Definition and characteristic features of a ‘cultural flashpoint’: a case study of Exploring Masculinities, a controversial gender and education programme in Ireland
The concept ‘cultural flashpoint’ (CF) has not been fully defined or described. The authors test this concept through the prism of a controversial gender-focused Irish school programme, Exploring Masculinities (EM). Adopting an instrumental case study methodology, they use media content analysis to develop a temporal trajectory of the CF, describe its shape, explicit and implied contentious themes, and its process. They identify characteristic features of a cultural flashpoint: (i) a focal issue, event and/or object; (ii) conflict; (iii) bounded time period; (iv) the involvement of exo- and multi-sectoral individuals and groups; (v) randomness, opaqueness and conflation among its expressions; and (vi) broadly cultural and not confined to its sector of origin. They offer a definition of a CF and suggest it as a conceptual device for identifying, analysing and understanding contestation about educational (and other) change occurring in the context of wider and more long-standing cultural, social and political movements.
PublicationCambridge Journal of Education
PublisherRoutledge Taylor & Francis Group
Other Funding informationNCCA Ireland
Department or School
- School of Education