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"Boys will be boys": What do early childhood teachers have to do with it?

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Abstract

This paper focuses on the ways in which a selected group of early childhood teachers in grades one and two, located in a predominantly white middle‐class context in Durban, South Africa ascribe meaning to young boys they teach. The study finds that early childhood teachers are bearers of masculinity and incorporate taken‐for‐granted assumptions of boys' behaviour into their understandings of gender, leading to boys' visibility not only in terms of unequal power relations but also in negatively inscribing boys as disruptive. Further the paper provides evidence which shows how race and class have forged particular conceptions of male hegemony which lead to the teachers' investment in a “rugger bugger” masculinity. It is argued that early childhood teachers' investments in hegemonic masculinity are restrictive and work against equality for both boys and girls in early childhood. In this regard the paper signifies the need to address masculinities in the early years of South African primary schooling.

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... The concept of hegemonic masculinity has been applied across research and practice when theorising trends and patterns related to men and boys. Within education the concept of hegemony has been used to explore hierarchies of masculinities in schools, as well as boys' aspirations and participation in post-16 studies (Archer et al., 2014;Bhana, 2009;Swain, 2006). ...
... Parents associate anger more readily with boys and sadness and happiness with girls, although variation has been shown across ethnicity and parent gender (Brown et al., 2015;Van Der Pol et al., 2015). Similarly, teachers draw on gendered discourses and in doing so reproduce gender inequalities (Bhana, 2009). Gender appears to be significant in how teachers perceive and talk about children's emotional and behavioural expression (Mc Keon, 2017). ...
... Traditional discourses of masculinity were evident in both the teacher and pupil accounts of boys' behaviour, although adopted in contradictory ways. Teacher discourses reflected concerns regarding a "crisis" relating to challenging behaviour amongst boys, positioning boys as "lads" and their behaviour as "laddish", suggesting that "boys will be boys" (Bhana, 2009;Epstein et al., 1998;Willis, 1977): ...
Article
Despite the widespread concern regarding young people’s wellbeing, the interaction between gender and mental health appears to be generally overlooked within education and is more commonly focused on concern about rising figures of female mental health. The absence of discussions around gender is surprising, given the ongoing debate regarding the impact of masculinity on men’s emotional expression and the increasing encouragement for men to talk more openly about their mental health. The paper will present a small-scale study that explored how boys’ behavioural and mental health difficulties are constructed in the discourses employed by teachers and boys themselves. The findings highlight the complexity of discourses around boys’ behaviour and mental health which are inextricably tied to constructions of masculinity. This paper will critically consider these findings within the wider debate about masculinity and emotionality, before considering implications for boys in schools and for educational practitioners.
... Genusperspektiv på förskolan I studier av könande i förskolan har forskare under åren använt lite olika perspektiv, exempelvis socialkonstruktionism, feministisk poststrukturalism, postkolonialism, queer teori och posthumanism/nymaterialism (Blaise, 2014). I flertalet studier undersöks hur kön skapas i förskolans mellanmänskliga relationer tillsammans med normer om vad som anses vara kvinnligt och manligt respektive normer rörande heteronormativitet (Bhana, 2009;Blaise, 2005;Davies, 1989;Dolk, 2009;Eidevald, 2009;Frödén, 2019;Hellman, 2010;Madrid & Kantor, 2009;Månsson, 2000;Odenbring, 2010). I dessa studier är etnografiska metoder vanliga. ...
... I dessa studier är etnografiska metoder vanliga. Resultat som framkommit är bland annat att flickor och pojkar uppfattas och behandlas på olika sätt och ses som två separata grupper av lärare i förskolan, trots att de gör samma saker och intar samma positioner (Bhana, 2009;Eidevald, 2009;Månsson, 2000) samt att pedagoger könar barn genom att använda olika språkliga uttryck till flickor och pojkar (Burdelski & Mitsuhashi, 2010). Förutom att undersöka hur könande pågår i förskolan har även studier genomförts i syfte att omtänka och dekonstruera förgivettagna föreställningar om kön. ...
