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Open Access The co-articulation of national identity and interculturalism in the Irish curriculum: educating for democratic citizenship?

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Article 2008 This article considers social and educational policy responses to increasing ethnic diversity in the Republic of Ireland and related concerns about the intensification of racism in Irish society in the 'Celtic Tiger' era. Drawing on approaches which emphasise the extent to which discourses on 'race' and multiculturalism are woven into a more general concern about the nation, I problematise interculturalism as a policy response to the intensification of racism in Irish society in recent years. Drawing on a corpus of recently published policy documents and curriculum materials currently being used in Irish secondary schools, I argue that racial inequality is more likely to be reproduced, rather than contested, through national and educational policies and practices which are purported to have egalitarian and anti-racist aims. Implications of the study are discussed in terms of alternative approaches to educating for democratic citizenship.

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Keywords: CURRICULUM; DEMOCRATIC CITIZENSHIP; EDUCATIONAL POLICY; INTERCULTURAL EDUCATION; NATIONAL IDENTITY; RACISM; SYMBOLIC VIOLENCE

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 March 2008

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  • Founded in 2003 by the UCL Institute of Education, the journal reflects the Institute's broad interests in all types of education in all contexts - local, national, global - and its commitment to analysis across disciplines using a variety of methodologies. It shares the Institute's aspiration to interrogate links between research, policy and practice, and its principled concern for social justice.

    Drawing on these strengths, LRE is a wide-ranging and engaging journal that features rigorous analysis and significant research across key themes in education, including: public goals and policies; pedagogy; curriculum; organization; resources and technology; and institutional effectiveness. Articles and book reviews are written by experts in education, psychology, sociology, policy studies, philosophy and other disciplines contributing to education research, and by experienced researcher-practitioners working in the field. The highest quality of reporting and presentation are ensured through an independent, anonymised peer-review process. As an entirely web-based open access journal, LRE has been able to offer innovative features and formats including: epistolary conversation; colour photos and illustrations; illustrative video clips.

    LRE welcomes relevant articles and book reviews. Please email them to [email protected]

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