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Masticating ‘quality’ and spitting the bits out

Holmes, R and Jones, L and Rossholt, N and Anastasiou, T (2015) Masticating ‘quality’ and spitting the bits out. Contemporary Issues in Early Childhood. ISSN 1463-9491


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This paper considers what the repercussions are when the concept of ‘quality’ is examined within the epistemological and ontological theoretical shifts that are afforded by posthumanism. In particular, Braidotti’s (2006) configuring of thinking as ‘nomadic activity’, and the need for process ontology (Braidotti, 2006) together with Massumi’s (2011) ideas relating to activist philosophy create the necessary conceptual space for thinking differently. The paper takes as a point of departure ethnographic data that has emerged from the twin locations of Norway and England that broadly centres on some of the practices, habits and mundanities that are associated with Norwegian and English children (aged between 2 and 4 years) eating food whilst attending their barnehagene or preschool setting. It is within the milieu of eating that we take up the challenge of confronting ‘quality’ where we question whether it is possible to put to one side a universal standard so as to consider other potentialities. Inevitably, we conclude with more questions than answers.

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