Studies in Philosophy and Education

, Volume 20, Issue 6, pp 475-487

First online:

Schooling Bodies Through Physical Education: Insights from Social Epistemology and Curriculum History

  • David KirkAffiliated withDepartment of Physical Education, Sports Science and Recreation Management, Loughborough University, Loughborough

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Using mainly historical material fromAustralia, the paper seeks to understand earlyforms of school physical training, sport andmedical inspection as specialised means ofschooling bodies. The study adopts a socialepistemological perspective in seeking tounderstand the meaning-in-use of notions suchas physical training. It explores the socialconsequences of the practices carried out inthe name of physical training, particularly inrelation to shifts in the social regulation ofbodies over time from a mass, externalised, andcentralised form to a relatively moreindividualised, internalised and diffuse form.This focus on the body is of key importance fora social epistemological study of physicaleducation because it forces us to look closelyat the practices constituting physicaleducation.

biopower curriculum history games physical education physical training schooling bodies social epistemology sport