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ABSTRACT. Doctoral supervision is positioned somewhat polyvalently in the new knowledge economy, requiring supervisors to engage, sometimes simultaneously, with an ethic of fidelity, an ethic of care, and an ethic of cultural sensitivity and respect. This multiple positioning creates particular ethical tensions that become apparent when viewed through an embodied lens. In this paper I reflect on a closed online discussion of the challenges in supervising ethically, and consider how it might be possible to negotiate amongst, or beyond, these conflicting ethical perspectives. I draw on the concept of embodied ethics to show how the supervisory body erupts or intrudes into the normative ethical discourses of the academy. Three discourses of embodiment (Evans, Davies, and Rich, 2009) are used as lenses to identify the ethical positions available in our discussion. In this I hope to contribute to on-going discussions about the role of the body in ethical supervision, the risky location of the supervisory body in neoliberal discourses, and the importance of reflexively rethinking the ethical implications of the new knowledge economy. pp. 81–101

Keywords: doctoral supervision; ethics; embodiment; discourse; higher education

SUE CORNFORTH
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Victoria University of Wellington

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