A ‘region’ under siege? Singularisation, regionalisation and genericism in Early Childhood Studies in England

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


This paper draws on Bernstein’s sociology of knowledge to examine the academic study of early childhood in England, involving scrutiny of how knowledge is recontextualised from contributory disciplines to take account of early childhood practice and professionalism, and of governmental influence on what counts as disciplinary and curriculum knowledge. The relatively fragmented disciplinary structure of Early Childhood Studies suggests vulnerability to attempts to control its purpose. However, this is mitigated by commitments within the academic community to traditions of early childhood practice, and a sense of advocacy and shared values. The analysis draws upon a recent investigative project undertaken at English higher education institutions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)118-131
Number of pages14
JournalInternational Journal of Early Years Education
Issue number2
Early online date8 Apr 2018
Publication statusPublished - 3 Apr 2019


  • academic disciplines
  • Bernstein
  • Early Childhood Studies
  • professional knowledge

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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