... Så länge jämställdhetsarbete lämnas till att formuleras som en pedagogisk fråga, menar jag att det finns en risk att det främst relateras till områden som rör sociala relationer och att det inte aktivt implementeras i relation till barns utforskande av och tillsammans med olika ämnesinnehåll. Detta syns även inom forskningen då det än så länge varit vanligare att undersöka könande i förskolan med fokus på mellanmänskliga relationer eller barns relationer med förskolans miljö, snarare än ämnesinnehåll (se exempelvis Bhana, 2009;Blaise, 2005;Davies, 1989;Dolk, 2009;Eidevald, 2009;Frödén, 2019;Hellman, 2010;Lyttleton-Smith, 2019;Madrid & Kantor, 2009;Månsson, 2000;Odenbring, 2010;Renold & Mellor, 2013). Att explicit skriva fram att jämställdhetsarbete även ska genomföras på en ämnesdidaktisk nivå skulle därmed ge förskolans pedagoger en tydligare riktning att detta är ett arbete som även innefattar barns utforskande, ämnesinnehåll och undervisningen överlag. ...
Thesis
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The aim of this thesis is to explore how scientific phenomena, together with other agents (human and nonhuman) in preschool, participate in and co-create gendering processes as well as children’s emergent scientific explorations. These are seen as mutual processes emerging in the daily doings and routines in preschool. As a theoretical and methodological foundation, a new materialist perspective drawing on Karen Barad’s (2007) theory of agential realism and diffractive methodology were used, as well as de Freitas and Palmer’s (2016) notion concerning how scientific concepts can work as creative playmates in children’s explorations. The thesis includes four papers that build on data conducted during a field study in a Swedish preschool, together with 25 five year-old children and three teachers. Participant observations, including video recordings and field notes were made over a period of 5 months. The results show that, if and how children get to engage with emergent science is linked to if and how they manage to occupy space and co-act with different materials. As the children were co-acting with different materials, scientific phenomena could make themselves known and intelligible to the children. This means that becoming scientific is something that is enabled in entanglements. One important result connected to this is that these entanglements can include ways and agents not commonly thought of as “scientific”, such as a drawing table, hearts, and feminine discourses. Another result is that even though girls and boys explore together within the same activity, this does not automatically lead to a situation that is more equal. From these results I discuss how children’s emergent scientific explorations are always part of larger, gendered processes. I also discuss the importance to highlight how science in preschool can be “done” in various ways. Otherwise there is a risk that the false picture could be created that some children, already at preschool age, are more “suitable” for science, while others are created as “less suitable”, just as can occur in school and higher education. Furthermore, during the discussion I show how scientific phenomena can work as tools for teachers to approach gendering processes together with.
... The school as a social arena where gender meanings are constructed and contested has led to focus on the role that schools play in reinforcing/ challenging gender inequality (Bhana, 2003(Bhana, , 2008(Bhana, , 2009Anderson, 2008). ...
... This contributes to critical men's studies' advocacy for constructions of gender as plural and fluid human qualities (Lindegger and Maxwell, 2009;Kimmel, 2006). The article also aligns with the findings of other research (Bhana, 2009;Bhana & Epstein, 2007;Renold, 2003;Skelton, 2001;Swain, 2006) that primary schooling is not a gender free zone. Teachers' constructions denoted the primacy of gender as an organising matrix in the primary schools, which included the ascendancy of hegemonic masculinities (Connell, 1995) above other types of masculinities and femininities. ...
Article
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This paper gives prominence to rural teachers’ own accounts of gender in three co-educational primary schools in Lesotho. The paper employs the social constructionist paradigm as its theoretical framework. Drawing from ethnographic data (observations and informal discussions), it discusses factors that inform teachers’ constructions of gender and the implications of these on gender in/equality in the schools. Twelve teachers’ (male = 1; female = 11) participated in the study. Analysis denotes how teachers constructed masculinities and femininities as inherent gender qualities, and the role of Basotho culture, language and its discourse in promoting gender inequalities. The conclusion provides strategies that would strengthen teachers’ ability to promote gender equality in schools.
... In "Boys will be boys: what do early childhood teachers have to do with it?", Bhana (2009) analyses several interviews with South African early childhood teachers, where it is found that hegemonic masculinity is promoted from an early age, based on stereotypical gender roles. She highlights the role that teachers play in promoting the boys will be boys mentality among their students, through an analysis of the interviews conducted with four South African teachers. ...
