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The Politics of Nursing Knowledge and Education

Critical Pedagogy in the Face of the Militarization of Nursing in the War on Terror

Perron, Amélie, PhD, RN; Rudge, Trudy, PhD, RN, RMHN; Blais, Anne-Marie, RN; Holmes, Dave, PhD, RN

doi: 10.1097/ANS.0b013e3181e093bc
Emancipatory Scholarship

This article critically examines the incursion of the military in nursing education, practice, and knowledge production. New funding programs, journals, and degrees in (bio)terrorism, emergency preparedness, and disaster management create a context of uncertainty, fear, and crisis, and nursing is portrayed as ideally positioned to protect the wider public from adverse (health-related) events, despite important ontological, epistemological, and ethical considerations. In this article, we discuss implications for nursing education and knowledge production. We posit that a critical pedagogy framework promotes critical reflection, resistance, and a renewed sense of agency not dependent upon external organizations such as the military, intelligence agencies and public health surveillance organizations.

School of Nursing, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada (Drs Perron and Holmes and Ms Blais); and Faculty of Nursing and Midwifery, University of Sydney, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia (Dr Rudge).

Corresponding Author: Amélie Perron, PhD, RN, School of Nursing, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Ottawa, 451, Smyth Rd, Ottawa, ON K1H 8M5, Canada (

© 2010 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.