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date: 24 August 2017

Gender, Justice, and Equity in Education

Summary and Keywords

The field known as gender and education emerged in the 1970s, and currently addresses a range of issues of equity and justice in education with the widespread incorporation of “intersectionality” (i.e., the interlocking nature of gender and other categorizations such as social class, race, ethnicity, sexualities, disability). The topics and practices constituting the field have changed over the years, as demonstrated in a survey by the authors of Gender and Education, the main journal of choice for those working in the field. Key topics addressed by researchers include patterns of examination achievement, curriculum and school practices, and the variety of femininities and masculinities produced with/in schooling and education. Overarching themes on the conduct of the field include decreased focus on practice and action, increased emphasis on theorization, critique of the dualisms on which the field is based (girl/boy, male/female, masculinity/femininity), and Anglophone and Western bias.

Keywords: gender, equity, social justice, education, intersectionality, femininity, masculinity, feminism, curriculum, Anglophone

Development of the Field: Historical Background

The field known as gender and education emerged in the 1970s, following the impact of new social movements such as feminism and civil rights, which influenced not only politics but attitudes toward social structures and fields of knowledge. Education was one such field, and early investigations focused on school structures and practices, for example, gender bias in textbooks, gender differentiation in the curriculum, and sexist practices in the classroom (Deem, 1980; Lobban, 1975; Spender; 1982; Weiner, 1985). Following this, as noted by Skelton, Francis, and Smulyan (2006), research into the experiences of girls and women flourished, and for the UK and Anglophone countries, has been summarized as follows:

While some studies focused on the way in which educational resources are disproportionately directed at boys, and the discriminatory practices and attitudes in educational environments that worked to ‘teach girls their place’, others attacked the masculinist epistemology underpinning the very construction of knowledge. Within this body of work, two key understandings of gender predominated: socialization and ‘sex role’ models (in which gender roles are reproduced via social institutions). … And work developing cognitive psychology approaches about the learning of gender identities.

(Walkerdine & Ringrose, 2006, p. 31)

Additionally, in other countries, for instance Sweden, researchers focused on the impact of state gender policy and the kind of curriculum and practices needed to promote gender equality (Wernersson, 2009). As early as the 1970s and 1980s, feminist researchers concluded that gender could not be treated as a distinct category, but needed to be explored alongside other social factors (Walkerdine, 1990). Criticisms were made of the universalistic claims of (middle-class) White feminists to speak for all women, thus disregarding the demands and positionings of working-class women, Black women, women with disabilities, and so on (Mirza, 1992). Another much criticized tendency of the time was for academics to engage in commatisation: the prioritization of particular aspects of inequality, usually social class, while “less important” social factors, for instance, race, ethnicity, gender, religion, sexuality, dis/ability, and intelligence were listed (with commas) as add-ons (O’Brien, 1984). Not only did commatisation fail to give due attention to gender, it maintained the unspoken norm of (White) male privilege.

With commatisation, the policy emphasis goes onto the ‘disadvantages’ of ‘women (comma) blacks (comma) gays (comma) …’ etc., etc. and leaves the advantages available to the unspoken norm (white, male, straight, etc.) hidden from view … .

(Bacchi, 2010, p. 6)

Feminists and gender researchers challenged the notion of essentialism, that is, the set of attributes thought necessary for “normal” patterns of gender identity and action: for example, the nature of fixed gender identities and treatment of girls (and boys) as homogenous groups with identical educational experiences and requirements. Feminist scholarship splintered into a variety of feminist discourses (Weiner, 1994) to signify the different value standpoints from which feminist and gender researchers came, and to reflect different education policies on gender in different countries and global regions (Arnot, 2008; Unterhalter, 2007).