... On account of their boys will be boys approach to education and life in general, they "set" what boys must be at an early age, in order to be "real" men later. In any case, they firmly believe that males are so wired Bhana (2009) urges South African teachers to challenge these dominant forms of masculinity that they themselves take for granted, in order to deconstruct male power and thus help fight the violence, rape, and an unsafe environment as a whole that boys will be boys and "rugger bugger mentality" foster, with the prime victims being females and "non-conforming" males. ...
Article
Boys will be boys encapsulates most of what is wrong with patriarchy, hegemonic masculinity, gender roles, victimisation of females, and the gender binary, all of which play crucial roles in the continued subjugation and oppression of females in our society. Although most general English dictionaries provide a definition for this expression, this paper will demonstrate how they mischaracterise it, and therefore legitimise the repressive, destructive, and violent manifestations of this cultural mindset. After a brief review of the literature, the paraphrases of meaning that several popular dictionaries provide for this expression will be scrutinised. These will be contrasted with a bias-free and inclusive paraphrase of meaning, to be followed by a discussion and conclusions This paper is based on content from my doctoral dissertation, Kaplan (2020). .
... As James, Jenks and Prout (1998) have long advocated, children are active social agents who shape the structures and processes around them, and whose social relationships are worthy of study in their own right. Bhana (2009) and Morojele (2011) have also illustrated the active roles that young children play in constructing and contesting their social identities. This conceptualisation of children as active social beings who exercise agency in aspects relating to their lives draws on the ideas of developmental psychology, which, influenced by the work of Lev Vygotsky and Jerome Bruner, has shifted in recent years from a view of the child as an active, but isolated agent to an emphasis on the child as an active social being (Bruner and Haste, 1987). ...
... The data illustrates how children drew on dominant discourses of gender in these rural contexts to navigate their school journey. Despite the findings, for example by Morojele (2011) and Bhana (2009) that depict degraded gender relations between article Figure 4. Photovoice image of the journey through the forest boys and girls within the primary schooling context, the findings of this study show that children resourcefully utilised dominant discourses of gender for mutual beneficiation of both girls and boys. In light of the dangers of the journey they face going to school, girls and boys developed a sense of solidarity and common purpose, which transcended contestations over masculinities and femininities. ...
Article
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This Article provides a critical analysis of the role of gender and sexuality in children's navigation of treacherous school journey terrains in one Lesotho rural primary school. It draws on data generated with 12 children (male = 6; female = 6) who travelled an average distance of 10–15 km to and from school every day. The study employed creative participatory and visual research methodology (for instance, route mapping, diamond ranking and photographic technique) to document the challenges that the children experienced as they traversed the treacherous terrains of their school journey. The findings denote how children resourcefully exploited the dominant discourses of gender and sexuality to mitigate the dangers of passing through dense forests with herd boys, muthi murderers and Basotho traditional circumcision initiates. Children's agency in navigating these obstacles and (albeit life-threatening) challenges included travelling in protective gender-based groupings, getting involved in heterosexual walking relationships and creatively harnessing the dominant homophobic discourses in these contexts in their favour. By foregrounding how gender and sexuality featured as a resource and recourse in how children navigated their school journey, the Article challenges the dominant discourses that view children as immature, sexually innocent (or asexual) and unable to determine their lives. It provides insights into why actively involving children in matters that affect their lives and foregrounding gender and children's sexuality could become a potential catalyst for policy and social action aimed at improving the schooling experiences of rural children.
... She argues that the measurement of empowerment must take the three interrelated, indivisible constructs into account. Her conceptualization is characteristic of the GAD scholars' recurrent 1 See, for example, masculinities work in South Africa including Bhana ( 2009 ), Bhana and Pattman ( 2011 ), and Morrell et al., ( 2012 ). interest in the interplay between macro-level structures and individual and collective agency. ...
Chapter
TThis chapter introduces several influential perspectives on gender within the field of Comparative and International Education from the last fifty years. We draw on Unterhalter’s (2007) observation that the term ‘gender’ has been variously used as a noun, adjective, and verb in the field of CIE and the closely related field of international development. Even as gender continues to be used all three ways, each usage – each part of speech – can be seen as corresponding to the development of different theoretical paradigms at the nexus of gender, education, and development, whereby WID and WAD scholars treat gender as a noun, GAD scholars view it as an adjective, and various post-scholars conceptualize it as a verb. We employ this grammatical framework to examine these approaches to gender in the hopes of historicizing and enlivening their contributions within the field of CIE.
