Cultivating identities and differences : a case study of the Hong Kong junior secondary economic and public affairs curriculum

  • Yuen Fun, Muriel LAW

Student thesis: MPhil Thesis (Lingnan)


This thesis studies the junior secondary EPA curriculum and the complex cultural process of teaching and learning of the curriculum. It draws on theoretical frameworks developed in the field of cultural studies and critical pedagogy, particularly works by Michel Foucault, Stuart Hall, Lawrence Grossberg and Paulo Freire. It investigates how the EPA curricular texts attempt to produce the identity characteristic of "rational, sensitive and active citizens" in contemporary Hong Kong through constructing differences that negate the Other. Through analyzing classroom discursive practices, the thesis examines how the curricular knowledge "interpellates" teachers into subject position to talk about the "rational, sensitive and active citizens".

The curriculum is a vast textual world where different and even competing ideological imperatives and discourses coexist and circulate. This thesis argues that teachers' discourses about the EPA curriculum and their classroom discursive practices have contributed to the creation of tensions and contradictions within the curriculum discourse. Such tensions and contradictions, coming from teachers' beliefs and the cultural resources they possess, may delimit the regulatory effect of the curriculum discourse. As a result, the regulatory power of the curriculum discourse on "suturing" subject positions that form identities of "citizens" is subject to negotiation, and critical pedagogies have a role to play to open up dialogues among the subject positions made available in the curriculum.
Date of Award2006
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Department of Cultural Studies
SupervisorPo Keung HUI (Supervisor)

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