The paradox of exclusion through inclusion
Interpreting inclusion from a critical pedagogical perspective
Keywords:inclusion and exclusion, special needs, inclusion policies, adult education, critical pedagogy
In our contribution we investigate firstly the general discussion on inclusion in education that had its origins in educational reform movements and in special needs education policies and practices. In line with this, we describe the growing interest in international organizations, resulting into varied attempts on national and local levels to create equal opportunities for all, with particular attention for students with special needs. We furthermore analyse how these concrete policies and practices of inclusive education often coalesced with deficit approaches, resulting into the above-mentioned paradox of exclusion through inclusion. In a next step, we explore how and why inclusive practices keep on reinforcing existing dependencies and possible ways out of the dilemma. In a final section we analyse how in adult education research literature, this paradox of exclusion through inclusion is dealt with and what answers are developed in this particular field of research.
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