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Calls for special issues and chapters

Progressive Neoliberalism and Schooling 

Neoliberalism has reconstituted the human experience at all societal levels in much of the world. While there is remarkable diversity in how neoliberalism is defined and understood, there is wide agreement among scholars that neoliberalism has contributed to an increasing reification of economic rationality in social life, regressive redistribution of income and wealth in favor of the rich, commodification of almost everything, and normalization of the precarity of life in much of the developed world.

The range and depth of neoliberalism’s influence have been much bolstered by its opportunistic, protean ability to co-opt other powerful societal ideas, practices, and movements in order to further its own objectives. Specifically, Nancy Fraser argues that neoliberalism has successfully co-opted powerful currents of social justice movements in the United States in ways that limit their goals for social transformation by redirecting these movements’ efforts, such as for furthering diversity and empowerment, to serve neoliberal ends.

Nancy Fraser has labeled this manifestation of neoliberalism progressive neoliberalism (see Fraser, N. (2017). From progressive neoliberalism to Trump—and beyond. American Affairs, 1(4), 46-64), which she describes as a hegemonic bloc of seemingly incongruent social forces of hyper-capitalism and new social movements that combine plutocratic, exploitative, capitalism with the politics of recognition-focused liberalism. This hegemonic bloc has championed liberal goals of empowerment, inclusion, LGBTQ rights, post-racialism, multiculturalism, post-sexism, and environmentalism by relocating and articulating justice-oriented ideals within the overall political economy of financialized hyper-capitalism. For example, this reductive understanding has led to the reduction of struggles for equality to pleas for meritocracy, the transmutation of emancipation to self-responsibilization and self-enterprise, and the manifestation of caring for the environment as support for carbon trading.

Though the notion of progressive neoliberalism has been contested on analytic and ideological grounds, there is an emerging body of scholarship that traces footprints of Fraser’s notion of progressive neoliberalism in diverse disciplinary fields, such as media studies, women’s studies, and social work. This research furthers our understanding of the oxymoronic, variegated, and contingent manifestations of neoliberalism while also highlighting promising spaces for theoretical (re)inventions and social change in feminist struggles and social welfare. Fraser’s analytic schema has been sparingly applied in educational research, but there has been a steady accumulation of scholarship that explores how neoliberalism has co-opted social justice efforts to further meritocratic ideals and justify social efficiency goals in education.

At this moment, we are experiencing an interesting interlude in the sociopolitical history of the world: it is not clear if the hegemony of progressive neoliberalism has been irreparably damaged by the rising reactionary populism of ethno-nationalism or if neoliberalism has become part of a new hegemonic bloc which invents new ways to satisfy the nativist impulses of the downtrodden while furthering the material interests of the economic elite. It is important, therefore, for the education community to both look back to understand how progressive neoliberalism has shaped education in the developed world, and also anticipate the emerging contours of new hegemonic and counter-hegemonic blocs that may supplant progressive neoliberalism in the near or distant future.

With these goals in mind, we are proposing an edited volume that will offer conceptual and empirical analyses on manifestations of Fraser’s notion of progressive neoliberalism in education at all levels and in both formal and informal spaces. We seek chapter manuscripts that address one or more of the framing questions listed below. Recognizing the prolific diversity of perspectives, methodological orientations, and agendas in the education community, as well as the lack of consensus on the nature or even existence of progressive neoliberalism, we expect and encourage vigorous dialogue and contestation. We specifically encourage critically oriented contributions that offer promising directions for future research and strategies for collective progressive action that disarticulate neoliberal hegemony and offer visions of alternative hopeful futures.

Framing Questions

  • What are the variegated, contingent manifestations of neoliberalism in education?
  • Have progressive, social justice efforts to improve education been co-opted by neoliberalism in education? How?
  • Is progressive neoliberalism a useful/productive conceptualization for understanding the ways in which neoliberalism interacts with other social forces to shape education in advanced capitalist societies?
  • What conceptual tools and political strategies could be used to disentangle progressive efforts in educational contexts from the grip of neoliberalism?
  • How has progressive neoliberalism responded to the emergence of reactionary populist forces within educational spaces?
  • What new hegemonic and/or counter-hegemonic blocs might emerge in the near or distant future?

How to propose a chapter

We request that interested scholars submit a 500 word summary for a chapter of 3000-5000 words. The summary should describe how the chapter will address one or more of the framing questions. Descriptions of empirical research should include the theoretical framework, methods, findings, and implications. Theoretically-based research should include descriptions of the framework and concepts that underpin the research and the equivalent of methods and findings which are relevant to that genre of scholarship. Please email your submission to by January 29, 2020.

