The Potential for Posthuman Insights to Effect Socially Just Pedagogies

Brenda Leibowitz, kibashni Naidoo


In the South African higher education context, which is fraught with inequities and where many feel uncomfortable, the focus on socially just pedagogies and the positioning of teachers in relation to this is not just timeous and relevant, but crucial. In this article we share what we believe a posthumanist view has to offer researchers and educationists. The article revisits data from a scholarship of teaching and learning (SoTL) research project, in which 23 audio-recorded interviews were conducted with academics from a variety of faculties and units for academic development. We discuss two discourses which emerged from our reading of the data: the first concerns lecturers and students having fixed racial identities that influence how learning does or does not take place and the second concerns students learning in a developmental and teleological manner. We discuss ideas culled from the literature on posthumanist ontologies that helped us to respond to these discourses, and which we believe, could be shared with academics and researchers who wish to advance a socially just pedagogy in higher education. We reflect briefly by way of conclusion on what, as researchers, our responses and responsibility towards the data and the complexities of our time could or should be. 


higher education; socially just pedagogies; posthumanism; scholarship of teaching and learning; South Africa

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