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ERIC Number: EJ856961
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Nov
Pages: 17
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 58
ISSN: ISSN-0957-1736
Policy: Powerful or Pointless? An Exploration of the Role of Critical Literacy in Challenging and Changing Gender Stereotypes
Ralfe, Elizabeth
Language Learning Journal, v37 n3 p305-321 Nov 2009
The broad context for this article is the 1998 publication of the National Department of Education's (DoE) Gender Equity Task Team Report. Following its publication, the DoE established a Directorate for Gender Equity and each province set up a department to deal with gender issues headed by a gender focal person. Despite these efforts, it is clear that attitudes on the ground have not changed appreciably. Girls at school are often the targets of violence and aggressive behaviour by male learners and teachers. However, if it is possible to moderate or alter behaviour through a critical literacy intervention, then there is hope that learners can co-construct a new, just society in keeping with the spirit of the constitution. This paper reports on a classroom-based critical literacy intervention, the aim of which has been to explore attitudes and perceptions surrounding gender, and to question whether adolescents can be sensitised to gender power through critical literacy. According to its proponents, critical literacy is a way of looking at oral, visual and written texts and questioning the attitudes, values, and ideologies that lie beneath the surface. In doing this, social inequalities and injustices are revealed and the listener/reader/viewer may be empowered to challenge or even change the "status quo", while at the same time improving their language facility. The findings of this research suggest, however, that despite a critical literacy intervention over the period of a year, and the provision of classroom material on the subject of gender and gender equity, stereotypical attitudes about gender roles did not change appreciably. There was, nevertheless, a raised awareness of gender equity issues, particularly among the female learners. (Contains 7 figures and 2 notes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A