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ERIC Number: EJ882179
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Jan
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0954-0253
Great Expectations and Post-Feminist Accountability: Young Women Living up to the "Successful Girls" Discourse
Baker, Joanne
Gender and Education, v22 n1 p1-15 Jan 2010
The prevalence of the discourse of "successful girls" (and failing boys) in Australia and internationally has been widely documented. Against the much-vaunted lifting of barriers to opportunity for girls and women, it might reasonably be expected that their educational experiences and career paths are expressive of wider opportunities, greater confidence and autonomy. This article draws on qualitative research with young women in regional Australia to argue that supposedly outmoded but evidently durable patterns of educational and occupational experience remain and are accompanied by new burdens and anxieties. Importantly, young women are now obliged to account for these unfashionable arrangements, using the ubiquitous belief in choice and the possibility of self-actualisation to demonstrate the volition and agency deemed appropriate to a post-feminist ethos. Thus, techniques of reflective selfhood and neoliberal accountability are mobilised to justify social reproduction, while at the same time showcasing invigorated notions of meritocracy and social mobility. (Contains 1 table and 1 note.)
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia