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Barn och etik: möten och möjlighetsvillkor i två förskoleklassers vardag
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Didactic Science and Early Childhood Education.
2010 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)Alternative title
Children and Ethics : Ethical Encounters and Conditions in the Everyday Life of Two Preschool Classes (English)
Abstract [en]

The aim is to examine how children create and embody ethics by analyzing their encounters and how possibilities are conditioned by the framework surrounding them. The focus has been on the following problem areas:

  • Conditions that enable children’s ethical encounters with regard to frameworks, rules and order
  • Conditions that enable children’s ethical encounters related to the teachers’ approach
  • Children’s encounters in play from an ethical perspective
  • Children’s encounters with nature from an ethical perspective

The theoretical standpoint is ”the ethics of an encounter” from Emmanuel Levinas’ idea of ethics of alterity. In ethics which precedes being itself, the ethical becoming and its relational aspects appear in the encounter with the Other. The tools of analysis are mainly drawn from previous pedagogical/didactical research in ethics which highlights the ethical conditions, such as listening, encounters with diversity and differences, and preschool/school as an ethical space.

The study is based on one year of ethnographical field studies relying on participant observations, video observations, focus groups, stimulated recalls and guided tours. The empirical findings show that rules and frameworks which regulate the everyday life of the preschool classes are repeatedly negotiated. The negotiations about “what’s what?”, where both the children and the teachers are involved, take place on a verbal and a bodily level. In the pedagogues’ approach, the listening is a central and complex condition for the ethical space in the preschool classes. In the children’s encounters in play and in their encounters with nature the relational aspect becomes clear. The ethical boundaries and the fixing of those boundaries are discussed in connection with the idea of the ethics of an encounter and the vision of preschool/school as a potential ethical space.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Institutionen för didaktik och pedagogiskt arbete, Stockholms universitet , 2010. , 241 p.
Doktorsavhandlingar från Institutionen för didaktik och pedagogiskt arbete, Stockholms universitet, 8
Keyword [en]
Children, ethics, the ethical encounter, fundamental values, pedagogical approach, listening, play, the encounter with nature, ESD
Keyword [sv]
barn, etik, det etiska mötet, värdegrund, etnografi, förhållningssätt, lek, möte med naturen, lärande i hållbar utveckling
Research subject
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-38373ISBN: 978-91-7447-045-1OAI: diva2:309964
Public defence
2010-05-07, Dahlströmsalen, Campus Konradsberg, hus D, Rålambsvägen 26 D, Stockholm, 13:00 (Swedish)
Available from: 2010-04-15 Created: 2010-04-11 Last updated: 2010-06-15Bibliographically approved

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Halvars-Franzén, Bodil
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