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Challenging Age Power Structures: Creating a Public Sphere in Preschool through Musicking
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Humanities and Social Sciences Education.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-9007-8332
2016 (English)In: Action, Criticism & Theory for Music Education, ISSN 1545-4517, Vol. 15, no 5, 25-50 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This article explores the possibility of conceiving preschool music activities as a way of forming spaces of participation with society’s youngest. The discussion draws on Hannah Arendt’s (1958) definition of public spheres, and the argumentation is closely linked to an empirical example from musicking events with 1–3 year olds in a non-typical, arts-focused Swedish preschool. In their promotion of equality and plurality in this preschool, the children and the music pedagogues co-construct a public sphere by using a multitude of “languages” and challenge both the hegemonic position of verbal language and other age power structures. In this promotion, other “subjects of music” come into being. Thus, it is argued that society can perceive children as legitimized citizens in the “here and now” and not only in a distant future when they have become fully educated adults. The article challenges current preschool music education and demonstrates alternative social constructions.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. Vol. 15, no 5, 25-50 p.
Keyword [en]
Early childhood music education, citizenship, Hannah Arendt, age power structure, very young children
National Category
Music Other Humanities not elsewhere specified
Research subject
Subject Learning and Teaching
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-134133DOI: 10.22176/act15.5.25OAI: diva2:1033628
Available from: 2016-10-07 Created: 2016-10-03 Last updated: 2016-10-13Bibliographically approved
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Wassrin, Maria
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