This article reports on a small-scale research project that explored the class-consciousness and working-class identities of a small group of student teachers in a university in south-east England. It describes and uses classic Marxist perspectives and sociological theory as an analytical framework to interpret the views of eight student teachers who provide their perspectives in a series of in-depth interviews. It is argued that these student teachers' identities and class experiences have sculpted their motivations to become teachers and that the form of class-consciousness that they exhibit ultimately acts to mould attitudes and perspectives that suit the objectives of twenty-first-century primary education in a capitalist society. Power relations are played out through the struggle between the potential social power that working-class-conscious teachers possess and the forms of professional labour power that are fostered through initial teacher education courses and the habitus from which these students emerge.
To cite this article
ANDREW LAMBIRTH (2010) Class Consciousness, Power, Identity, and the Motivation to Teach, Power and Education, 2(2), 209-222. http://dx.doi.org/10.2304/power.2010.2.2.209