The Theoretical And Conceptual Tools of Michel Foucault: What Can Art Education Researchers And Art Educators Take From These Analysis?

In this article, I seek to place Michel Foucault’s theoretical contributions into a dialogue with arts education. The attempt to take the French philosopher’s methodologies and studies is not new within the educational field. However, even if with a few exceptions, in arts education field it is still rare to take a Foucaultian perspective in research. My concern is how Foucault’s work, and the great range of work unfolded from this plataform, can give art education researchers and art educators tools for critically engage with their objects of study and practices. When I say ‘critical’ I mean a positioning concerned with the issues of power-knowledge and its effects in the production of certain kinds of person and the reasonability of certain ways of thinking and acting. To say that, it is to accept to denaturalize the most familiar and almost unquestionable ideas in art education, for example, the linking between self-expression and originality. The decentring of the subject is the step to understand art education discursive practices as being inscribed within certain grids of thought that order, organize and give reasonability to limits, frontiers and ways of being. I finish by drawing a space of resistance, connected with the possibility of imagining other ways of thinking and being that make fragile the current relations of power.

Refereed Paper, Creativity and Innovation, European Conference of Educational Research, Bahçeşehir University, Istanbul, September, 2013

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