics of the space, it does not adequately account for the shared learning endeavour; the concept of affinity space is insufficient because although it helps us understand aspects of learning within the space, it does not adequately account for the Otherness of the space. I therefore apply and problematise the metaphors of heterotopia and affinity spaces in relation to the project space, before synthesising these two concepts to reveal resonances and resolve dissonances between them. I propose the new hybrid concept of heterotopic affinity space as a way of better understanding the project space, and suggest this concept may be useful in coming to understand other contemporary educational configurations.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information and Comments: This is the author's post peer review version of an article, the final version will appear in the Sage Publications journal Power & Education.
Keywords: heterotopia, Foucault, space, learning, literacy, dyslexia
Faculty / Department: Faculty of Education > Disability and Education
Depositing User: Owen Barden
Date Deposited: 24 Oct 2016 11:42
Last Modified: 22 May 2017 14:04
URI: http://hira.hope.ac.uk/id/eprint/1714

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