A Fresh Take on Democratic Education: Revisiting Rancière through the Notions of Emergence and Enaction

Henriette Bastrup-Birk, Danny Wildemeersch


This paper aims at contributing to new ways of thinking about democratic education. We discuss how revisiting this concept may help raise fresh questions in relation to non-formal fora grappling with intricate sustainability issues that span international borders. Starting from Rancière’s ideas on democracy, we first examine a conception of democratic education derived from these ideas. Next, we turn to a complexity informed notion of education as proposed by the two strands of emergence and enaction. We discuss how, in introducing additional dimensions, these strands might fruitfully complement the Rancierian conception of education. We conclude our discussion by proposing to reposition democratic education as a process of (co)-emergence afforded by a series of critical moments which, we suggest, can call forth radically novel visions for governing the commons.

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