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Gender in Textbooks Used for English as a Second Language in Sweden: the Role of Adjectives Describing Men and Women
Södertörn University, School of Culture and Education.
2014 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

This essay investigates gender in two textbooks used for teaching English as a second language in schools in Sweden. Previous research has shown that teachers of English as a second language in Sweden rely a great deal on textbooks in their teaching (Skolverket 2006). In addition, the Curriculum for the compulsory school, preschool class and the recreation centre (Skolverket 2011) clearly states that gender should be addressed by all teachers, of all subjects, in Sweden.

In order to investigate gender in the textbooks, a stylistic point of view has been used, and adjectives describing nouns and pronouns denoting people in the textbooks have been used as data for the essay. Both a quantitative and qualitative method have been applied, as both the frequency of adjectives have been analysed, together with an analysis of the semantic domains of the adjectives focusing on their meaning put into context and looking at the adjective as it appears in the sentence.

In order to access relevant data, 113 nouns and pronouns denoting people and 125 adjectives describing the nouns and pronouns were extracted as data. The analysis of the data revealed that the frequency of adjectives was spread equally between the genders. However, more nuns and pronouns in connection to adjectives referred to the male gender.

Looking at the sematic domains of adjectives, this revealed a similarity between the genders in regards to which categories the adjectives could be placed in. However, the words within the categories showed differences which have been connected to gender-stereotypes.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2014. , 35 p.
National Category
URN: urn:nbn:se:sh:diva-24181OAI: diva2:728791
Subject / course
Humanities, Theology
Available from: 2014-06-25 Created: 2014-06-24 Last updated: 2014-06-25Bibliographically approved

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