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Conflict and gender

July 25, 2011

Karen E. Wohlwend wrote a really interesting article, ‘Friendship Meeting or Blocking Circle? Identities in the Laminated Spaces of a Playground Conflict’ in Contemporary Issues in Early Childhood, 8(1)2007, pp73-88.  I’m going to have to pull it apart for my own purposes, but I really like her approach on several levels… in any case…

Wohlwend highlights the gendered tensions in an example of conflict that she observed and then subjected to deep analysis. 

Just for now, I’ll note the subtitle she gives part of her discussion and return to the rest later:

“Gendered Aggression: ‘No hitting’ means ‘boys don’t hit girls’ and ‘girls don’t hit'”

(p80).  It’s a comment that resonates within me – and one I want to remind myself of! 

How do texts that represent violent conflict to adolescent readers reinforce gendering?  There must be loads of research on this!

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