Call for Chapters: Education in the Age of Misinformation

deadline for submissions: 
December 15, 2021
full name / name of organization: 
University of Windsor
contact email: 

Dear Authors:

You are invited to submit a chapter proposal for consideration in an upcoming peerreviewed collection, Education in the Age of Misinformation, that aims to examine the implications of misinformation and youth digital life. This new information environment is characterized by: high levels of youth engagement, involving their roles as both consumers and producers; and information abundance, including misinformation and disinformation (Smith & Parker, in press, p. 4). Misinformation is enabled by hidden algorithmic technologies that manipulate digital users. These algorithms produce filter bubbles and echo chambers, connecting users with like-minded individuals who reinforce opinions that support their existing beliefs, values, and knowledge (Dutton et al., 2017; Laybats & Tredinnick, 2016). The effect of these technologies is compounded by the ideological ramifications of the post-truth era. Suiter (2016) describes this information landscape as one “dominated by reality TV, social media and filter bubbles … where appeals to emotion are dominant and factual rebuttals or fact checks are ignored on the basis that they are mere assertions” (p. 25). Taken as a feature of the new information environment, the post-truth era has the potential to redefine how people make decisions and participate in a democracy (Colino, 2016; DeLuca & Christou, 2016; Glasser, 2016; Peters, 2017; Suiter, 2016). This edited collection explores how education might be reimagined to account for misinformation through everchanging digital landscapes, and how it might respond to ensuing philosophical, political, and pedagogical challenges.

Themes

I. Philosophical Inquiries into Post-truth and Misinformation

  • Phenomenological considerations for encounter
  • Technologically mediated subjectivation
  • Questions of relationality online vs IRL (in-real-life)
  • Epistemological shifts, ruptures and possibilities
  • Discussions of our educational responsibilities

To begin, I invite philosophical inquiries into how the changing information environment implicates youth. If, for example, as Levinas (1989) suggests, a truly ethical encounter can only emerge in the face-to face encounter, what does that suggest for the possibilities of online relationality? If we are to take seriously the critique of Western knowledge and epistemic mastery as an idealized outcome, then what of online environments that articulate complex issues in uncomplicated terms? Given that young people turn towards social media to access information about the news (Anderson & Jiang, 2018) and are subject to the implications of digital life for processes of identity formation (Lalonde et al., 2016), I am interested in proposals that explore epistemological and ontological shifts or ruptures that emerge through this time of flux.

II. Education and Democracies in the Age of Misinformation

  • Neoliberalism and hyper-individualism
  • Echo chambers, populism, radicalism and other threats to democracies
  • The public realm vs. the Internet

Political engagement during adolescence can lead to the reinforcement and future patterns of political behaviour, principles, and engagement (Kahne & Bowyer, 2018). This suggests that digital lives and education have a part to play in the formation of citizen identity. Social media and online content play a fundamental role in young people’s ideological development, but are not politically neutral: the technology is shaped by neoliberal hegemony (Neubauer, 2011) and algorithms draw on data to funnel users into ideologically compatible spaces. In addition to concerns of echo chambers, these technologies can render youth prone to predatory recruitment and the risks of radicalization (Lacasa et al., 2017). The second theme, then, considers the changing role of education in a democracy that is confronted by the threat of misinformation and technological manipulation.

III. Responsive Pedagogy

  • Renewing literacies and other curricular approaches
  • Making space for disagreement
  • Fostering bridges between youth digital and IRL lives
  • Teaching to diminish the alienation of vulnerable youth

If neoliberalism prioritizes uninhibited individualism, competition, and consumerism online, so too does it affect education, which is increasingly underpinned by market-driven approaches (Hamilton & Tett, 2021). The neoliberal framework reduces the ethical and emotional complexity of learning (Parker, 2020). It cultivates a cycle of competition between students, rather than fostering trust and collaboration, which can only result in a decline in social democracy as students are limited in opportunities to engage with critical agency, creativity, and participatory democracy (d’Agnese, 2019; Peters, 2017). Furthermore, the increased standardization of expectations and knowledge, in addition to the narrow view of achieving ‘consensus’ within classrooms, does not provide distinct experiences or introduce a range of beliefs, opinions, and identities that are reflective of a diverse democratic society (Mouffe, 2004). The third theme, then, invites exploration of “responsive pedagogy” that addresses the changing conditions of youth life, and proposes ways to reconcile the potential alienation students feel between their digital lives and the classroom.

Contributions and Audience

I invite varied perspectives regarding the effects of misinformation on youth digital life. Submissions can take the form of papers reporting on original research (ie., evidence-based and grounded in theory or practice) or essays that consider theoretical or philosophical implications of the age of misinformation. I welcome contributions from education, sociology, politics, policy, and philosophy of education. The proposed book will appeal to multiple audiences including researchers within education, literacy, philosophy, political sciences, sociology, and media studies. This book can support and help shape potential government policies and curriculum planning, and highlight potential future directions for public education. In addition, this book may be used in undergraduate and graduate courses on misinformation, multiliteracies, and emerging pedagogies.