... Access to water and its use are crucial for women because of their predominance in domestic labour but their minority social status in these societies and subservience make women particularly susceptible to most problems associated with water scarcity. (Bhana, 2009;Morojele, 2011). In addition to other household chores, the participation of women in education, income-generating activities, as well as in cultural and political engagements is often compromised (Panda, 2007). ...
Article
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Abstract Water is integral to sustainable rural livelihoods and household food security due to its key role in household use, small-scale and homestead farming. Water security is an emerging concept, having gained increasing attention over the past five years. The World Economic Forum describes water security as "the gossamer" linking global economic challenges such as: the systemic web of food, energy, climate, economic growth and human security livelihoods in rural areas are at risk due to poor access and supply of water, and resource limitation and degradation. The role of indigenous and local knowledge in navigating livelihood options was explored through a Sustainable Livelihood Analysis (SLA) among three purposefully selected, rural, female farmer groups to elicit the role of water in agriculture and rural livelihoods. Complimentary to the SLA, a household water audit was conducted to assess water supply, water availability and associated challenges. Face-to-face interviews were conducted with willing irrigation scheme members. Key informant interviews were held with officials from district municipalities, extension officers and the Departments of Water Affairs. Water Policy Analysis (WPA) was conducted for pronunciations and impact on water access, governance, organizational structures and institutional arrangements. Content Analysis and SLA were adopted as the main data analysis tools. Key findings indicate knowledge gaps in policy and implementation and a lack of understanding of water management structures. Discourse between the transformation agenda of water reform and rural lifestyles, thus elicited gender tensions among study participants. These complex issues resulted in poor livelihoods for participants, who experience poor water access for current and future water use. Competition for the water supply, coupled with climate change was also identified as a serious threat due to expanding mining operations in the Limpopo Province. The study concludes that water use management and water policy reform intentions require robust investments in the capacity building of small-scale farmers in rural areas to improve access to water and its management.
... Some researchers claim that children at an early age learn what it means to act as a boy or a girl, and are quick to demonstrate that they understand these roles (Laemmle, 2013). This involves early segregation between boys and girls and maintains the discourses of gender difference (Bhana, 2009). Also, schools play an important role in contributing to a traditional dichotomy between boys and girls, as we found that many monitoring teachers performed according to a traditional gender role during recess, reinforcing stereotypes. ...
Article
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Boys are more physically active than girls and the greatest gender difference in children’s physical activity is found in institutional settings such as school recess. However, research on gender relations, performances and practices that maintain gendered differences in physical activity during recess is still limited. Drawing on a qualitative dataset and a social constructivist gender view, the aim of this study was to investigate how construction of gendered activity patterns and social positions in the schoolyard lead to gendered practices in self-organized play during recess. At 17 Danish schools a total of 460 minutes of recess were observed and 17 go-along group interviews (one at each school), including in total 111 fourth graders (58 girls), were conducted. We found six gender typologies with varying behaviours, needs and power relations. The majority of children were prejudiced in their play, reinforcing gender binarism with boys being more physically active than girls. However, we also found groups such as soccer-playing girls and sedentary computer gaming boys who defied the gender stereotypes. These groups felt limited in their activities because of a hierarchy where not being skilled and sporty implied a lesser status in the hegemonic masculinity and even exclusion from play. More detailed research into what is required for particularly the least active groups is needed to successfully increase both the girls’ and overall physical activity levels.
... While girls were viewed on the other end of the spectrum, namely less competitive, less logical, and less independent as a few examples. Teachers may unknowingly incorporate personal gender assumptions and biases, those typically embedded in society, into the classroom through verbal and non-verbal cues, thus producing and reproducing the notion of male dominance (Bhana, 2009;Pardhan, 2011). Such implicit mechanisms, for instance that boys possess higher mathematical abilities than girls (Tiedemann, 2000), may encourage boys to be more visible within mathematical practices in the classroom, rendering girls mathematically invisible (Pardhan, 2011). ...
Article
The purpose of this study is to examine how teachers might engage in mathematical talk differently with boys and girls within an early childhood classroom setting; therefore, possibly building and maintaining the stereotype of mathematics as a male domain. Utilizing a multi-model approach, results suggests minimal differences in the extent in which teachers in this study engaged in mathematical talk with girls and boys in class. However, any noted differences in mathematical talk and questions seem dependent upon the classroom contexts (i.e., whole-class, small group, and center time). Implications and future research will be discussed.
