Towards a socially just drama and dance curriculum entitlement

Year: 2019

Author: O'Toole, John, Meiners, Jeff

Type of paper: Abstract refereed

The premise that the arts can contribute proactively to a more socially just world is the principle on which the Arts demanded inclusion in the Australian Curriculum. A curriculum without the arts is unjust, and prevents the arts from contributing to a more just world. This premise also lies at the heart of several of the Curriculum’s key principles – a) ‘entitlement’ to the arts for all students as a pathway to a more just society; b) equal entitlement to all five arts, since the arts contribute to social justice in quite different ways; c) the principle of aesthetic knowledge - that is the key to how each art form can make a contribution to social justice distinct from other school learning areas; d) the balance of autonomy, connectivity and integration among the arts to enable them all to empower in their own different ways; and e) recursivity between practice and theory/making and responding. In 2013 the arts writing team established a curriculum that provides all these preconditions for a socially responsible and just curriculum. This paper will explore how that project is progressing in Australia through a national/international study exploring the implementation of Drama in the curriculum.