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Gramscian Thought

  • By: Sheri C. Hardee
  • In: Encyclopedia of Curriculum Studies
  • Edited by: Craig Kridel
  • Subject:Cultural Studies (general), Curriculum & Content (general), Curriculum Studies

Antonio Gramsci's (1891–1937) posthumously published prison notebooks launched him as a definitive figure in educational theory and philosophy. In terms of education, though, he is perhaps best known for the development of cultural hegemony. Marxist theorists such as Vladimir Lenin had developed notions of political hegemony, meaning that dominant society maintains control over the working classes through direct force, and had thus called for revolution of the working class. Gramsci, however, believed that direct force was not the only way in which hierarchical systems were created and maintained. Rather, his concept of cultural hegemony asked that society move beyond this notion of rule through direct force and examine how knowledge or ideologies are used to maintain control as well. He asked that people examine the ...

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