Discursive construction of hegemonic masculinity and emphasised femininity in the textbooks of primary education: children’s discursive agency and polysemy of the narratives
Kostas, M. 2019. Discursive construction of hegemonic masculinity and emphasised femininity in the textbooks of primary education: children’s discursive agency and polysemy of the narratives. Gender and Education. 33 (1), pp. 50-67. https://doi.org/10.1080/09540253.2019.1632807
Gender-normative discursive representations in textbooks could have deleterious impacts on pupils’ gender identity development.
This study sets out to explore the discursive construction of femininity and masculinity in anthology textbooks for primary education and scrutinize children’s sense-making of gender-normative discourses. Grounded in a poststructuralist theorization of gender and Connell’s [(1995). Masculinities. Oxford: Blackwell] theory of masculinities, this qualitative study employs a Feminist Critical Discourse Analysis (FCDA) to explore the discursive positioning of femininity and masculinity in school manuals. Additionally, semi-structured group interviews were conducted in two Athenian elementary schools with 40 boys and 40 girls, aged 8–10 years old.
The findings revealed that, in addition to androcentrism, textbooks were overwhelmingly defined by emphasized femininity and hegemonic masculinity discourses. Analyses of pupils’ accounts demonstrated that the children negotiated normative discourses in idiosyncratic ways, and that boys were less prepared than girls to subvert the anachronistic discourses of gender promoted by textbooks. It was also found that the mother’s employment status may exert a broadening influence on pupils’ understanding of gender.
|Keywords||Education; Gender studies; School textbooks|
|Journal||Gender and Education|
|Journal citation||33 (1), pp. 50-67|
|Publisher||Taylor & Francis|
|Digital Object Identifier (DOI)||https://doi.org/10.1080/09540253.2019.1632807|
|Online||20 Jun 2019|
|02 Jan 2021|
|Publication process dates|
|Deposited||21 Jun 2019|
|Accepted||11 Jun 2019|
|Accepted author manuscript|
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