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ERIC Number: EJ943355
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-May
Pages: 8
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-0018-2680
What's Foucault Got to Do with It? History, Theory, and Becoming Subjected
Butchart, Ronald E.
History of Education Quarterly, v51 n2 p239-246 May 2011
The three essays that make up this issue on theory in educational history by Eileen Tamura, Caroline Eick, and Roland Sintos Coloma constitute an indictment of the field of the history of education for its neglect of theory. Read linearly, from the Introduction through Coloma, the indictment becomes increasingly strident, moving from a gentle call for greater consideration of the potential contributions of theory for historical writing to a condemnation of the field for its parochial "indifference, imperviousness, and perhaps even resistance" to theory. As one practitioner within the field who shares with these authors a keen relish for theory and philosophy of history, the author regrets that the challenge to the field to attend more carefully to the possibilities of theory has been presented in exactly this form. His regret flows from the indictment's incoherent form, from its misleading evidentiary base, from its curious move from a broad embrace of multiple theoretical stances to a narrow, crabbed insistence on only one deeply problematic theory as acceptable evidence of the field's theoretical sophistication, and from the stunning effort in the last essay to appropriate and deploy language as power in order to marginalize and exclude from historical inquiry all but the narrowest range of discourse traditions. In this article, the author takes up each of the issues and focuses on the question of theory and history and the current state of the field with regard to theory in historical inquiry. (Contains 7 footnotes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A