The teacher's body: discourse, power and discipline in the history of the feminization of teaching
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Historical studies of the feminization of teaching have provided important additions to feminist understandings of teaching and education in general. However, most historical accounts of the feminization of teaching have absorbed the body. Teachers are presented as body-less entities. El cuerpo is ignored, passed over, and perhaps denied to the point of invisibility. The absence of the body in educational research is problematic. The purpose of this dissertation is to reveal the images of the body of the teacher in the history of the feminization of teaching (HFT) texts and to illuminate the discursive impacts on the body of the teacher in HFT texts. Multiple epistemologies of the body provide a theoretical framework and analytical tool to highlight the often-ignored and marginalized body of the teacher. I draw on multiple research methods of deconstruction, genealogical analysis, and carnal metodologÃas to allow for images of the body to emerge and for discursive impacts on the body to surface. Four images of the body are discussed as possibilities: teacher as container, spatial organization of the teacherÂs body, teacherÂs body as performative, and resisting bodies. The implications of the study suggest a rethinking of the teacherÂs body as a vessel of multiple possibilities and counter discourses, beginning in a revolutionary teacher education. Western and androcentric conceptions of educational spaces must be redefined in order to allow for new possibilities for teaching and learning. Unleashing the ÂunrulyÂ passionate body of the teacher is a subversive act of contingency and critical transformative pedagogies. The study concludes with recommendations for further research intended to broaden the research scope of current educational inquiry. Suggestions for deeper examinations include a genealogical analysis of teaching and the teacher in order to problematize current educational discourses (i.e., accountability, best practices, child centered, cooperative learning). Hybrid methodologies and examinations that center the body in current contexts could generate more discussion about the (im)possibility to carry out liberatory/radical projects in the classroom. Examinations of how research impacts and is impacted by the body could illuminate the inter- intrarelationship that research has with the body.
Saavedra, Cinthya Michelle (0001). The teacher's body: discourse, power and discipline in the history of the feminization of teaching. Doctoral dissertation, Texas A&M University. Texas A&M University. Available electronically from