Intercultural and special education: tensions and ambiguities of discourses on difference
Intercultural education and special education are both fields attending to learners’ diversity. Their relations can be described as complex and ambiguous. Very close, perhaps too close, they try to differentiate themselves from one another, especially in the case of intercultural education which fears the equating of migration with handicap. Our contribution takes the challenge to break the taboo and analyze the convergences and divergences among their discourses on difference, which are situated in the present context of school politics reflecting a new sensitivity to diversity. The model of the dialectical square of cultural difference (Ogay & Edelmann, 2011) makes it possible to analyze the tension between equality and diversity provoked by the consideration of difference. This tension must be considered if we want to avoid contradictory discourses and practices, which make it difficult to meet the challenges of diversity in education.
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