Historically, social class and ethnicity/race were central to gender analyses and indeed, certain researchers displayed a continuing interest in gender-class relations in education, and in identifying particularly, the importance of working-class, student subjectivities, and social identities (Reay, 2006; Skeggs, 1997; Walkerdine, 2003). But at times, such gender-class analyses were more marginalized with Archer and Leathwood (2003, p. 228) concluding in the early 2000s, that social class as a critical factor for educational outcomes had largely disappeared from the mainstream educational agenda, due both to neoliberal discourses that disguised structural inequalities and to criticism of “grand theories that championed social class, such as Marxism … for their universalizing tendencies.” However, parallel to this critique, renewed class analyses came from feminist and queer theorists (Skeggs, 2004) and regarding the impact of poverty on educational outcomes (OECD, 2007).

Following the establishment of Gender and Education in the late 1980s as the prime journal for the field, as well as recognition by other education journals and publishers of the importance of the work of feminist scholars and gender researchers, the status of the field strengthened. By the 1990s and 2000s, there was no longer the need to argue for the relevance of gender to education; thus, the discourse shifted away from a reform discourse emphasising the primary need to change gender relations, to a normalising discourse that sought to theorize the precise nature of gender positioning, identity, and subjectivity. A tension thus emerged between different generations of gender researchers, and between earlier aims of “making a difference” to the gendered nature of schooling and education, and more theoretical and methodologically sophisticated approaches that sought to “trouble” the problem itself, that is the binaries between girl/boy, female/male, gay/straight, subject/object, and so on. Such researchers drew on the feminist philosopher Judith Butler’s concept of gender performativity where performance is understood as forming the subject (person) but also producing the space for diverse and conflicting subjectivities. Thus, it was claimed, gender positioning, while often normative, is open to alternatives, and can never be reproduced precisely (Butler, 1990; Webb, 2014).

With specific regard to education, Francis and Paechter (2015) highlighted the importance of understanding the range of gender subjectivities and their various intersections and time/space variations. However, anticipating criticism of this analysis for “reifying dualistic gender distinctions” (Francis & Paechter, 2015, p. 778) between masculinities, and femininities, Francis and Paechter argued for a more accurate depiction of gender that focuses on performance as opposed to physical attribution (i.e., the body). But again, they critiqued this position, for potentially stereotyping expressions, which denied gender identities that for some (e.g., trans-persons) had been acquired only after a long struggle, and for ignoring justice/power issues related to the gendering of bodies (e.g., access to welfare, choice of schooling, vulnerability to violence). Instead, they proposed three modes of categorization/types of lens: the spectator view, namely, perceptions of researchers and researched; the individual respondents’ views of how they should be categorized; and the features of the local discursive and material collage, which influence gender production and recognition (Francis & Paechter, 2015, p. 786).

Simultaneous to this interrogation of gender, researchers adopted the concept of intersectionality to explicate the interlocking nature of gender and other categories, and their intricate and diverse effects in the (re)production of identity and inequality (Crenshaw, 1995). Which category is most important? How does each interact with the other? How might taking an intersectional viewpoint help us understand the educational possibilities and life chances, say, of a Black 11-year-old boy with a physical disability, from a high-income family, living in a largely White rural area of England?—which is after all, what his teachers would want to know. Relationships between categories were thus seen not only as complex but as having a variety of potential configurations and interpretations.

Critiques of essentialism and identification of the intersectional nature of gender were not new, however, as we have already seen in gender-class analyses. They had emerged early in second-wave feminist theorizing, even if they differed conceptually from later intersectional frameworks. Thus, Lykke (2010, p. 68) suggests three clusters of feminist intersectional analysis:

  • feminist theorizing of intersectionality that does not use the concept of intersectionality,

  • explicit feminist theorizing of intersectionality that uses Crenshaw’s conceptualization of intersectionality, and

  • implicit feminist theorizing of intersectionality that focuses on the intersections per se.

Notwithstanding, questions remain about which gender-related issues are likely to persist in public and research discourses; currently these include sexualization of children and young people in and out of school, gendered and sexualized violence, performance gaps, income and opportunity gaps, and disparate gendered expectations in professional, domestic, and intimate lives.

