International Research Project on Pedagogies of Gender & Sexuality in Higher Education: South Africa Jane Bennett, Vasu Re...
2 nd  International Meeting: Researching the Incorporation of Sexualities in the Academic Curricula of Universalities in A...
Because  I  am not dead yet Whose body is told by the story: “ childcare,” “fire Manto!” “the challenge of pain”? Words ar...
<ul><li>Introduction </li></ul><ul><li>Motivation </li></ul><ul><li>The South African Research Project </li></ul><ul><li>S...
Introduction <ul><li>Parallel sets of research interests have galvanized thinking on the African context within circles of...
Motivation is three-fold: <ul><li>Patriarchal nature of institutional norms within African (and indeed, global) HE systems...
The South African Research Project entails four main components: <ul><li>A  data-base  of information (baseline data on HE...
Schematic Overview: Activities and Tasks Planned and Completed (April 2006 – October 2006) Activity/date Achieved April: d...
Schematic Overview: Activities and Tasks Planned and Completed (April 2006 – October 2006) Contd. Phase two:   development...
Theoretical Framework for the SA engagement with project draws on  four key assumptions : <ul><li>Biomedical  models of se...
Empirical and Political Context for the SA engagement with project : <ul><li>Failure of the State to implement its ARV pro...
Mapping the Curricula Terrain within South Africa: Process <ul><li>Website searches of 17 universities in SA </li></ul><ul...
Mapping the Curricula Terrain within South Africa: Process Contd. <ul><li>Searches also resulted in making contacts via em...
Mapping the Curricula Terrain within South Africa: Analysis <ul><li>LAW (gender and sexuality integrated into the law curr...
<ul><li>HEALTH SCIENCES (taught under Nursing, Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Urology, Public Health and Family and Community...
<ul><li>HUMANITIES AND SOCIAL SCIENCES (gender clearly integrated in curricula of several disciplines) </li></ul><ul><li>6...
Other central focus areas of courses offered in gender studies programs are:  the social construction of gender (masculini...
Pedagogies within the courses offered: Some Faculty perspectives and overarching themes (engagement with Faculty voices cr...
Where do you teach, what do you teach? X:  I teach at the University of Pretoria.  I teach one course in sexual and reprod...
Different “canons” of authority preside in the approaches: <ul><li>The complexity of “teaching sexualities and gender” (pr...
Different “canons” of authority preside in the approaches Contd. <ul><li>Social Anthropologists (approach through theories...
Different “canons” of authority preside in the approaches Contd. <ul><li>Most university curricula dominated by American, ...
Autobiographical   Case-Studies (interplay between context, identity, discipline and experience to   understand the politi...
Key moments in the workshop are represented through transcripts of the process: Is teaching gendered?  K:  For me it is ge...
Key moments in the workshop are represented through transcripts of the process Contd. It would be very interesting for the...
Key moments in the workshop are represented through transcripts of the process Contd . How important is Location? What abo...
<ul><li>Data generated from 40 000 word document of autobiographies generated considerable ‘data’. Autobiographies provide...
Interview Data from Students (Pilot) and Interviews with University Administrators <ul><li>Data collected from students  i...
Some Preliminary Conclusions and the Way Forward   <ul><li>Diverse courses which take gender and sexualities seriously on ...
Some Preliminary Conclusions and the Way Forward Contd. <ul><li>Even in disciplines committed to the presence of “the body...
