Anna Larsson

Swedish pedagogy: A contested discipline in historical perspective

Academic pedagogy has often been severely questioned in public debates in Sweden, but also considered as central to school and society. Although this contested role has been observed many times throughout its disciplinary history, pedagogy has been much less historically investigated than most other social science disciplines. The aim of this project is to explore the particularity of academic pedagogy and its contested social role in Sweden by historically analyzing the discourse about the discipline since the 1940s. The aim is concretized through three research questions: 1. What has been presented as uses, merits and flaws of academic pedagogy? 2. How has the distinctive features of the discipline been perceived and what has been contested at different times? 3. What are the changes over time and how can these be understood in relation to interests within academic, professional and political contexts? The project will focus on the 1940s, 1970s and 2000s in three rhetorical arenas: research journals, course literature and public debates. By drawing on theoretical perspectives from science studies, and through its synchronic and diachronic analyses, the project will contribute with new knowledge to the history of educational research and to the general history of science. The results from the project may also contribute with a solid base for a more nuanced and constructive discussion on schooling, education and knowledge in Sweden.
Grant administrator
Umeå University
Reference number
SEK 4,870,375
RJ Projects