Speculative Fictions and Curricular Futures: Envisioning Rural Educational Utopia
International Association for the Advancement of Curriculum Studies
Situated within the local context of New Brunswick—a small, mostly rural, Canadian province with an aging population and a steady influx of new residents from other countries—this article speculates new curricular possibilities beyond the post-industrial and neoliberal structures of current curriculum and schooling. The authors approach their speculation creatively through a collectively-authored narrative meant to engage the idea of educational utopia within their shared place. In a subsequent discussion of the narrative, the authors reflect on the global phenomenon of neoliberal ideological intrusion into curriculum as manifest in New Brunswick, as well as the myriad forms that intrusion can take. Specifically, the authors discuss: the continued modeling of the school system on adult work, the rigid control of time and the dangers of flexibility in schooling, the desire to expand concepts of community involvement in education, and the urgent necessity of racial equity work in rural spaces. In concluding their discussion, the authors highlight the potential of dreaming new curricular possibilities to disrupt the status quo of education locally and globally.