The micropolitics of posthuman early years leadership assemblages: exploring more-than-human relationality

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Engaging with posthuman theorising this article puts to work a number of concepts to produce generative re-imaginings of Early Years Leadership. In 1992 Deleuze argued that we are witnessing a transition from societies of confinement to 'societies of control'. In societies of control power operates through neoliberal corporate worlds via a process of 'continuous modulation' which encourages a regime of perpetual flows of change revealing new productions of a more posthuman agency. Drawing on the work of Deleuze and Guattari (1987) I note how the concept of assemblage can be employed to explore leadership. I argue that Early Years Leadership in England is part of a wider set of connections and relations which include human and non-human ‘bodies’. The assemblage connects and collects bodies and is not defined by its individual components but by what is produced as these bodies interact. These interactions can be striated which explores certain forms of leadership, however smoother spaces can also be produced which empirically reveals the situational ethics and micro-politics of four early years leaders who are entangled with children, policy, neoliberal framing, quality, curriculum, social and material worlds in their settings and schools. This article broadens current views on Early Years Leadership by taking a more-than-human view of relations between human and non-human bodies as a distributed subjectivity which reworks notions of solely human agency. This production will allow me to question how posthuman leadership and the ethics and micro-politics of connectivity might function in this new form of more-than-human relationality.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)53–64
Number of pages12
JournalContemporary Issues in Early Childhood
Issue number1
Early online date27 Aug 2018
Publication statusPublished - 31 Mar 2019


  • Posthuman leadership
  • assemblage
  • relationality
  • distributed subjectivity
  • micropolitics


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