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Nationalism, gender and citizenship in pedagogical texts and education policy – Some examples from Turkey and Sweden

Konferensbidrag (offentliggjort, men ej förlagsutgivet)
Författare Marie Carlson
Tuba Kanci
Publicerad i ECER 2013 (European Educational Research Association), Creativity and Innovation in Educational Research. 10-13 September, 2013 Istanbul, Bahcesehir University
Volym Book of Abstracts ECER 2013
Publiceringsår 2013
Publicerad vid Institutionen för sociologi och arbetsvetenskap
Språk en
Ämnesord nationalism, gender, citizenship, education policies, textbook analysis
Ämneskategorier Sociologi, Statsvetenskap, Tvärvetenskapliga studier, Genusstudier

Sammanfattning

Public mass education has been widely used as a mechanism for socialization and disciplining of populations, but it has also attained more tasks than these. As we may see from numerous studies, it is used as an instrument for creating social change and realizing the process of nation building. Yet over the last decades, as globalization process became more and more influential, education and globalization also became interconnected in complicated ways. Education became a discursive battlefield where globalization is discussed in terms of more and more intensive economic, political and cultural linkages and geographical dependencies across great geographical distances. It came to be understood as a concrete weapon, or instrument, with whose help citizens (and their nations) became better equipped to handle globalization processes. Hence education is supposed to prepare citizens for a ‘new global world’ at the same time as that global world is making new demands on citizens’ compliance with regard to the nation. Our ongoing project, Future citizens in pedagogical texts and education policies – Examples from Lebanon, Sweden and Turkey, provides three national examples for a closer analysis of both the historical development of education and nation-building and more contemporary debates on globalization, nation, national development and the education of the ‘right’ citizen. However this paper will present results mainly from the Turkish case and some examples from Sweden for a comparison. The overall aim of the project is to examine, using a transnational perspective, how globalisation processes are expressed in educational policies and pedagogical texts. How is the ‘right’ citizen presented and depicted and what values are highlighted – at both national and global level? Whose history is made visible and what voices are heard? What groups or categories are identified? Two broader sets of issues will be highlighted in the paper: • How are the ’citizen’ and the citizen’s identity constructed in relation to place, nation, language, religion, ethnicity and gender in policy documents for schools and pedagogical texts? • How is the relationship between national and global perspectives treated in relation to the ’citizen’ in guidance documents for schools and pedagogical texts? Theoretically this project combines several fields of research: social science research on transnationalism, research on education and nation-building, education policy and forms of governance, research on textbooks and the globalization of education. Intersected insights provided by the studies on gender, nationalism, citizenship and, identity are used. Constructions of nationhood involve specific notions of manhood and womanhood, and discourses on nation and gender intersect and are constructed by each other in various ways. The overall theoretical/methodological framework of the project is linked to critical discourse analysis that provides tools for studying how the ‘citizen’ and different subject positions are constructed in both text and practice. The paper will focus mainly on Turkey and on how gender identities are narrated and attempted to be constructed with respect to the nation and the state. It will present some results from the analysis of education policies, educational documents and curricula in the later years of compulsory school. School textbooks within social sciences, history, geography, citizenship and religion textbooks are analyzed. Over and above textual analysis, interviews have also been conducted with educational bureaucrats and politicians. Teachers and authors of textbooks will be interviewed further on. For Turkey, over the last decades, globalization, and Europeanization processes have been quite influential. Concomitantly, there have been increasing reactions to such developments. A radical rise of a 'banal nationalism' in everyday-life has been witnessed. Nationalism, in fact, has been the hegemonic discourse in public education and naturalized through the constructions of femininity and masculinity. Nationalist discourses – a growing cultural racism since the 1990s – also occur in the Swedish context. A comprehensive curricula reform was realized 2005 in Turkey. It seems that the emphases on ethnic and/or cultural nationalism are set aside, and identity, difference, rights and individual are among the catchwords of new textbooks. However, a closer look at the “gender regime” shows that a more subtle analysis of the hidden discourses is necessary – the books show contradictions/contradictory messages. Although the division of labor seem to have a more gender equal nature; gender biases and an ethno-cultural nationalism continue to exist as among the layers of the discourses of the textbooks – in fact, both are interconnected. Ethno-cultural nationalism is also possible to discern in Sweden – in textbooks and steering documents, especially in relation to gender issues and immigrants.

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