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Sexualities Project - South Africa team

  1. 1. International Research Project on Pedagogies of Gender & Sexuality in Higher Education: South Africa Jane Bennett, Vasu Reddy & Lindiwe Bardill November 2006
  2. 2. 2 nd International Meeting: Researching the Incorporation of Sexualities in the Academic Curricula of Universalities in Asia, Africa & Latin America Project RESEARCH REPORT: International Research Project on Pedagogies of Gender and Sexuality in Higher Education: South Africa Jane Bennett (African Gender Institute, University of Cape Town) Vasu Reddy (Gender & Development Unit, Human Sciences Research Council & Gender Studies, University of KwaZulu-Natal) Lindiwe Bardill (African Gender Institute, University of Cape Town)
  3. 3. Because I am not dead yet Whose body is told by the story: “ childcare,” “fire Manto!” “the challenge of pain”? Words are excellent things, full of energy, but dreadful, gone Do you always think like this? A forensic art, Telling the body when the body is Constantly under disappearance, Not a word
  4. 4. <ul><li>Introduction </li></ul><ul><li>Motivation </li></ul><ul><li>The South African Research Project </li></ul><ul><li>Schematic Overview: Activities and Tasks Planned and Completed </li></ul><ul><li>Theoretical Framework </li></ul><ul><li>Empirical and Political Context for the SA engagement with project </li></ul><ul><li>Mapping the Curricula Terrain within South Africa (Process and Analysis) </li></ul><ul><li>Pedagogies within the courses offered: Some Faculty perspectives and </li></ul><ul><li>overarching themes </li></ul><ul><li>Autobiographical Case-Studies </li></ul><ul><li>Interview Data from Students and Interviews with University Administrators </li></ul><ul><li>Some Preliminary Conclusions and the Way Forward </li></ul>
  5. 5. Introduction <ul><li>Parallel sets of research interests have galvanized thinking on the African context within circles of researchers and practioners concerned with the meanings of “gender activism” on the continent </li></ul><ul><li>The first set involves: intensive engagement with issues of sexuality (policy and programme work: material conditions of women’s oppression; political representation; access to resources (land, education, and reproductive healthcare). </li></ul><ul><li>In respect of gender-based violence issues such as the body and sexuality emerged but rarely explored as research questions in their own right. But this is changing. </li></ul><ul><li>Now: (1) exploration of broad-based policy and advocacy work on HIV/Aids prevention; (2) recognition that sexuality, culture and identity organize the possibilities of “policy uptake” with different localized contexts; (3) growing interest in notions of sexual citizenship within emerging democracies. </li></ul><ul><li>The second set involves: feminist interest in the location and significance of higher education institutions across the continent (issues of globalization, academic freedom, access, citizenship and nationalism). Key to the discourse here: feminist epistemology is central to successful university environments (and the importance of academic/activist networking). The AGI is a key player here is strengthening teaching and scholarship with an African-based Feminist Studies Network. </li></ul>
  6. 6. Motivation is three-fold: <ul><li>Patriarchal nature of institutional norms within African (and indeed, global) HE systems (such as curricula approaches to the body, identities, sexualities) and their disciplinary relevance. How such issues have been challenged by feminists, and how such challenges have approached issues of pedagogy is a key motivation. </li></ul><ul><li>While such HE systems produce a “professional citizenship”, they also construct gendered norms of sexuality, a “compulsory heterosexuality”. How is it possible to “teach gender and sexuality” in such environments? </li></ul><ul><li>How are “sexualities and gender” taught from within dedicated GWS sites and what alliances (if any) exist between GWS and other disciplinary/departmental areas? </li></ul>
  7. 7. The South African Research Project entails four main components: <ul><li>A data-base of information (baseline data on HE sites within departments, faculties, institutions) at which issues of gender and sexuality are addressed (courses, modules, resources). </li></ul><ul><li>Four autobiographically-based, narrative explorations of pedagogies (developed by experienced GWS academics through a workshop process; used as case-studies to research meaning of pedagogies with the current SA HE context). </li></ul><ul><li>A small national workshop on pedagogies and sexualities within the SA HE context that will draw on experiences of academics who work in the area. </li></ul><ul><li>Production of a research report on Pedagogies of Gender and Sexuality in Higher Education in South Africa by the Principal researchers. </li></ul>
