Toggle Main Menu Toggle Search

Open Access padlockePrints

Neoliberal subjectivities and the teaching and learning of emotional geographies

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Matej BlazekORCiD, Professor Alison Stenning



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0).


© 2022 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. This paper reflects on tensions and challenges in encouraging and enabling students to foreground their personal emotional material in the learning process, while this process itself remains embedded in the neoliberal subjectivities of the university, wider social contexts and the individual selves. We explore our teaching on a final year undergraduate module in which students are asked to explore the emotional geographies of their everyday lives, and for which specific strategies were employed to create a supportive space in the classroom and beyond. We reflect on how these intentions to enable students to engage in emotional explorations conflict with: the overarching neoliberal infrastructures of the university and its intrinsic grounding in assessment and monitored performance; the wider societal landscapes of inequality; and with how these structural issues pervade individual hopes, routines, anxieties and interpersonal relationships. We conclude by outlining how emotional geography pedagogies need to simultaneously provide adequate space to engage with personal emotional experiences and to question and challenge established institutional frameworks and practices.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Blazek M, Stenning A

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Journal of Geography in Higher Education

Year: 2023

Volume: 47

Issue: 5

Pages: 755-772

Print publication date: 01/10/2023

Online publication date: 24/02/2022

Acceptance date: 01/02/2022

Date deposited: 22/03/2022

ISSN (print): 0309-8265

ISSN (electronic): 1466-1845

Publisher: Routledge


DOI: 10.1080/03098265.2022.2041570


Altmetrics provided by Altmetric