... Hegemonic masculinity is the cultural expression of the dominant form of masculinity that regulates and subordinates other forms of masculinity and femininity. Although hegemonic masculinity has been critiqued widely (Beasley, 2008), it has been productive in illuminating gender hierarchies and how male domination occurs in children's play (Connolly, 2004;Bhana, 2009;Davis and MacNaughton, 2009). ...
Chapter
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... In South Africa, the Millennium Development Goals "find particular resonance in almost all legislative and policy imperatives starting with the Constitution and education policies, which all place emphasis on equity, social justice, freedom, peace and hope" (Mahlomaholo 2011: 313). However, research in sub-Saharan Africa has found that despite governments' policies to improve gender equality, boys and girls in learning environments continue to be socialised into gender roles and values which reinforce gender inequality (Bhana 2009;Mahlomaholo 2010;Morojele 2010). The dominant discourses of gender continue to give ascendancy to types of masculinities and femininities in ways that uphold inequitable gender relations. ...
Article
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This article focuses the battle for sustainable gender equitable learning environments on discourse as social communication. Based on a critical review of feminist research and critical men’s studies, the article foregrounds the of discourse in gendered social relations, and what this implies for sustainable gender equitable learning environments. A sociological theory of social constructionism is used to highlight the role of discourse in communicating and shaping gender values and meanings. The gender-discourse nexus is discussed to illuminate insights into the intimate fellowship between these variables. The article points to complex relationships between gender, discourse and hegemony, and how these function in tandem to perpetuate the status quo of gender inequalities. Power is found to induce submission, which enables the scheme of gender inequalities to operate below the radar (or otherwise appear normal or trivial) and thus unworthy to protest against them. Strategies offered include deconstructing power relations between various gender discourses, and between learning institutions and those whom they serve. This would entail curricula revision in order to walk-the-talk of affirming and supporting girls and boys to have not only the equal rights of liberalism but also an equal right to flourish as human beings, as a principle for sustainable gender equitable learning environments.
... The strongest predictor of poorer mental health at preschool was being male, in line with previous evidence around child mental health. [35,36] There is evidence to suggest that a reporting bias in both teachers and parents whereby problems in boys are over-reported due to an overly negative view of boys' behaviour [37]. In addition, being in a more affluent area was associated with having lower levels of mental health difficulties, whilst having been under the supervision of the state ('Looked After') was associated with having higher levels of difficulties, both findings in line with previous reports [38]. ...
Article
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Background The Triple P parenting programme has been reported to improve child mental health at population level, but it consumes substantial resources. Previous published work has suggested improvements in whole population scores in the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ) Total Difficulties Scale among samples of children following introduction of the programme. This paper aims to explore whether Triple P had an impact on child mental health problems using routinely collected data over 6 years before and during the implementation of the multilevel Triple P programme in Glasgow City. Methods Annual monitoring of teacher-rated SDQ Total Difficulties Scale scores among children in their pre-school year in Glasgow City. ResultsNo significant or consistent changes in SDQ Total Difficulties Scale scores were seen during or after the implementation of Triple P programme on a whole population level. Conclusion Triple P in Glasgow City appears to have had no impact on early child mental health problems over a 6 year period. The Triple P programme, implemented on a whole population level, is unlikely to produce measurable benefits in terms of child mental health.
... Gender discrimination is rooted in history, tradition and culture (Rosenberg 2001). Research in sub-Saharan Africa has found that despite legislation and policies to improve gender equality, socialisation into gender roles and values reinforce gender inequality (Bhana 2009;Mahlomaholo 2010;Morojele 2010). The dominant discourses of gender continue to give dominance to types of masculinities and femininities in ways that 'uphold inequitable gender relations and reinforce patriarchy' (Morojele 2012:82). ...