  8. 8. Schematic Overview: Activities and Tasks Planned and Completed (April 2006 – October 2006) Activity/date Achieved April: design of web-search research Research assistant contracted; design of project discussed Phase one: development of data-base April -- May: e-based introductory survey of faculty teaching sexuality/gender courses 17 websites identified; e-mail correspondence with 57 identified faculty initiated June – July: collation of course curricula; design of date-base template Analysis of websites ongoing; follow-up with 15 – 20 key faculty; design of data-base template July-August: preliminary analysis of data-base Write-up of preliminary analysis of courses August-September: pilot interviews with sample faculty; followed up by interviews with 16 more faculty members, from different universities/disciplines Interview schedules finalized; interviews begun; analysed August-October: interviews with sample students Interview schedule finalized; course selected for pilot student research; student data from 3 sources collated, analysed; decisions made on collection of new data from students in selected courses (4, in different disciplines); student evaluations and interviews completed; analysed September-October Interviews with university administrators in three key disciplines: Medicine, G/WS, Law September - October Integration of key Phase 3 material into Phase 1 findings for final report Uploading of data-base ongoing
  9. 9. Schematic Overview: Activities and Tasks Planned and Completed (April 2006 – October 2006) Contd. Phase two: development of autobiographical case-studies of sexuality/gender faculty March/April: SA Principal Researchers met, presented proposal to three different universities, in K/ZN; participants in case-studies selected and contracted; workshop facilitator contracted Completed as planned; with need to discuss relocation of Professor Reddy from University of KwaZulu/Natal to the Human Sciences Research Council May: writing case-study workshop – 3 days Evaluated as very successful by all participants; workshop transcripts transcribed as resources May – July: ongoing contact between case-study authors; resources collated, disseminated September: case-studies to be complete 4 case-studies complete Workshop for development of case-studies into book planned for 2007 Phase three: national workshop July/August: planning of national workshop, to bring faculty engaged though Phase One together; invitations sent; programme developed Completed, although some key faculty are not able to attend (Charles Ngwenya, from Law Faculty of University of Free State; Mary Mwaka from Public Health, University of Pretoria) September: workshop held in Cape Town Workshop held; report written, disseminated Oct/Nov Report drafted, discussed, presented for feedback Integration of all phases’ work into report for Puebla Workshop
  10. 10. Theoretical Framework for the SA engagement with project draws on four key assumptions : <ul><li>Biomedical models of sexuality continue to dominate analyses (body, mapping notions of “sex” into norms of “gender” which predict predict particular sexual and reproductive behaviours as norms and pathologize others). </li></ul><ul><li>Within the African contexts, legacies of colonialism remain operative (African bodies as “marked” by race and sexual otherness; the stereotype of sexual abuse as “the worst in the world”; that our relationship to poverty is wrapped into analyses of sexual and reproductive ignorance). </li></ul><ul><li>Feminist foregrounding of sexualities as key to the exploration of the reproduction of patriarchal and neo-capitalist interest in “womanhood” and “manhood” in a heteronormative way. How can we find analyses which can trase “sexualities” away from “gender” without losing a feminist commitment to the transformation of gendered injustice? </li></ul><ul><li>The meaning of rights , as articulated by international movements and instruments seeking to leverage space for sexual, reproductive and cultural agency. </li></ul>
  11. 11. Empirical and Political Context for the SA engagement with project : <ul><li>Failure of the State to implement its ARV programme in the face of HIV/Aids </li></ul><ul><li>The validity of the Termination of Pregnancy Act </li></ul><ul><li>Changing legislation on Marriage </li></ul><ul><li>Oulawing of surrogate motherhood as a paid contractual arrangement </li></ul><ul><li>Processes of the Sexual Offences Bill </li></ul><ul><li>Attempts to change legislation on Trafficking </li></ul><ul><li>Attempts to subject the media to pre-publication government censorship </li></ul><ul><li>54 000 secondary school girls “dropped out” in 2005 due to pregnancy </li></ul>
  12. 12. Mapping the Curricula Terrain within South Africa: Process <ul><li>Website searches of 17 universities in SA </li></ul><ul><li>Between 2003-2005 the HE sector has undergone significant restructuring to reverse apartheid planning that segregated educational opportunities </li></ul><ul><li>Pre-1994 there were 36 HE instititutions. In 2006 this has been reduced to 22 through mergers and incorporations </li></ul><ul><li>Searches began as a scanning process using words such as “sex’, ‘sexuality’, ‘gender’, ‘masculinity’ and femininity’ for courses. ‘Gender’ generated the most results (interestingly ‘’sex’ and ‘sexuality’ often resulted in no findings on websites). </li></ul><ul><li>Courses recorded for our purposes were those that had: (1) explicit references to ‘gender’ and/or ‘sexuality’ in titles or course outlines; (2) references to topics related to sexuality such as HIV/Aids transmission, or teenage pregnancy) </li></ul>
