Ashley Lauren Sullivan

Ashley Lauren Sullivan is an Assistant Professor of Early Childhood Education at Penn State Erie, the Behrend College. She currently teaches courses about play, parental involvement, issues in American education, gender and sexuality, and education theory. Her research focuses on young transgender children in early childhood education, children’s literature containing transgender characters, children in poverty, and reconceputalist methodologies. Her chapter, “Kindergartners Studying Trans* Issues Through I Am Jazz,” was included in the award-winning text, Teaching, Affirming, and Recognizing Trans and Gender Creative Youth: A Queer Literacy Framework. This book won the 2017 AERA Division K (Teaching and Teacher Education) Exemplary Research Award and the 2018 Outstanding Book by the Michigan Council Teachers of English (among other accolades). Ashley’s work has also appeared in the Bank Street College of Education Occasional Paper Series and the Journal of Poverty. Her book chapter (co-authored with Laurie Urraro), “The Hegemony of Transition and Transgender Counternarratives in Children’s Picture Books” will appear in the upcoming volume, Disruptive Views of Gender and Sexuality in K12 and Teacher Education. Ashley’s newest book, coauthored with Laurie Urraro, is titled Voices of Children in Early Childhood Education: Reflections on Resistance and Resiliency. The anticipated publication date is 2019.

Books by Ashley Lauren Sullivan:

Introducing Critical Childhood Perspectives
Reconceptualist Thought, Diversity, and Social Justice Expectations

As part of a larger education movement some scholars in early childhood education have engaged in work that challenges universal constructions of "child". This scholarship is labeled reconceptualist/critical and place at the forefront: concern for diversity; improving conditions for those who have been traditionally marginalized; and understanding of power structures and impositions that generate harm and privilege. This volume explores these issues in a manner that is accessible to those new to the field. Each chapter provides a thorough discussion of one of the earliest forms of scholarship that addresses: cultural and life diversity; challenges to monocultural science; dominant narratives in the field; linguistically marginalized children; adult power; problematizing deficit models; responding to children; rejecting universalist construction; and creating new possibilities for those have been labeled "children". Further, the book provides annotated bibliographies that glimpse into the shifting landscape for childhood education and care.

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