Article
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There is little contention that gender equity continues to be a challenge in many societies across the Southern African region. Dominant discourses that perpetuate inequality are often reflected in school materials such as textbooks, which have the potential to socialise girls and boys into particular gender performances. The aim of the study being reported on was to examine representations of gender in a sample of Business Studies school textbooks. The textbooks were selected from four Southern African countries: Swaziland, Lesotho, Zimbabwe and South Africa. The study employed a sociolinguistic analytical framework, namely critical discourse analysis and was guided by the tenets of feminist poststructuralism in the analysis of this phenomenon. The findings of the study reveal superficial content changes in the texts under study. Gendered ideologies continue to prevail in a remarkably overt fashion. One key finding was at a semantic level, namely the mention of the male pronoun first in sentences and conversation and not the female pronoun, having the likely effect of endorsing the principle of the ‘firstness’ and superiority of the masculine. In the order of two words paired for sex such as ‘Mr and Mrs’, ‘brother and sister’ and ‘husband and wife’, the masculine word came first. This automatic ordering is likely to reinforce the second-place status of women. The article concludes with a discussion on the implications of these findings for pedagogy and the textbook publishing industry. The findings also have the potential to ignite debate, as it relates to re-imagining the programmatic curriculum (school textbooks) as a contested genre.
... This also raises the questions about teacher expectations being different for both genders. Boys are taken for granted for being inattentive and destructive and this is argued by Bhana (2009) as male hegemony conception that leads teachers to believe in "rugger or mugger" boys. Teachers, who experience more conflicting relationship with boys, also give more disciplinary referrals to them (Saft & Pianta, 2001). ...
Article
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Teacher-child relationship is an important factor for the overall development of the child. It is also a reflector of child centred teaching practices, classroom quality and child outcomes. These relationships are influenced by many factors that are personal to teacher and child and are also related to the classroom environment. Positive teacher-child relationships develop warm and secure teacher-child bondings which are beneficial for the socioemotional and academic success of the child. Dependent and conflictual teacher-child relationships are stressful for teachers and have a negative outcome for the child. This paper explores the literature to recognise the factors affecting teacher-child relationships and have proposed a conceptual framework to understand these relationships in a ethnically and socioeconomically diverse classrooms. Literature has tried to define these relationships according to the attachment theory or through bioecological model of development thus ignoring the role of culture as a major factor in formation of these relationships. This paper used Bourdiue’s theory of Capital, Field and Habitus and Contextual System Model of Pianta as theoretical framework and proposes Cultural Framework for teacher-child relationships. Keywords: Teacher-child realtionships, culture, teacher factors, child factors, earlychildhood, cultural framework
... This also raises the questions about teacher expectations being different for both genders. Boys are taken for granted for being inattentive and destructive and this is argued by Bhana (2009) as male hegemony conception that leads teachers to believe in "rugger or mugger" boys. Teachers who experience more conflicting relationship with boys also give more disciplinary referrals to them (Saft & Pianta, 2001). ...
... Poikien sukupuolinormin mukaisiksi ruumiintapaisuuksiksi voi tutkimustiedon pohjalta luetella fyysiseen aggressiivisuuteen, kykyjen esittelyyn ja kilvoitteluun liittyvät tavat(Hasbrook & Harris 1999;Bhana 2009;Huuki 2010;Manninen 2010;Carrera- Fernández & Lameiras-Fernández & Rodríguez-Castro 2018), puhe-ja toimintatilan ot-taminen, aktiivisuus ja vastarinta (Naskali 2010, 285) feminiinisiksi miellettyjen tapojen, kuten intiimin läheisyyden ja hellän, hoivaavan kosketuksen jäädessä normin ulkopuo- lelle (Naskali 2010, 285; Paju 2013; Huuki & Sunnari 2015; Huuki 2019). Tytöillä suku- puolinormitettuja tapoja olivat esimerkiksi liioiteltu feminiinisyys eleissä, asennoissa ja liikkeissä (Blaise 2005), liikkumattomuus ja hauraus (Young 2005, 43-44), passiivisuus (Naskali 2010, 285) sekä hellä kosketus (Paju 2013). ...
