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ERIC Number: ED422577
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1998-Apr
Pages: 11
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Contact and Comfort Zones: Gay Male Praxis in the Composition Classroom.
Magee, D. B.
Over a 12-year teaching career--7 years on the college level--an instructor has found that his healthy identity as a gay male informs his performance in the contact zone of the classroom in ways that may be different than that of heterosexual teachers. It appears that gay male composition teachers who are less closeted view their sexual orientation as having more positive influences upon their teaching practices. A study by Pat Griffin found that both gay and lesbian teachers rely on one of four "identity management strategies" that vary according to the individual teacher's willingness to disclose information about sexual orientation: "passing,""covering,""implicitly out," and "explicitly out." One teacher who operates at the "covering" level of identity management admits that he exerts extra energy avoiding full disclosure; he does not think his praxis is noticeably affected. For teachers who are "out" in other aspects of their lives, covering strategies often act as restraining orders, keeping educators from exploring other pedagogical practices and influencing the assignments they choose. Teachers who are implicitly or explicitly out support the idea that eliminating the worry about sexual orientation frees them to focus on praxis in ways that may have been off-limits when they were teaching from the closet or "covering." (CR)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A