About the Editor

Lana Parker is an Assistant Professor of Language at the University of Windsor and the Editor of the Journal of Teaching and Learning. She researches educational relationality and meaning-making, including what it means to engage in ethical pedagogy and toward democratic education. Her recent Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council funded research explores existing and potential pedagogical responses to the new information environment.

Initial Submissions

Abstract submissions should be 400-500 words in length detailing the trajectory of the chapter. The Abstract should include the theoretical framework and/or methods and methodology (if appropriate), state the argument, and identify the significance of the issue and/or its implications. Authors should refer to the APA Manual of Style 7th edition.

Manuscript Length

Full chapter submissions will be between 5000 and 8000 words (including references and notes).

Publication Information

Education in the Age of Misinformation is currently under consideration with Palgrave.

The Submission Process

Please send your proposals by email to Helen Liu (hliu566@yorku.ca) or Kristy Smith (smithkd5@yorku.ca) with the subject heading: “Age of Misinformation Proposal.”

Working Trajectory Dates

Call for Proposals: November 01, 2021

Proposals due: December 15, 2021

Notification of decision to pursue manuscript: January 5, 2022

Submission of full manuscripts due: March 15, 2022

Manuscripts returned after peer review; Final editorial decisions: April 15, 2022

Revised manuscripts due: May 15, 2022

Edited collection submitted to publisher: May 30, 2022

References 

Anderson, M., & Jiang, J. (2018). Teens, social media, and technology 2018. Pew Research Center. https://www.pewresearch.org/internet/2018/05/31/teens-social-media-techn...

Colino, S.M. (2016). Brexit, post-truth politics, and the triumph of a messy vision of democracy over technocracy. Brexit and Academic Citizenship, 2016-20.

d'Agnese, V. (2019). Dewey and possibility: challenging neoliberalism in education. Educational Theory69(6), 693-717. https://doi.org/10.1111/edth.12400

DeLuca, C., & Christou, T.M. (2016). Editorial. Canadian Journal of Education, 39(4), 1-3.

Dutton, W. H., Reisdorf, B., Dubois, E., & Blank, G. (2017). Social shaping of the politics of internet search and networking: Moving beyond filter bubbles, echo chambers, and fake news. Quello Center Working Paper, 2944191, 1-26. https://doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2944191

Glasser, S. (2016). Covering politics in a “post-truth” America. Brookings Institution Press.

Hamilton, M., & Tett, L. (2021). Introduction: Resisting neoliberalism in education. In M. Hamilton & L. Tett (Eds.), Resisting neoliberalism in education: Local, national and transnational perspectives (pp. 1-10). Policy Press.

Kahne, J., & Bowyer, B. (2018). The political significance of social media activity and social networks. Political Communication35(3), 470-493. https://doi.org/10.1080/10584609.2018.1426662

Lacasa, P., de la Fuente, J., Garcia-Pernia, M., & Cortés, S. (2017). Teenagers, fandom and identity. Persona Studies, 3(2), 51-65.

Lalonde, M., Castro, J.C., & Pariser, D. (2016). Identity tableaux: Multimodal contextual constructions of adolescent identity. Visual Arts Research, 42(1), 38-55. https://doi.org/10.5406/visuartsrese.42.1.0038

Laybats, C., & Tredinnick, L. (2016). Post truth, information, and emotion. Business Information Review, 33(4), 204-206. https://doi.org/10.1177/0266382116680741

Levinas, E., & Hand, S. (1989). The Levinas reader. Wiley-Blackwell.

Mouffe, C. (2004). Pluralism, dissensus and democratic citizenship. In F. Inglis (Ed.), Education and the good society (pp. 42-53). Palgrave Macmillan.

Neubauer, R. (2011). Neoliberalism in the information age, or vice versa? Global citizenship, technology, and hegemonic ideology. tripleC: Communication, Capitalism & Critique. Open Access Journal for a Global Sustainable Information Society9(2), 195-230. https://doi.org/10.31269/triplec.v9i2.238

Parker, L. (2020). Literacy in the post-truth era: The significance of affect and the ethical encounter. Educational Philosophy and Theory, 53(6), 613-623.

Peters, M. A. (2017). Education in a post-truth world. Educational Philosophy and Theory, 46(6), 563-566. https://doi.org/10.1080/00131857.2016.1264114

Smith, K. & Parker, L. (in press). Reconfiguring literacies in the age of misinformation and disinformation. Journal of Language and Literacy Education, 17(2), 1-27.

Suiter, J. (2016). Post-truth politics. Political Insight, 7(3), 25–27. https://doi.org/10.1177/2041905816680417