The death of the educative subject? The limits of criticality under datafication

This article, written with Luci Pangrazio, argues that amidst ongoing technological and social change, there are implications for critical education that result from a data-driven model of digital governance. We argue that traditional notions of critique which rely upon the deconstruction and analysis of texts are increasingly redundant in the age of datafication, where the production of information is automated and hidden. We then explain the concept of the ‘educative subject’ within the liberal education tradition, with specific focus on the role of critique and reflexivity in their becoming.We explore how the logics and practices of datafication and automation pose unprecedented challenges to the educative subject, examining three features in particular: the creation of data subjects; the rise of correlationalism; and the move from representation to operationalisation. We conclude by outlining a research agenda to address the existential challenges posed by data education.

The article can be found here.