Helena Pedersen

Helena Pedersen


Visa sidan på svenska
Works at Department of Child and Youth Studies
Visiting address Frescati Hagväg 24
Room 404
Postal address Barn- och ungdomsvetenskapliga institutionen 106 91 Stockholm

About me

Senior lecturer and Associate professor

Section for Child and Youth Studies

Leave of absence, see SUKAT


Teaching in courses Children, Culture, Globalization, Degree work, Research in Child and Youth Studies.


Key words

Critical animal studies, critical education theory, continental philosophy, posthumanism


I received my PhD in Education from Göteborg University (2007) and have held post doc positions both at Uppsala University (the Centre of Gender Research) and at Malmö University (the Faculty of Education and Society), before joining, in 2013,  the Department of Child and Youth Studies at Stockholm University. Principally, my research focuses on human-animal relations as an area of critical inquiry in education research. I am interested in how the formal education system relates to, and works on, its human and nonhuman subjects, and how animals figure in the production, mediation, and dissemination of knowledge more generally. A further line of questioning has led me to enquire into the ways in which education, pedagogy and learning is transformed both in interplay and in conflict with the specific questions evoked by a critical approach to human-animal relations.  Through posthumanist theories I explore how the dynamics, affects, materialities and institutions of animal use intra-act in and through the daily activities of the school. I critically analyze how power relations take shape between students, teachers, animals, and the education system as such, but also how tensions and instabilities in these power relations may produce spin-off effects that work in indeterminate directions.   

Research interests

I am interested in posthumanist theory and method development in, primarily, the field of education research, working with a repertoire of posthumanist approaches such as zooethnography, feminist materialism, affect theory, and schizoanalysis. Within the field of child and youth studies, I am particularly interested in the following areas and issues:

  • Animal tourism and ”edutainment” experiences targeted at families and children  (zoos, theme parks, agritourism etc.);

  • Child – animal relations in global commodity cultures;

  • The work of the animal-industrial complex through social, cultural, and educational arenas for children and youth;  

  • Meat normativity and socialisation processes;

  • Biopolitical and biocapitalist dimensions of education;

  • Queer and nihilist perspectives on ”the child”;  

  • Implications for education philosophy by the notion/the epoch of the Anthropocene.

Present research project

I am currently working on a book manuscript based on my recently completed research project Posthumanist Education: Animals, Science, and Critique. Central to the project’s argument is that formal education works as an active agent in the reproduction of animal stratification and exploitation in society and science; this work takes numerous lively, affective, and creative forms in educational practice. Its consequences also unleash subversive student-animal assemblages that may, at least momentarily, elude didactic control. The book project is an open call to these assemblages to expand, proliferate, and reach a critical mass in order to bring about educational and political change.

Last updated: May 16, 2017

Bookmark and share Tell a friend