About the process

The editors have been approached by a leading international academic publisher for this project. We anticipate including 10-12 chapter summaries in our book proposal which will be submitted by February 26, 2021. The book proposal will be peer-reviewed, and if accepted, chapters will be due by June, 2021. We hope to have the book published before the end of 2021.

Editors: Ajay Sharma (, Mardi Schmeichel ( and Beth Wurzburg (


Call for Chapter Proposals: The Female Teacher on Television

Rationale: There have been a few excellent studies of the way that teachers have been represented on both the television and silver screens. Mary Dalton's Teacher TV and The Hollywood Curriculum, Robert Bullman's Hollywood Goes to High School, Pamela Boutin Joseph and Gail E. Bunaford’s edited volume Images of Schoolteachers in America, and Sevan Terzian and Patrick Ryan's edited volume American Education and Popular Media: From the Blackboard to the Silver Screen have all focused, at least in part, in the ways that teachers have been portrayed in popular media.

The purpose of this proposed edited volume is to build on the groundwork laid by those books. At least during the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, the teaching has been a predominantly feminized profession. Yet, there has been no book-length study exploring the female teacher on television. This volume is intended to serve as a history of the changing ways that television has depicted female teachers and the way that television has provided a medium for female educators to reach a wider audience. The book will be divided into three parts, each roughly corresponding to the first, second, and third/fourth/Nth feminist waves. An academic publisher with a peer-reviewed book series on popular culture and education has expressed strong interest in publishing this volume.

Submission Areas: Predicted possible topics for chapters include, but are not limited to:

  • The female teacher on television prior to the women's rights movements of the 1960s and 1970s (e.g., Our Miss Brooks, Leave It to Beaver, The Andy Griffith Show); 
  • Females on public, public access, and other educational television (e.g., the women of Sesame Street or Mr. Roger's Neighborhood, Miss Nancy and the other franchised hostesses of Romper Room);
  • The effect of the women's rights movements on television depictions of the female teacher in the 1970s and beyond;
  • The female teacher during the era of the “masculine” teachers on television (i.e., female teachers in the era of Welcome Back Kotter, Head of the Class, and Boy Meets World);
  • Intersectionality and the female teacher (e.g., representations of women of color, queer teachers, and female teachers with disabilities on television);
  • The female teacher in animated programing (e.g., Miss Frizzle from The Magic School Bus, Edna Krabappel from The Simpsons);
  • Representation(s) of  female teachers in teen/young adult programming;
  • Sexuality or marital status and the female teacher on television;
  • The influence of genre on television depictions of the female teacher (e.g., the female teacher in historical fiction, reality television, urban drama series, etc.);
  • The influence of subject area speciality on television depictions of the female teacher (e.g., the female science, social studies, or language arts teacher);
  • The influence of grade level on television depictions of the female teacher (e.g., female elementary school teachers, high school teachers, college/university teachers);
  • Social class mobility and/or “women’s work” as it relates to the female teacher on television;
  • Female teachers in commercial advertising, music videos, or other short-form television formats; and/or
  • The female teacher in international/transnational television programming

ProposalsWe thus invite educational and popular culture scholars to submit the following to both of the editors appearing below:

An abstract of 500 words (excluding sources cited) providing an overview of the chapter in its entirety

A list of tentative sources cited/data points; and

Brief (1-2 page) curriculum vitae for each contributor including, when relevant: affiliation/position, publication history, and educational history.

Please note: Graduate students and independent scholars are encouraged to submit. When possible, we encourage collaboration with a university faculty member.

Proposal SubmissionsPlease submit proposals for chapters here: 

Manuscript Submissions: If accepted, contributors will be responsible for producing manuscripts that meet the following criteria:

  • be relevant to the field and further the conversation;
  • be a minimum of 5,000 words (20-35 pages) in length;
  • follow all formatting and style guidelines from the Chicago Manual of Style;
  • contain all original material (not have been previously published); and
  • not contain any copyrighted material. (Depending upon the publisher’s specifications, screen captures of television images may be allowed but will be limited and will certainly not exceed two images per program.)

Important Deadlines and Dates:

Submission of abstracts to editors: April 30, 2021

Notification of decisions to contributors: July 2021

Submission of proposal to publisher: August 2021

Chapter submission to editors: November 2021

Revision/redraft of chapters from editors: February 2022

Revision re-submission from contributors: April 2022

Submission to press: July 2022 

Tentative publication date: Winter 2022

Editor Information:

Submit chapter proposals here:

All enquiries should be directed to:

Dr. Rebecca Grunzke

Instructor of Education 

Tift College of Education

McDonough, GA 30253

Phone: (678) 547-6589



Dr. Andrew Grunzke

Associate Professor of Education 

Tift College of Education

McDonough, GA 30253

Phone:(678) 547-6545