27 SES 07 A JS, Gender and Subject Didactics: What do we gain in addressing gender issues at the micro-level of didactical Interactions? Part 1
Joint Symposium NW 27 and NW 33 to be continued in 27 SES 08 A JS
This paper provides an introduction to the symposium. It first highlights that European didactics research did not pay much attention to gender issues before the 2000s (Schneuwly, 2015). To a certain extent, didactic research could be seen as gender-blind research whereas gender studies increased in the other fields of educational research. However, these works tend to ignore the potentially transformative role of disciplinary knowledge, being thus somewhat content-blind research (Amade-Escot, forthcoming). Then, relying on Young’s idea that ‘knowledge should be an entitlement to all children’ (2014), the paper points out that any subject didactics, when investigating gender in classroom, aims at studying the possibility and the constraints of gender sensitive pedagogies. In that line, French and Swedish didactic research investigated how gendered knowledge is enacted in the classroom. The discussion of their distinctive contribution is the focus of this double symposium. Both didactical approaches consider that boys and girls are physically and discursively produced to be differently literate according to various school subjects. Both delve into how subject specific knowledge impacts, through teaching practices, students’ knowledge construction. While their conceptual frameworks differ, both tackle common purposes: - Within the ‘joint action in didactics’ framework, French didactics investigates the gendered knowledge constructions through didactical transactions using the concepts of ‘gender positioning’ and ‘differential didactic contract’. It describes the dynamics of unequal gendered learning that are very specific to the knowledge intended to be taught, and the conditions in which girls and boys can be involved in didactical contexts that allow them to acquire empowering knowledge and know-how while deconstructing traditional gender norms. - Within the Foucaldian framework of governance, Swedish didactics explores how relations between knowledge and power are vivid in classrooms and how disciplinary knowledge and knowledge-making are constituted in teacher–student interactions. It points out how teachers communicate what counts as (ir)relevant knowledge or (ir)relevant ways of acquiring knowledge and thus contribute to the exclusion of certain knowledge and gendered ways of knowing, as well as the normalisation of gendered power relations and heteronormativity. From a comparative perspective (Ligozat & al., 2015; Östman & al., 2015) the questions this symposium addresses are: What is the respective contribution of French and Swedish didactics when investigating didactical interactions with a gender lens? To what extent they shed new lights on gendered knowledge constructions? How these works enhance comparative works across subject didactics to further on gender equality issues?
Amade-Escot, C. (2018, Forthcoming). Gender Positioning: an Analytical Concept to (Re)Consider Classroom Practices within the French Didactique Research Tradition. In C. A. Taylor, C. Amade-Escot & A. Abbas (Eds.). Gender in Learning and Teaching: Feminist Dialogues across International Boundaries. London: Routledge, Francis and Taylor. Ligozat, F., Amade-Escot, C. & Östman, L. (2015). Beyond Subject Specific Approaches of Teaching and Learning: Comparative Didactics. Interchange: A Quarterly Review of Education, 46(4), 313-321. Östman, L., Öhman, M., Lundqvist, E. & Lidar, M. (2015). Teaching, learning and governance in science education and physical education: A comparative approach. Interchange: A Quarterly Review of Education, 46(4). 369-386. Schneuwly, B. (2015). La didactique des disciplines peut-elle intégrer les questions de genre. Conférence d’ouverture. In Centre Hubertine Auclert, Actes du colloque « Genre, didactique et formation » (pp. 2-6). Créteil : ESPE de l’Académie Créteil, 8-9 avril. Young, M. (2014). The curriculum and the entitlement of knowledge. Paper presented at a seminar organised by Cambridge Assessment Network Magdalene College, Cambridge.
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