  13. 13. Mapping the Curricula Terrain within South Africa: Process Contd. <ul><li>Searches also resulted in making contacts via email with course conveners and/or lecturers for further information about: (1) course; (2) teaching and research; (3) further leads to other teachers/researchers within their universities. </li></ul><ul><li>17 Universities were identified (courses and lists detailed in Full Research Report but is still under development as we speak) </li></ul><ul><li>Courses reflect: (1) focuses on gender and/or sexuality (in title and course outline); (2) sections that take a gendered analysis of a broader topic; (3) focus on sexuality but without any discussion of gender (e.g. reproductive health courses that do not integrate a gendered perspective of sexuality). </li></ul><ul><li>Disaggregation by Faculties/Research Units that offer a route into discussion of disciplinary based approaches to issues of sexuality and gender (Law; Health Sciences; Education; Education; Humanities & Social Sciences (Notably Sociology, Anthropology, Psychology, Religious Studies, Politics, Social Work, Development and Population Studies, Gender Studies); Arts (notably Film and Media Studies, Art History, Languages and Literatures (notably in Classics and languages such as Afrikaans, Zulu and Xhosa were not identified here). </li></ul>
  14. 14. Mapping the Curricula Terrain within South Africa: Analysis <ul><li>LAW (gender and sexuality integrated into the law curricula in constitutional, private/public, criminal law and criminology and criminal justice; sexuality is integrated into some law courses in relation to human rights, especially sexual and reproductive rights) </li></ul><ul><li>In the broad categories of LAW we observe the potential for integration of gendered and sexual theorizing but it is not clear whether such topics include a critical gendered analysis or whether sexualities forms part of the teaching at all: </li></ul><ul><li>Family law (marriage, divorce and custody) </li></ul><ul><li>Legal Status of Women (differential treatment of law on basis of gender) </li></ul><ul><li>Victimology (study of crime victims) </li></ul><ul><li>Causation (what causes people to commit crimes) </li></ul><ul><li>Human Rights (Sexual and reproductive rights, and rights of children) </li></ul><ul><li>Criminal activity and Violence (domestic violence, sexual offences, assault & rape, child abuse) </li></ul><ul><li>Adolescent/youth crimes (treatment of young offenders) </li></ul><ul><li>Feminist criminology </li></ul><ul><li>Legislation (analyses and application of legislation) </li></ul>
  15. 15. <ul><li>HEALTH SCIENCES (taught under Nursing, Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Urology, Public Health and Family and Community Health) </li></ul><ul><li>Biomedical model is a dominant paradigm (sexuality taught as reproduction in isolation to teaching of gender as power relations, gender as access to medical resources, gendered analysis of health management systems, gender and epidemiology) </li></ul><ul><li>Where some degree programmes merge courses across disciplines (e.g. community health, sociology of health) with medical courses a more holistic approach is evident that includes a gendered analysis (such as Nursing programmes at the University of the Western Cape) </li></ul><ul><li>Obstetrics and gynaecology (teach mainly female sexualities related to reproductive and sexual health, maternal and child health, risks associated with pregnancy and contraception. Gender is assumed in such courses but not mentioned in course outlines, mainly in: primary health care and the social context of disease) </li></ul><ul><li>Family and Community Health courses include analysis of gender and/or sexuality in relation to health and well being, HIV/Aids and sexual violence; gender inequalities in health care, health policy development, and gender in relation to infectious diseases such as TB, STIs and HIV/Aids. </li></ul><ul><li>Notable absence was lack of teaching on abortion. </li></ul>
  16. 16. <ul><li>HUMANITIES AND SOCIAL SCIENCES (gender clearly integrated in curricula of several disciplines) </li></ul><ul><li>6 out of the 17 Universities have Gender Studies departments where gender and sexualities courses integrate a gendered analysis into teachings: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>University of Cape Town (African Gender Institute) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>University of the Western Cape (Women and Gender Studies) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>University of South Africa (Institute for Gender Studies) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>University of Pretoria (Institute for Women and Gender Studies) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>University of Venda (Centre for Gender Studies) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>University of KwaZulu-Natal (Centre for Gender Studies) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Courses offered at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels teach feminist theory and feminist research methods </li></ul>
