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Lärandets komplexa processer: Om maskulinitet och subjektsskapande i en teknikklass på gymnasiet.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Education.
2011 (Swedish)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesisAlternative title
The complex processes of learning : Masculinity and subjectification in a technology class in upper secondary school. (English)
Abstract [en]

My own experiences as an upper secondary school teacher and the increase in research on masculinity in educational settings that occurred during the late 1990 emphasizing on the gender gap in achievement and grades is the point of departure for this thesis. The aim is to investigate how boys in upper secondary school are constituted and constitute themselves as motivated and achieving learning subjects. Another aim is to see what possibilities there are to form different teaching practices to create other possible positions for me and the pupils. The research questions are 1) How does boys´ construction of masculinity constitute how they see their own ability to be motivated and achieve in school 2) What significance do my shifting approaches and expectations on the pupils as well as teaching have on the boys constitution as learning subjects? 

To answer these questions I use a theoretical framework of feminist poststructuralist. The theoretical point of departure is the work of Foucault and the concepts discourse, power and subjectification combined with the concepts positioning, materiality, performativity and hegemonic masculinity. Drawing on feminist poststructuralism, gender is constructed and materialized through language, actions and relations that make subjectification an active ongoing process with a variety of opportunities.

The research methodology is influenced by action research and the study was conducted in my own teaching practice in social science. A group of pupils, 26 boys and five girls, who attended the first year of Technology Program participated in the study. During the research process the action research gradually turned into a method of data collection. Research diary, interviews, surveys and narratives were methods that were used. The material was analysed through a Foucauldian discourse analysis. To make the discourse visible, I also used deconstruction as a methodological strategy where different readings helped me see the multiplicity of ways to understand and act in the teaching practice. 

In the analysis the impact of the specific context and the complex process of subjectification were revealed. The many different discourses being active in the school context made it impossible to say something definite about how motivation and achievement is constituted among the boys in the group. What can be said is that the ladish culture is one part in producing power and hierarchies but popularity and status can be reached through different means. By being social, authentic and not study too much a position of high status can be combined with showing motivation and good achievements. The analysis also shows the teacher's involvement in producing and reinforcing dominant discourses. The teacher’s expectations and attitudes have in this study exhibit an active involvement in students' construction of subjectivity constituting their motivation and willingness to perform. This was shown in the material by the various strategies that were used for disciplining the students where I as a teacher reinforced the students' negative behavior by allowing the positions as "unruly and unmotivated boys". 

The concluding part of this thesis content a discussion about how the teaching practice need a  discourse which calls on teachers to continually deconstruct and make discourse analysis of their teaching. Finally I point to the achievement discourse that dominates in school where teaching and teacher assessment of pupils' skills are exclusively on performance, results and fulfilled goals.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2011. , 86 p.
Keyword [sv]
.Maskulinitet, subjektsskapande, skola, prestation, feministisk poststrukturalism
National Category
Social Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-72128OAI: diva2:489513
2011-10-31, 1708, Frescativägen 54, Stockholm, 13:15 (Swedish)
Social and Behavioural Science, Law
Available from: 2012-03-19 Created: 2012-02-03 Last updated: 2012-03-19Bibliographically approved

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