This paper explores "spatial struggle" in the formation of professional identities of overseas-born teachers. The basis of this struggle arises from a limited number of subject positions available for them in pedagogical spaces of the Australian system of education. We argue that relations of power/professional knowledge in teacher workplaces as well as the binary strategy of "us" and "them" generate marginal locations for overseas-born teachers within schools. This construction of marginality is informed not only by discourses of what counts as being a professional but also by the conception of workplace as a monocultural, pre-given and bounded entity. By rethinking workplaces as relational, as locations that are connected to other socioculturally produced places through spaces of semiotic flows, we can also rethink the professional becoming of overseas-born teachers. This involves a critical understanding of their situationality, which can be conceptualised as a struggle for professional recognition, voice and place within the real and imagined communities of teachers.
Field of Research
130313 Teacher Education and Professional Development of Educators
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