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  • Author or Editor: Claire Maxwell x
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This chapter examines how the author’ s journey into ‘ sociology’ and her particular institutional location has shaped the ways in which she understands the discipline and the efforts she has made to position herself within ‘ sociology’, but also various sub-fields within it. The piece also explores how ‘ the rules of the game’ within the Academy today could be understood and reflects on the efforts made by the author to play by these rules in an attempt to forge a ‘ career’. However, the chapter also emphasizes the affective flows that have informed the author’ s journey and how critical these have been in sustaining her desire to be a sociologist and an academic.

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Shifting Boundaries Globally and Locally

Increasingly it is not just the state that determines the content, delivery and governance of education. The influence of external actors has been growing, but the boundaries between internal and external have become blurred and their partnerships have become more complex.

This book considers how schooling systems are being influenced by the rise of external actors, including private companies, NGOs, parent organisations, philanthropies and international assessment frameworks.

It explores how the public, private and third sectors are becoming increasingly intertwined. Introducing new theoretical frameworks, it examines diverse sites – including Cambodia, Israel, Poland, Chile, Australia, Brazil and the US – to study the role of policies, institutions and contextual factors shaping the changing relationships between those seeking to influence schooling.

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Activists, agencies and practitioners in the field of violence against women and girls (VAWG) understand VAWG to be both the consequence and continued cause of unequal relations between men and women. For instance, as an organisation, UN Women states that it works on several fronts to end VAWG, including tackling ‘its main root: gender inequality’1.Yodanis (2004) calls this the ‘feminist theory’ (p 656) position on VAWG, and goes on to suggest that ‘the educational and occupational status of women in a country is related to the prevalence of sexual violence against women’ (p 655). Other writers emphasise that VAWG is legitimated by and contributes to the production and reproduction of a wider set of gender and sexual inequalities (Messerschmidt, 2000; Phipps, 2009; Powell, 2010).

While much research on gender-related violence and its effects has taken place in Southern countries (Garcia-Moreno et al, 2006; WHO/LSHTM, 2010; Parkes and Heslop, 2011), this chapter is concerned with the prevention of VAWG in English and Welsh schools. It questions the extent to which current programmes take as their starting assumption the argument made by many feminists that tackling gender inequality lies at the heart of reducing VAWG. It then discusses the notion of a ‘whole school approach’ and emphasises its importance for VAWG prevention. Drawing on Pierre Bourdieu’s concepts of habitus and field, the chapter explores ways in which the school space (or at least spaces within the school) can be used to challenge and change (if not transform) those power relations which facilitate VAWG in all its forms.

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This book aims to contribute to the emerging field of research and practice that examines and advises how education systems might invite in, be critical of, and form partnerships with a growing number of actors and interests involved in today’s provision of education. In particular, we focus on in-depth analytical explorations of different forms of interactions between external actors and schools in different educational contexts. By doing so, the book conceptualises the various relations that have developed and consider the impact of these for issues of equality across various contexts.

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