chapter  7
12 Pages

‘The family who eats together stays together’

Governing families, governing health, governing pedagogies
ByJo Pike, Deana Leahy

This chapter has attempted to review some of ways in which family meal is constructed by a selection of pedagogical resources used to promote healthy eating in schools in Australia. It suggests that pedagogical strategies and devices reinforce idealised notions of families that overlook complexities, tensions and power dynamics of intergenerational encounters and furthermore that strategies pedagogicalize families in new ways. Children never talk to their parents, they don't have a time when they sit down and discuss everything. It's one of the causes of parent's dysfunctional society, a reason why children behave so badly. However, as many have pointed out, idea of the family meal, conceived of as a heterosexual nuclear family sitting and eating an evening meal together around a table is a relatively recent invention. The championing of the family meal as the preferred mode of dining constitutes a new line of force that traverses school dining rooms, classrooms bringing family pedagogies closer in' than ever before.