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VOLUME 3 / SEPTEMBER 2013


VOL - 3 / 2013 - SEP


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School as a Gendered Space for Democratic Practice

Abstract

This paper explores how the democratic values are gendered by the school practice. It looks at the way how the curriculum objectives stressing the assimilation of democratic values of belonging/inclusion, participation and solidarity are practiced in the school context. The article shows that girls deal better with democratic values as they gender morality/femininity renders them more empathic, participatory and caring for others than boys. While, boys lack the experience of caring for the wellbeing of others and they refuse to provide it in terms of their masculinity. The social meanings of masculinity devalue everything that is feminine such as caring for the well-being of others, inclusion, equality, acceptance and empathy. Masculinity becomes a barrier in translating democratic values in practical acts. Furthermore, schools do not provide support to boys to learn to change behavior for becoming more inclusive. School reiterates gender disparities in practicing democratic values through the educational process of cultural reproduction. Instead of preparing boys to interiorize democratic values and perform democratic practices, the school contributes further to the reducing of boys’ social competence and responsibility. The value of belonging seems to have no institutional interest and social responsibility lags behind other social abilities.

Keywords

Moral; Democracy; Curriculum; Gender; Responsibility

Authors

Merita PONI

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