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Education and Collective Action -About Making Kin and Learning to Live and Die well Together Moving beyond -Grasping Posthumanism Education

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Abstract

Only recently have posthumanist ideas been received in educational sciences-the international discussion addressed this topic earlier than the German discussion that is still shying back from critically revisiting topics such as animals and education, methodological approaches such as diffraction or thinking-as this chapter does-about kinship and collective action (Wimmer 2019). Even though the number of approaches to combine posthumanist ideas and educational sciences, education is not a term that is mentioned in glossaries that map the field of posthuman thought (Braidotti/ Hlavajova 2019). Additionally, the large variety of distinctive approaches that are subsumed under the label posthumanism is generally not discussed in educational sciences. Therefore, seminal approaches that try to offer a posthuman understanding of education lack an in-depth discussion of basic terms such as learning, education or subject. Even though talking about terms in a first step seems like a very conservative approach, defining terms and explaining phenomena is necessary to understand the complex formations and interpretations of posthumanism present in education studies, when one wants to maintain the integrity of both posthumanist theory and educational sciences. To do so, this chapter narrows down posthumanism to critical posthumanism. Critical posthumanism is the ongoing theoretical project that tries do decenter human beings in both theory and practice. The prefix post-following Herbrechter-has a double meaning: on the one hand, it signifies a desire or indeed a need to somehow go beyond humanism (or the human), while on the other hand, since the post-also necessarily repeats what it prefixes, it displays an awareness that neither humanism nor the human can in fact be overcome in any straightforward dialectical or historical fashion. (Herbrechter 2018a: 94) The critical in critical posthumanism tries to grasp the gesture of this approach: It raises questions, offers new ways of critique, and tackles the normalized conditions in both daily life and academia. The theoretical perspective of critical posthumanism integrates the lines of thought that only made its own emergence possible; instead of proclaiming posthumanism as the next (logical) step that serves all problems and is not comparable to other theoretical approaches, it situates itself in the history of thoughts and ideas also applying a critical perspective to the discourse that currently emerges around the signifier posthumanism. Therefore, critical posthumanism seems to be the most helpful approach to think about education and educational sciences. That is, because the problem with integrating educational

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... (Bryman, 2012, p.118), 'posthumanism' and 'Bildung'. I wanted to exclude results that focused on 'transhumanism' (and its relevant morphemes), since this is a term often used alongside posthumanism, but was not the focus of my enquiry (in short, transhumanism understands the capabilities of humans as unlimited and enhanceable, with no fixed 'lifetime' in which an individual human life can be said to end (Engelmann, 2020)). I furthermore wanted to include research that made specific mention to 'education' more broadly than just Bildung. ...
... The term 'critical' signifies an ethical-political commitment to analysing and addressing power relations at work in academic practice, as well as in the 'real world' (Braidotti, 2018). Critical posthumanism furthermore does not neglect the specific situatedness of human beings in the world in favour of privileging materiality or posthuman 'others' (Engelmann, 2020). Human beings are the addressees of such a conception, concurrently rejecting human exceptionalism. ...
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