Arts for Children, Cultural Diversity and the Production of Difference




This article investigates policies of cultural diversity and difference in the promotion of arts to school children. Based on historical examples from concert promotion for children in Norway the article examines how cultural difference has been produced and mobilized strategically in efforts aimed at strengthening diversity. It is argued that, on the one hand, constructions of difference play an important part in the development of cultural identity and visibility, while on the other hand, a focus on difference can be a basis for cultural categorizations, and potentially, for the formation of unfortunate stereotypes. The article is informed by debates and discussions on arts for children, with reference to theorizations of difference from anthropology and education studies. Questions raised concern how difference best can be addressed in the shaping of an inclusive, anti-oppressive education.

Author Biography

Jan Sverre Knudsen, Oslo Metropolitan University

Professor of music. Department of Early Childhood Education, Faculty of Teacher Education, Oslo Metropolitan University.




How to Cite

Knudsen, J. S. (2021). Arts for Children, Cultural Diversity and the Production of Difference. Nordic Journal of Art & Research, 10(2).