Empirical Issues: Achievement, Curriculum, and School Practices

An early motivation for research on gender and education was the perceived bias in the treatment of girls and women in educational research and in schooling generally. Efforts were made to counter this bias by researching the educational experiences of girls and women and ensuring their access to the full curriculum at all levels of education. Several strands of research emerged as a consequence, including achievement, curriculum, and school practices.

Achievement Discourses: “What About the Boys?”

Identification of gender bias in many aspects of schooling (as above) was followed by improvements to girls’ examination scores and increased female enrolment at tertiary levels of education in many countries and regions (Weiner, Arnot, & David, 1997). However, rather than applauding girls’ achievements, media and other responses in various English-speaking and other OECD countries, reiterated the question, “what about the boys?” (e.g., Francis, 1999). The logic of the sex difference dualism meant that if girls’ examination scores were seen to increase, it could only be at the expense of boys. Subsequent concern about boys’ “underachievement” in examinations emerged as a traveling discourse, which moved between countries and largely ignored national patterns and contexts (e.g., Arnesen, Lahelma, & Öhrn, 2008). It also had differing impacts on national policies and research. This discourse typically emphasised raw examination scores and binary gender differences while ignoring, for example, the impact of social background, which was found to be particularly influential on examination patterns (e.g., Bakken & Elstad, 2012). Here, focus on gender was presented as an antagonistic relation (girls versus boys) with an in-built bias toward the interests and achievements of girls. It was noticeable how these and other “poor boy” discourses, for instance, concerning the negative impact of female teachers and the so-called feminization of today’s schools, differed markedly from earlier explanations for female underachievement, judged as due primarily to (inferior) female biology and so-called innate gender differences (Weiner et al., 1997).

Discourses on boys’ underachievement further stressed the importance of education for their eventual social and labor market positioning, despite evidence of a complex relationship between school success, labor market status, and financial reward. For instance, persistent gender wage gaps favoring males remain visible internationally, despite the higher grades achieved in school generally by girls and young women (European Commission, 2014; Mukherjee, 2015).

Explanations for gender differences in achievement drew on studies showing the influence of dominant (youth) femininities as typically more consonant with commitment to schooling and hard work (e.g., Epstein, 1998); and boys’ rejection of schooling and anti-school attitudes (e.g., Trondman, 1995; Warrington & Younger, 2002; Willis, 1977). Yet, evidence also accrued of the existence of dominant, high-achieving (youth) masculinities, exhibiting high levels of academic knowledge and self-esteem (e.g., Skelton & Francis, 2011). It was found that central to all youth masculinities is the need to show achievement as effortless, and associated with aptitude and intelligence. According to Jackson and Nyström (2015, p. 394):

Effortless academic achievement is equated with authentic intelligence in many western societies, and being intelligent or smart is highly valued both in, and outside of, educational contexts.

In contrast, “effort” was found to be more highly valued in Asian countries (see also Stevenson, Chen, & Lee, 1993). Jackson and Nyström conclude that the position of “effortless achiever” is strongly gendered and classed and therefore available only to a few. Categories of “genius” remain exclusive to males and draw on historic elite discourses (Paule, 2015). Consequently, many boys (and girls) may see little point in striving to succeed.

Student perceptions mirror those of their teachers who are more likely to consider their male students talented and intelligent, irrespective of their actual achievements, whereas female success is more dependent on hard work (e.g., Öhrn, Asp-Onsjö, & Holm, 2017). There is thus ambivalence in how girls and their attendant femininities are positioned. On one hand, they are associated with success in school examinations, but on the other, are less likely than their male peers to be judged talented or intelligent. This is further complicated by the perception that opportunities for young females have expanded, whereas those for young males have contracted. Delamont (2001) concludes that opportunities for girls and women (as well as for boys and men) may well have widened over time; however, women additionally retain overwhelmingly responsiblility for domestic and emotional work while men across all social classes are better positioned in, and more highly rewarded by, the labor market and world of work.