  17. 17. Other central focus areas of courses offered in gender studies programs are: the social construction of gender (masculinities and femininities) and sexualities, the effects of global economic programs on gender relations (which relates to gender and development), the social roles of men and women, African feminisms and post-colonialism, and gay, lesbian, inter-sexed and trans-gendered studies. <ul><li>Focus on South African gendered identities in relation to social problems: inequality, violence, poverty and HIV/Aids. </li></ul><ul><li>Indigenous Knowledge Systems (IKS) is a discipline offered at Universities (Limpopo and North West) where the curriculum addresses: HIV/Aids in rural communities, women in rural societies, gender, justice and the environment, issues in gender and development, and the intersection of culture, gender, science and technology. </li></ul>
  18. 18. Pedagogies within the courses offered: Some Faculty perspectives and overarching themes (engagement with Faculty voices created through different methods: (1) conventional semi-opened interviews with 20 people in different disciplines/universities based on pre-designed interview schedule; (2) discussion with 16 people in a two-day national workshop; (3) 4 ± 10 000 word autobiographical reflections) Creasing I want to age with grace Medical inspections/procedures make me scared This thematic is opening up academic space How has self-narrative in theorizing fared? Is my body’s sagging and sore showing in my face? Transformations bring both tension and release My students have beauty and grace they oft cant see Sexuality traces both violence and peace Where is the mind inside the body of me? Reading aids in Foucault, Xaba, Giddy… Will muddy and crease (poem created by a participant at the National Workshop in September 2006: a professor of history, looking at connections between history, epidemiology, sexuality and gender)
  19. 19. Where do you teach, what do you teach? X: I teach at the University of Pretoria. I teach one course in sexual and reproductive health to medical doctors who come from all over Africa to do an Masters in Public Health course. It is popular - they want a medical model. What’s the point? X: It’s unbelievably important. I take them to the brothel and the strip club and to other places, like glory holes and sex shops. I think what will make people change? I try to create experience for a personal shift to happen. I took them to gay pride, and students are willing to do these things because it is part of the programme. (interview with a Sexuality and Public Health lecturer)
  20. 20. Different “canons” of authority preside in the approaches: <ul><li>The complexity of “teaching sexualities and gender” (prevalence of HIV/Aids; culture as a term through which to negotiate the right to speak; national political debates concerning policy and treatment) </li></ul><ul><li>Where faculty were taking the politics of gender seriously, this was usually because they were self-identified feminists (also located in personal and professional relationship to political activism around issues of reproductive health rights, gender-based violence, rights of lesbian and gay people, access to political and educational space for women) </li></ul><ul><li>3 of the 6 Faculty in Health Sciences approach teaching sexualities from a biomedical model (anatomical and biochemical construction of the body) </li></ul><ul><li>16 of the 19 complained about a teaching “overload” </li></ul><ul><li>Radical differences to approach to sexualities based on discipline (biomedical versus social constructivist split evident). </li></ul>
  21. 21. Different “canons” of authority preside in the approaches Contd. <ul><li>Social Anthropologists (approach through theories of networking and the symbolic salience of body-fluidities). </li></ul><ul><li>Cultural critics spoke about identities as a primary lens. </li></ul><ul><li>Sociologists focus on intersections between class construction, transaction, labour, and human migration. </li></ul><ul><li>One Law professor approached sexuality through international frameworks on human rights, and national debates on customary and constitutional law (through debates, for example, on marriage and inheritance laws). </li></ul><ul><li>Differing relationships to ‘Northern/Western’ and to ‘African and South African’ debates within curricula design. Some draw on indigenous research (such as material developed through NGOs) and contextualized within continental dabtes. Majority demand engagement and location within Northern/Western literature on sexualities. </li></ul>
