Policy Discourses, Gender, and Education: Constructing Women's Status

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  • Edition: 1st
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2007-09-12
  • Publisher: Routledge

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Despite over thirty years of activism and legislation to eliminate discrimination, parity has yet to be achieved for women in academe. Enrollment growth, changes in undergraduate and graduate majors and baccalaureate degree attainment indicate improvement in women?s status since the early 1970s. However, persistent salary differentials between male and female tenured faculty members, underrepresentation of women in leadership roles, senior faculty, chilly classroom and campus climates are some indicators of the persisting inequities for women in postsecondary education This book describes policy discourse analysis as a framework for considering how those involved in policy-making efforts may make use of discourses that inadvertently undermine the intended effect of the policies they set forth. Allan illustrates the methods of policy discourse analysis by describing their use in a study of 21 women?s commission reports produced at four research universities in the U.S. from 1971-1996. In so doing, shehighlights the important work of university women?s commissions while uncovering policy silences and making visible the powerful discourses framing gender equity policy initiatives in higher education. Her findings reveals how dominant discourses of femininity, access, professionalism, race, and sexuality contribute to constructing women?s status in complex and at times, contradictory ways. This important volume will interest researchers across a number of disciplines including policy studies, educational leadership, higher education and cultural studies of education.

Table of Contents

Tablesp. ix
Acknowledgmentsp. xi
Introductionp. 1
Discourse Theory and Policy Discourse Analysisp. 13
Discourse, Power, and Knowledge: The Making of Subject Positionsp. 15
Unthinking Policy: Why Policy Discourse Analysis?p. 27
Shaping Policy Discourse Analysis: A hybrid methodologyp. 39
Doing Policy Discourse Analysis: An Illustrationp. 53
Historical and Contemporary Contexts, Applicationsp. 69
University Women's Commissions and Women's Status: An Introductionp. 71
The Outsider: Policy Discourse Analysis and Women's Access to Higher Educationp. 79
The Vulnerable Outsider: Policy Discourse Analysis and Women's Safety on Campusp. 99
Achieving Women: Shaping the Professional Subjectp. 115
Discourse and Identity Differences: Constructing Women's Statusp. 135
Unthinking and Re/thinking: Insights from Policy Discourses of University Women's Commissionsp. 151
Policy Discourse Analysis: Limits and Possibilitiesp. 163
University Women's Commission Official Reports Used as Primary Data Sourcesp. 171
Institutional Contexts of University Women's Commissionsp. 173
Summary of Codes and Subcodes of Policy Discourse Analysis Study of University Women's Commission Reportsp. 187
Notesp. 191
Referencesp. 197
Indexp. 211
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