Curriculum and School Practices

In the 1970s and early 1980s, research on curriculum and school practices typically focused on gender differences in teaching, with teacher and student interactions seen as central to the reproduction of power relations, student identities, and school success. Of particular interest were subject content, student choice, and teachers’ differential treatment of students.

In terms of the curriculum, Paechter (1998) showed that official curricula rarely address gender equality directly (exceptions being Sweden and South Africa for differing historic reasons). Rather, official curricula communicate implicit gender assumptions, for example, that “power” subjects, for example, science, mathematics, and technology are more interesting for male students; and “softer” subjects such as languages and literature, are more appealing to their female counterparts.

Regarding research on school practices and teachers’ differential treatment, while initial studies concentrated on institutions and their gendered messages and resources, there was more emphasis later on student experiences and agency. Both approaches used the concept of “voice,” to identify who is most listened to, mainly some boys, and who is most silenced, mainly the girls. As Arnot writes (2006, p. 408):

The silencing of women … is a key aspect of patriarchal domination and control through hegemonic language, knowledge, values and structures. Women’s silence represents, as Walkerdine (1990, p. 30) argued, ‘psychic repression, suppression of the articulation of forbidden discourse’, and/or political resistance.

Studies consistently showed that boys were more visible in classrooms and were afforded more teacher time, with girls receiving less attention, having less influence on classroom practice and teaching content, and less likely to be remembered by teachers (e.g., Brock-Utne, 1982; Mahony, 1983; Spender, 1982). This was the case even where girls were clearly active and/or wanting more contact with their teachers (Öhrn, 1993; Younger, Warrington, & Williams, 1999). Schools were thus typically found to reproduce silent/silenced female positions, although studies also pointed to substantial within-group differences.

As we have seen, research in the last few years has focused on intersections and diversity, simultaneous to a general move away from dichotomous gender categories toward multiple femininities/masculinities. Here, schools are perceived as “active co-constructors” of dominant forms of masculinity and femininity, with available student positions constructed by multiple categories, including class, gender, ethnicity, sexuality, and generation (e.g., Haywood & Mac an Ghaill, 2013). For instance, girls are encouraged to develop “respectable” femininities (Skeggs, 1997) and avoid resorting to working-class behavior such as “loudness and naughtiness” (Ali, 2003, p. 275) or demonstrating “laddish,” anti-school attitudes typically associated with working-class boys (e.g., Phoenix, 2004). Indeed, “laddish-ness” is noted among boys generally, often played out as a self-worth protection strategy when facing the possibility of academic failure (Jackson, 2002). Increased emphasis in recent times on competition, achievement, and individualism within schooling has meant that students have accrued different forms of value to the school: for example, students (both girls and boys) who develop good achievement records are important for school rankings in league tables and for attracting (high-achieving) students, whereas the reverse is the case for lower achieving or less supported students.

In general terms, girls, high-achieving students, and those with ‘motivated’ and ‘supportive’ parents are valued and sought after; students with special educational needs, emotional or behavioural difficulties, social disadvantage, and English as a second language are not.

(Ball, 2001, p. 199)

This problematizing of certain boys and their behaviors has not, for the most part, been accompanied by a greater celebration of girls’ achievements. Rather, girls are produced as the global, obedient, disciplined subject. As Ringrose (2007, p. 471) argues:

The gender and achievement debate fuels a seductive postfeminist discourse of girl power, possibility and choice with massive reach, where girls’ educational performance is used as evidence that individual success is attainable and educational policies are working in contexts of globalization, marketization and economic insecurity.

