Towards a new conceptualisation of marginalisation

Mowat, Joan G (2015) Towards a new conceptualisation of marginalisation. European Educational Research Journal, 14 (5). pp. 454-476. ISSN 1474-9041 (

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The OECD report ‘Equity, Excellence and Inclusiveness in Education’ (Schleicher, 2014) highlights the disparities in attainment and opportunity between children in many countries across the world putting them at risk of marginalisation. This paper draws from both sociological and psychological theory to forward a new theoretical framework by which marginalisation, as it applies to a wide range of contexts, can be conceptualised and further interrogated. It examines how marginalisation is experienced, with a specific focus upon children and schooling, and uses the concept of resilience as a lens through which marginalisation can be understood. It recognises the importance of the wider societal and political context whilst also taking account of the interpretive framework of the individual and how risk and protective factors within the wider environment shape the experience and perceptions of the individual.