The Work of Schooling

Giuseppina Marsico and Antonio Iannaccone

in The Oxford Handbook of Culture and Psychology

Published in print May 2012 | ISBN: 9780195396430
Published online November 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Library of Psychology

The Work of Schooling


The communication process between the school and home is a universal relation that is crucial for cultural organization of human development. Through the balcony metaphor, the chapter outlines how the school is a place in between, a border constantly interfaced with both internal aspects (practices, discourses and different actors) and the wider sociocultural climate. The school balcony, as a border zone, is an area of contact with other relevant educational settings. By standing on the balcony and by adopting a binocular-type vision focused inside and outside school, this contribution explores the many processes implied in the work of schooling, moving from the role played by the socio-economic and cultural dimensions, passing through the analysis of intersectional points with other educational contexts (such as family-school meetings), arriving at the definition of identity in the school (the suggested Educational Self notion). The choice to “be” on the school balcony, even if it's an uncomfortable position, allows one to assume a perspective where one is able to grasp the inherent dynamism of the boundary phenomena.

Keywords: balcony; boundary process; inside and outside the school; school-family intersection; educational self notion

Article.  26314 words. 

Subjects: Psychology ; Social Psychology

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