‘Can You Spot a Terrorist in Your Classroom?’ Problematising the Recruitment of Schools to the ‘War on Terror’ in the United Kingdom

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Abstract

This article draws on theoretical insights from Foucault, Rose and the new sociology of childhood to critically examine the development and use of counter-extremism policies and practices in English schools. In particular, the article focuses on the introduction of Learning Together to be Safe: a toolkit to help schools contribute to the prevention of violent extremism and its implications for the rights of British Muslim children and young people. It is argued that this initiative contributes to a process of disciplinary normalisation of young British Muslims, with the intention of producing governable subjects. The analysis reveals a contradictory relationship between the commitment of the British State to upholding and implementing children’s social and political rights (as a signatory to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child) whilst simultaneously pursuing policies and practices that constrain and undermine the social and political agency of British Muslim children and young people.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)115-125
Number of pages11
JournalGlobal Studies of Childhood
Volume4
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2014

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