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Welfare Reform on the Web (November 2007): Education - UK - higher

Reconceptualising lifelong learning

P. Burke and S. Jackson

London: Routledge, 2007

Concepts of lifelong learning are crucial to the formation of policy and practice in the UK, Europe and globally. However, although taken as given, such concepts and definitions are highly contestable and tied to formations of gender, class and 'race', and inextricably linked to key issues of social inclusion, exclusion, access and participation. This book exposes the politics around which meanings of lifelong learning are constructed, challenged, resisted and reproduced. The authors argue that the current field of lifelong learning is premised on certain hidden values and assumptions, and exposes the mechanisms by which exclusionary discourses and practices are reproduced and maintained. The book draws on feminist, post-structuralist insights to critique the field of lifelong learning and invites readers to engage in the struggle to create their own spaces for reflexivity, resistances, subversions and possibilities for change.

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