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Title: The emotional knots of academicity: a collective biography of academic subjectivities and spaces
Contributor(s): Charteris, Jennifer  (author)orcid ; Gannon, Susanne (author); Mayes, Eve (author); Nye, Adele  (author)orcid ; Stephenson, Lauren (author)
Publication Date: 2016
Open Access: Yes
DOI: 10.1080/07294360.2015.1121209
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Abstract: The highly imagined and contested space of higher education is invested with an affectively loaded 'knowledge economy optimism'. Drawing on recent work in affect and critical geography, this paper considers the e/affects of the promises of the knowledge economy on its knowledge workers. We extend previous analyses of the discursive constitution of academic subjectivity through the figuration of 'emotional knots' as we explore three stories of the constitution of academic subjectivities in institutional spaces. These stories were composed in a collective biography workshop, where participants constructed accounts of the physical, social, material and imaginative dimensions of subjectivities in the 'academic-city' of higher education spaces. Identifying moments of 'perturbation' in these stories, this paper considers the micro-contexts of 'becoming academic': how bodies, affects and relations become knotted in precise times and places. The figuration of 'knots' provides an analytical strategy for unravelling how subjects affectively invest in the promises of spaces saturated with knowledge economy discourses, and moments of impasse where these promises ring hollow. We examine the affective bargains made in order to flourish in the corporate university and identify spaces of possibility where optimistic projections of alternative futures might be formed. These stories and their analysis complicate the metanarrative of 'knowledge economy optimism' that is currently driving higher education reform in Australia.
Publication Type: Journal Article
Source of Publication: Higher Education Research and Development, 35(1), p. 31-44
Publisher: Routledge
Place of Publication: United Kingdom
ISSN: 1469-8366
Fields of Research (FoR) 2008: 130103 Higher Education
Fields of Research (FoR) 2020: 390303 Higher education
Socio-Economic Objective (SEO) 2008: 930499 School/Institution not elsewhere classified
930599 Education and Training Systems not elsewhere classified
Socio-Economic Objective (SEO) 2020: 160299 Schools and learning environments not elsewhere classified
169999 Other education and training not elsewhere classified
Peer Reviewed: Yes
HERDC Category Description: C1 Refereed Article in a Scholarly Journal
Appears in Collections:Journal Article
School of Education

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