Thesis
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Tämä tutkimus tarkastelee lasten toimintamahdollisuuksia päiväkodissa suhteessa sukupuolinormeihin. Tutkimus kohdentuu ruumiillisuuteen, kosketukseen ja lähellä oloon. Tarkasteltavana ovat lasten väliset tilanteet ja niihin voimia ja merkityksiä tuovat eri tasojen toimijat. Tutkimus käsittelee lasten toimintaa ja olemisen tapoja sukupuolinormien avulla ja tuo esille sukupuolinormeja mukailevaa, normirajoilla liikkuvaa tai näitä rajoja ylittävää toimintaa. Tutkimuksen aineisto on kerätty etnografisesti kevään 2019 aikana osallistumalla erään päiväkodin arkeen 23 aamupäivänä sekä ohjaamalla kolme pienryhmätuokiota. Aineisto koostuu havainnointimuistiinpanoista, pienryhmätuokioiden videoista, päiväkotiryhmän opettajan haastattelusta sekä ryhmän työntekijöiden tiimisopimuksesta. Analyysissa aineistoa lähestytään teoriasidonnaisesti. Analyysissa käytetään käsitteitä sukupuolitapaisuus, sukupuolinormi, sommitelma, todentuma, intra-aktio ja posthumanistinen performatiivisuus. Uusmaterialistisen teorian ja käsitteistön avulla analyysissa mahdollistuu tilanteiden tarkka lähiluku, jonka avulla erilaiset toimijuudet piirtyvät näkyviin. Analyysi tuo esiin myös lasten toimijuuden sekä ohjaavien asiakirjojen ja sopimusten merkitykset lasten eletyssä arjessa. Tutkimus tuo esille materiaalisten ja diskursiivisten toimijoiden merkityksiä lasten yksilöllisen toiminnan kannalta. Tyttöjen normirajoilla liikkuvat ja niitä ylittävät tapaisuudet olivat tytöille saavutettavissa monin tavoin arjen toimissa. Poikien normirajoja ylittävät tapaisuudet tarvitsivat enemmän tukea materiaalisilta toimijoilta ja olivat välillä piiloisempia. Hellä kosketus ja läheisyys kuuluivat kaikkien lasten arkeen, mutta niiden saavuttamisessa oli sukupuolisidonnaisia eroja. Työntekijät tunnistivat harvoin lasten sukupuolinormirajoja rikkovia kosketuksen ja lähellä olon tapoja. Lasten leikkien tukeminen ja ohjaaminen sekä toisin toimimisen tunnistaminen vaatisivat vielä lisää työtä varhaiskasvatuksen kentällä. Suuret ryhmäkoot, suhdelukujen ylitykset sekä haasteet varahenkilöstön saatavuudessa heikentävät mahdollisuuksia lasten yksilölliseen kohtaamiseen ja ohjaamiseen.
... The expectation and desire for the 'real man' image has an influence on how young learners taught by these men will perform their masculinities. The work of Bhana et al. (2009) and Bhana (2009) indicates that boy learners fear performing gender differently because they know they will be ridiculed for transgressing from the real man script. In turn, hegemonic masculinities as a collective have been theorised to contribute to gender-based violence in Africa (Gqola, 2007). ...
Article
The foundation phase of education in South Africa (Grades R to 3) is perceived as a space where women and sometimes gay men teach. This conceptualisation has been contested and debated, with more men being recruited. I sought to understand how men relate to homosexuality in these settings, in a period of increased gender-based violence in Africa. I used a case study methodology of nine men, teaching in rural schools in Mpumalanga province. The theoretical framing was informed by two feminist theories: the theory of masculinities and intersectionality. The data was generated using two sessions of interview-conversations. I found that men teaching in the foundation phase construct identities that proclaim they are not soft and feminine. They further distance themselves from a gay identity and homosexuality. Essentially, finding themselves in relegated positions of masculinity, they negotiate their identities by positioning themselves as superior to other men and women. The findings provide a basis for deeper conversations about the gender identity and attitudes of early primary educators, and their potential influence on increased gender based violence.
... This is evident particularly in areas that still have a patriarchal and hegemonic conceptualisation of what a man should be, look like, and how he should act. The underrepresentation of men leads to the assumption that when SGBs recommend employment in this educational phase, their decision is based on gender roles-care work is women's work (Bhana, 2009;Mashiya et al., 2015). ...
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Research on masculinity has become an important area of gender and education that includes a wide range of empirical concerns and theoretical approaches. This article identifies a number of studies that are asking questions about the conceptual usefulness of masculinity within educational contexts. The first section explores how educational researchers are beginning to suggest alternative ways that hegemonic masculinity may be configured. The second section draws upon work that interrogates the disconnection of gender from sex. Such work considers the importance of understanding schooling worlds through an untethering of gender categories from physical bodies. The third section suggests the possibility of a post-masculinity position by exploring research that questions the viability of masculinity as a conceptual frame to understand gender. In conclusion, the paper argues that such developments can be used heuristically to inform the critical reflexiveness of future research in the area.