  22. 22. Different “canons” of authority preside in the approaches Contd. <ul><li>Most university curricula dominated by American, European and (occasionally) Australian texts. </li></ul><ul><li>In only 5 cases faculty indicated that there was a priority to: “introduce students to writing from South Africa, or from Southern Africa, about these issues. I think it’s crucial for students to read this material, to show them that the authorities can emerge from here”. </li></ul><ul><li>Most inteviewees were explicit about teaching sexualities connecting this priority to national context and the daily challenges: HIV/Aids (deaths in families, orphans, access to ARVs, difficulties of sexual pleasure and experimentation in a climate where HIV transmission is high); the profile of fundamentalist and conservative scripts for femininity and masculinity; gender-based violence, diversity on campus (varying cultural beliefs, values and histories); homophobia and racism. </li></ul>
  23. 23. Autobiographical Case-Studies (interplay between context, identity, discipline and experience to understand the politics of pedagogies and the diverse influences which create “teaching and learning” as political processes) <ul><li>Four lecturers participated in this methodological approach. Participants met in May (process workshop), production of autobiographies (July/August) </li></ul><ul><li>Professor Relebohile Moletsane (Deputy Dean in Graduate Studies, Education Faculty, University of KwaZulu-Natal) </li></ul><ul><li>Professor Vasu Reddy (Human Sciences Research Council based in cultural studies, gender and linguistics) </li></ul><ul><li>Professor Kopano Ratele (Psychology, University of the Western Cape) </li></ul><ul><li>Professor Jane Bennett (African Gender Institute, University of Cape Town) </li></ul>
  24. 24. Key moments in the workshop are represented through transcripts of the process: Is teaching gendered? K: For me it is gendered. It’s also sexual. V: we’re all human beings - and we cannot deny that as teachers we’re also sexual beings and we are turned on by some students but we have to also manage our levels of awareness of those things, we know where our boundaries are […] R: I feel that I’m raising children, it’s the closest I can get to being a mother […]
  25. 25. Key moments in the workshop are represented through transcripts of the process Contd. It would be very interesting for the autobiographical writing if you find that you have a central metaphor and explore that. Are there any thoughts here? J: (the image of being/becoming a suspension bridge): being the path and my sense of becoming capable of being stretched, suspending myself across all kinds of phenomena that are dangerous and unknown to me and to others: phenomena that can be summarized as the disappearance of the body, what it means for the body not to be coded or recognized as a political space. So I feel that my shape is about being a suspension bridge over or against that discursive presence of disappearance of the body that everywhere accounts for the meanings of racism, sexism, inhumanity, so it’s not a path, not a body, it’s an arch. K: What struck me is that I’ve done very little, I was quite surprised to have this come into my head but it is a map of central Africa to the bottom but it also turns out to be an opening flower which is quite surprising so these are routes and roads and paths. V: To describe the shape: it’s more like an onion that is constantly being peeled off – increasing space to breathe, I can see increasing freedoms in terms of my identity, my space, and position in various timelines within that unfolding … all of these lines that you see indicate layers and levels that are opening up … quite a delicious vegetable- that can make you cry- Yes, the positive and negative framed in that shape. I need to reflect on this more but I think the onion may be the metaphor. Certainly the shape that I see is very circular opening up. L: Mine is a moving octopus and I think it’s my teaching about sexuality and because it tends to be influenced by a variety of factors and relationships and its movement is influenced by the state/stage of the water, the tides, it depends on where we are and where I am in my personal and professional life – it doesn’t move straight but its relative stability is influenced by my own relationships. […] The octopus is messy and that’s how I’ve seen my teaching evolving in a messy way, it’s still messy, and I see myself as in the water, in the tides, because of the struggles that I still have to fight within myself as well as in various relationships.
  26. 26. Key moments in the workshop are represented through transcripts of the process Contd . How important is Location? What about place in respect of teaching? J: Location is so powerful in structuring both the possibility of engaging with what we are calling sexualities, personal or political, as part of one’s professional life, how one begins to think about the implications of location for what one has learned and for what one can therefore say, transmit to others, because one of the biggest struggles for me currently as a teacher, as a leaner, is to be in SA in relation to ideas that are embedded in me because of reading, or experience, that actually are northern in their genesis and have power/don’t have power […] V: How one works both in the university context giving a paper or lecture, as opposed to what you’d be saying in an activist context, in advocacy work [ …] vocabulary one uses, the position one takes, how you straddle the intellectual and political in different spaces where exchange of ideas and learning is taking place.
