Brain_Science_and_Early_Years_Policy_Hop.pdf (197.42 kB)
0/0

Brain science and early years policy: hopeful ethos or 'cruel optimism'?

Download (197.42 kB)
journal contribution
posted on 09.06.2016 by Rosalind Edwards, Val Gillies, Nicola Horsley
Ideas that the quality of parental nurturing and attachment in the first years of a child’s life is formative, hard-wiring their brains for success or failure, are reflected in policy reports from across the political spectrum and in targeted services delivering early intervention. In this article we draw on our research into ‘Brain science and early intervention’, using reviews of key policy literature and interviews with influential advocates of early intervention and with early years practitioners, to critically assess the ramifications and implications of these claims. Rather than upholding the ‘hopeful ethos’ proffered by advocates of the progressive nature of brain science and early intervention, we show that brain claims are justifying gendered, raced and social inequalities, positioning poor mothers as architects of their children’s deprivation.

History

School

  • Social Sciences

Department

  • Communication, Media, Social and Policy Studies

Published in

Critical Social Policy

Volume

35

Issue

2

Pages

167 - 187

Citation

EDWARDS, R., GILLIES, V. and HORSLEY, N., 2015. Brain science and early years policy: hopeful ethos or 'cruel optimism'? Critical Social Policy, 35 (2), pp.167-187.

Publisher

SAGE (© the authors)

Version

AM (Accepted Manuscript)

Publisher statement

This work is made available according to the conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) licence. Full details of this licence are available at: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/

Publication date

2015

ISSN

0261-0183

eISSN

1461-703X

Language

en

Exports