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Dis/Locating gendered readings : moving towards a critical pedagogy of estrangement


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Hiller, C 1998 , 'Dis/Locating gendered readings : moving towards a critical pedagogy of estrangement', PhD thesis, University of Tasmania.

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This thesis `Dis/Locating Gendered Readings: Moving Towards a Critical Pedagogy
of Estrangement' investigates the interaction of students, teachers and narrative
texts in a Grade 9 English classroom and explores processes of gendered subject
production through pedagogical practices. The main focus is student and teacher
responses to three narrative texts Peter (Walker, 1991), Looking for Alibrandi
(Marchetta, 1992) and Dougy (Moloney, 1993) and resulting gendered differences in
discursive positioning. The main aim is to identify the dominant discourses of both
students and teachers with the view to interrogating them for the implications for
current literary pedagogy and gendered positioning.
The research is ethnographic focusing in particular on the discourses taken up by
students and teachers in response to narrative texts. Drawing on a range of
theoretical and methodological perspectives — pedagogy, feminist theory and
discourse analysis — this thesis argues that classrooms are sites of multiple and
competing discourses: the discourses already available to the students, the
pedagogical discourses of the teachers, and the discursive positionings made
available by narrative texts used as part of the pedagogy.
The dominant discursive positions available to students are identified using a
grounded theory approach and elaborated through discourse analysis of classroom
transcripts of talk. The pedagogical discourses used by the teachers are also
identified and analysed in consultation with the teachers involved as part of the
emancipatory intention. This thesis offers a critical discussion of these dominant
pedagogical discourses in relation to reading and textual analysis with the view to
elaborating an alternative pedagogy which offers a more productive field for
feminist classroom textual practices.
The discourses taken up by the students situate them in different ways which
reflect wider discursive positionings, both within the classroom discussion of
narrative texts and more widely. This thesis investigates the consequences of the
differences produced by current pedagogical practices and the potential for
pedagogical change. It argues that current pedagogies of literary teaching reproduce
binary structuring of gendered subjectivities, which situate students differently
and unequally. It moves towards the elaboration of an emancipatory pedagogy
which makes transparent essentialist categories and opens emancipatory spaces for
both teachers and students.

Item Type: Thesis - PhD
Authors/Creators:Hiller, C
Keywords: Sex role in literature, Sex role in education
Copyright Information:

Copyright 1998 the Author

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