Dining with Michel Serres: physical education and an ethics of the parasite
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Original versionSport, Education and Society. 2023, . 10.1080/13573322.2023.2235612
Presented as a six-course meal, this article addresses the ethics of innovations, interruptions, and intrusions in physical education (PE). The central ingredient in this meal is Michel Serres’ character-concept of the parasite. We begin by interpreting debates about PE’s purposes, futures, beneficiaries, and so on, as offering researchers and practitioners food-for-thought about the status quo in PE and its transformation. We then introduce the tastes and textures of the parasite and explore these flavours further using PE research on outsourcing and the use of healthy lifestyle technologies. In the main course, we propose a situated and symbiotic parasitic ethics grounded in hesitation and discuss what this set of sensitivities offers debates in PE about outsourcing and healthy lifestyle technology-use. Recognising there will never be a PE without parasites, we advocate an attunement to what it is to parasite well in PE and to the role of the parasite in the composition of any PE collective.