  27. 27. <ul><li>Data generated from 40 000 word document of autobiographies generated considerable ‘data’. Autobiographies provided platform for design of National Workshop (out of which arose key questions for NW); for example: How was sexuality learnt? What did you learn? When? How? Does gender matter? </li></ul><ul><li>More extensive ‘discourse analysis’ is required: links between theories of sexualities education, contextual influences, identities, pedagogic practices </li></ul><ul><li>Faculty approaches suggest: how sexualities and genders were ‘learnt’ outside the context of the university. </li></ul>
  28. 28. Interview Data from Students (Pilot) and Interviews with University Administrators <ul><li>Data collected from students in 4 select courses (G/WS; Public Health; Social Anthropology and Organizational Psychology). Method: emailed questionnaire (113 questionnaires returned) </li></ul><ul><li>Focused on student backgrounds as young South Africans in complex contents; their engagement in informal sites of sexuality and gender education </li></ul><ul><li>Analysis focused on: (1) student responses to individual courses; and (2) as a global group of SA students (there are limitations to this methodology) </li></ul><ul><li>Analysis focused on data to determine broad profile; assessment of impact of course on their gendered/sexual realities; students’ representations of their gender and sexuality knowledge; influences on students; student opinion on incorporation of genders/sexualities in curricula. </li></ul><ul><li>Positive evaluations of courses evident BUT NOT: an evaluation about relevance to their own personal engagement with sexualities </li></ul><ul><li>3 Pilot interviews with University administrators conducted. More work is needed here nationally (but the 3 felt national context implied that sexuality should be mainstreamed in curricula at all levels and universities had a role to play here; policy engagement; transformative relationships amongst staff/students; social responsiveness in support of research programmes. </li></ul>
  29. 29. Some Preliminary Conclusions and the Way Forward <ul><li>Diverse courses which take gender and sexualities seriously on South African university campuses. </li></ul><ul><li>Overwhelming location in the Humanities and in the Health Sciences, and in neither sphere do they constitute a primary zone of curricular emphasis for students. </li></ul><ul><li>With the exception of material presented in Obstetrics/Gynaecology, Nursing and Community Medicine, material on reproduction is not a core part of the curriculum, and is presented within a bio-medical model. </li></ul><ul><li>A strong emphasis on HIV as “sexual risk” does help to develop another angle to the need for “sexualities education,” but again, this is not generally approached as a non-medicalized area. </li></ul><ul><li>Major areas of university education in which issues of gender or sexualities do not arise as curricular concerns. </li></ul><ul><li>There are sites of both research and advocacy education around sexualities and gender on most of the campuses surveyed. These are rarely within the mainstream of the university, and this remains an area for more investigation to build a rich picture of what universities are engaged with. </li></ul><ul><li>The national context structures powerful dilemmas for both faculty and students. Faculty perspectives on gender and sexualities teaching indicate that while such teaching does indeed offer a route into potentially transformative leaning for students, this route is compromised by the general academic environment, and more seriously, by the intransigence of the idea that “academic theory/writing” is fundamentally separable from “ways of living your life.” </li></ul>
  30. 30. Some Preliminary Conclusions and the Way Forward Contd. <ul><li>Even in disciplines committed to the presence of “the body” (though diverse, even contradictory, routes), the role of the university as a route into “professionalization” trumps – or challenges – efforts to radicalize consciousness at every level. </li></ul><ul><li>Individual faculty are often dedicated to interacting with these challenges, and do so with innovation, political courage, and theoretical clarity. The impact of this dedication may well be felt at the level of a single course; it is unlikely to translate into a more widespread influence. </li></ul><ul><li>Student feedback on courses, based in different disciplines, suggests that these courses do introduce them to intellectual ideas they find valuable, but it is not clear </li></ul><ul><li>(a) how this impact should be understood in the context of students’ overall engagement with informal sexualities and gender education offered on the campus and beyond </li></ul><ul><li>(b) whether positive feedback on a course can translate into sustainable education where the environment is largely inhospitable to this (but not entirely) </li></ul><ul><li>(c) whether intellectual value translates into practical relevance for students, who are thoroughly embedded in a complex nexus of “gender and sexualities education” beyond the university, and through the informal – but intensive -- projects of heterosexuality, femininity and masculinity, organized within it. </li></ul><ul><li>Autobiographical work on sexuality and pedagogies suggests that there is immense growth potential here to develop theorizations based on experience and context (combined with empirical and statistical data gathering and analysis) </li></ul>

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