The Abject in Education

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This paper will explore Julia Kristeva’s theory of abjection and its manifestations in society, culture and discourse. It will make specific reference to the effects of social abjection on women with regards to menstruation, but the claims and proposal could very well be adapted to apply to other marginalised members of society. It will use Hillel A. Schiller’s suggestion for viewing education as a ‘cognetic process’ to frame the discussion on embedding discussions of the abject into the curriculum. It will firstly explore and set the foundations for the theory of abjection, as described by Kristeva and explore the ‘cognetic process’ in relation to social abjection. Finally, it will suggest that an appreciation of an aesthetic educational experience could be viewed as a step towards lessening the effects of social abjection and work towards its reconfiguration.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Aesthetic Education
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2020


  • Education
  • Abjection
  • Kristeva
  • Literature
  • Aesthetic Education
  • Psychoanalysis

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