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Despite possible negative effects, many children do not tell their teachers when they have been bullied. This study examined junior school pupils’ (N = 294) reports of instrumental, emotional and validation social support received after disclosing being bullied to teachers, and associations with intentions to disclose in the future. Overall, participants reported receiving modest to high levels of social support. The three social support variables accounted for a significant proportion (16.3%) of the variance in intentions to disclose. Each of them also emerged as significant non-unique predictors (i.e. not controlling for their shared variance), and validation social support did so even after controlling for the influence of the other two types. These effects were stronger for boys than for girls, and some varied by age. Findings are discussed in terms of outcome-expectancy theory and practical implications.
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The last decade has seen a growth in academic work on men and masculinity in Southern Africa. Inspired by a global trend, local studies have extended their range, empirical depth and analytical sophistication. The major consequence of this turn to the study of masculinities and men has been an enhanced understanding of gender relations in Southern Africa. Many gender scholars have welcomed the new theoretical and empirical work on men. But there have certainly been voices of caution and dissent, though thus far these have been somewhat muted. In her article Catriona Macleod expresses doubts about my approach to the study of men in South Africa. In this article I respond to her concerns. While my response indicates disagreement, I think Macleod's critique is important for the study of gender in Southern Africa because it promotes debate, allows the opportunity for the restatement of position and opens up a discussion on the link between academic work and politics. Macleod argues that my work is promoting, or could promote, a "phallocentric" agenda, and in so doing will harm feminist goals of ending the oppression and subordination of women. In opposing this argument I assert that the introduction of the concept masculinity/masculinities into the field of gender studies in South Africa has both extended and strengthened the analytical capacity of gender work and has contributed practically to the work of promoting gender equity.
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This paper presents elements of an ethnographic case study of a group of five male friends between the ages of six and eight years. The study sought to examine the ways in which the group's social dynamics interacted to define, regulate and maintain collective understandings of masculinity. Dominant peer culture was found to be particularly potent in championing a hegemonic masculinity embodying and cultivating physical domination, aggression and violence underpinned by constructions of females and femininity as the negative 'other'. These restrictive understandings were interpreted as normalised through the philosophies and practices of the boys' teachers and their principal. Here the naturalist assumptions underpinning dominant early childhood pedagogy constituted the boys as 'gender innocent' and were implicated in understandings of developmentally appropriate practice. Through illuminating clear parallels to associated research, this paper presents further warrant for abandoning these naturalist assumptions which continue to mitigate against gender equity in early childhood (MacNaughton, Rethinking Gender in Early Childhood Education, St Leonards, Allen & Unwin, 2000). In this regard, the paper signifies the importance of maintaining a focus on addressing issues of collective masculinity in early childhood. Yes Yes
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This article focuses on the construction of gender identities among young boys and girls in a black primary school. Against the backdrop of food insecurity, young boys’ and girls’ vulnerability to violence and to using violence as a means of getting food is increased. Violence is a clear manifestation of gender inequalities. Drawing on data derived from an ethnographic exploration of children’s gender identities in the first years of primary schooling, this article examines how violence underscores much of social relations amongs boys and girls. The article further illustrates how different forms of masculinities and femininities are constructed. Violence is not the domain of boys only. Girls too take on violent femininities. The implications of recognizing children’s gendered and violent cultures are discussed briefly in the concluding part of the paper.
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This paper explores the salience of sport in the lives of eight‐year‐old and nine‐year‐old South African primary school boys. Drawing on ethnographic and interview data, I argue that young boys' developing relationship with sport is inscribed within particular gendered, raced and classed discourses in South Africa. Throughout the paper I show differences and durability of meanings across the social sites that affect and position blacks, white, boys and girls. It is argued that young boys' early association with sport is centrally about identity and doing sport, or at least establishing interest in sport is one important way in claiming to be a real boy. The findings have implications for the call by the South African Government to get the nation to play.
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The article presents a reprint of the preface of the book "Teaching Boys: Developing Classroom Practices That Work," along with some information on the book as given by its authors. The book's authors state that they have provided a detailed account of the work of teachers who are having success with boys in their classrooms. They explain that the book aims to offer a framework for developing practical, contextually driven and sustainable approaches to improving boys' educational outcomes.
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