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Teaching climate crisis? A historical examination of the environmental turn in Dutch textbooks (1948-2021)

Dit is een project onder begeleiding van Prof. Dr. Johannes Westberg (b.a.j.westberg rug.nl).

While the most recent IPCC report (August 9, 2021) gained global attention for highlighting the fundamental and rapidly intensifying effects of climate change, the awareness of an emerging environmental crisis is far from new. Already during the postwar era, such knowledge was promoted by influential books such as Our Plundered Planet (1948), Road to Survival (1948) and, not the least, Rachel Carson’s landmark publication Silent Spring (1962).

The aim of this project is to address how this environmental turn have been expressed in schools and, more specifically, textbooks. More specifically, this study examines how mankind’s relation to the environment and the climate has been portrayed in textbooks in Dutch schools from the postwar-era up til present day. Emphasis will be placed on continuity and change, and the relationship between the textbooks and their social and cultural contexts that may include the public debate mentioned above. The analytical level, theoretical framework and focus (school subjects and stage of education) of the analysis may differ depending on the candidates interest. Possible starting points include critical discourse analysis, and the history of knowledge.

In the context of our present-day awareness of the climate crisis, this project serves both to highlight how this crisis has been addressed in the past, but also how past narratives and discourses on the environment affects present-day textbooks. This project thus provides a useful starting point for how future textbooks may be written.

Experiences of qualitative studies and an interest in historical perspectives are required.

Laatst gewijzigd:22 september 2021 08:20