Studies have also shown that informal, “friendly” student-teacher interactions reinforce hegemonic and heterosexual masculinity, and inflexibility in gender identities and relations (e.g., Abraham, 2008; Francis & Skelton, 2001). Sexuality, particularly heteronormativity, has been understood as fundamental to the construction of gender within schooling despite implementation of gender equity policies; “the rhetoric of equality inclusion and progressive change leaves heterosexuality and its privileges largely uninterrupted” (Neary, Gray, & O’Sullivan, 2016, p. 251). Heterosexuality is seen as reproduced through schooling as a consequence of a number of factors including: (mothering) femininities associated with primary teachers, (Epstein, O’Flynn, & Telford, 2000); school rules, routines, and expectations requiring acceptable (heterosexual) student behaviors (Epstein, 1997); monitoring of female/non-White sexualities in sex education (Garcia, 2009); and bullying, harassment, and name-calling among students (Lehtonen, 2002). It has thus been argued that sexism in school would be better labeled “heterosexism” (Epstein, 1997, p. 106).

Studies of textbooks have been used as an indicator of dominant perceptions of gender and other social categories in contemporary life. Analyses typically report stereotyped representations of gender and a bias toward male subjects and their actions, but also changes over time in some countries, especially in the representation of girls and women. For instance, Sleeter and Grant (2011) found that while men remain dominant in North American textbooks and there are few portrayals of people in nontraditional roles, females make more appearances than previously. Other studies identify more transgressive femininities, such as Biemmi (2015)1 whose survey of Italian primary textbooks showed males as predominant, and more likely to be stereotyped, with almost all counter-stereotypes associated with female roles. Analyses of Swedish textbooks (Eilard, 2009) show a marked change in the representations of girls over time, now far more likely to be portrayed as strong and independent, whereas there have been fewer changes in the depiction of boys (and men).

Conduct of the Field: Practices of the Gender and Education Journal

As already suggested, the content of the field has changed over the years, as demonstrated in a small survey of the journal, Gender and Education, the main journal of the field (Öhrn & Weiner, 2009). Carried out in 2008, the survey focused specifically on the years 1990, 1998, and 2007, as early, midpoint, and later markers of the journal’s development. The remit of the journal at the time was to further “feminist knowledge, theory, consciousness, action and debate.”2 The growing popularity and maturity of the field could be seen in the increased number of journal issues and articles over the period. Other trends included increased emphasis on theory and abstraction, reduced attention to policy/practice and practitioner viewpoints (missing altogether from some later issues), and Western and Anglophone bias.

Theory and Abstraction

Due to the combination of greater attention to gender theory (as above) and the demands of performance culture and new public management within neoliberal university regimes (Morley, 2015), gender researchers are now less likely to view themselves as agents of change and more as having specific scholarly expertise in a legitimate disciplinary field. This has meant that there has been increased prioritization of academic rigor and “publish or perish” mentalities over political activism and campaigning for gender change in schools and in education generally. This supposed shift can also be found in wider feminist debate. For instance, Toril Moi (2014), criticizes contemporary feminist theories for being overly abstract and therefore unable to uncover the knowledge necessary to change and improve women’s lives—which, as she points out, is the foundational goal of feminist theory, while Sue Clegg (2006, p. 310) describes the phenomenon as a “retreat into theoreticism.”

Practice and Action

Echoing the findings of the survey, the role of the practitioner and of practice is of less interest to gender researchers than in previous decades. For instance, Tinkler and Allan (2015, p. 734) point to the lack of practitioner viewpoints in the Gender and Education journal:

There have been many fascinating biographical/autobiographical accounts by scholars in the field, but with notable exceptions . … these narratives are rarely collated and reflected on in terms of our networks and communities.

As we have noted (Öhrn & Weiner, 2009), second-wave feminism from the 1970s onward prioritized action and agency in generating gender change, while this was not the case for the poststructural turn of third-wave feminism. However, there have been exceptions, with newly formed groups attempting to address gender issues in diverse ways. For example, Lambert and Parker (2006) write about groups of young feminists who combine campaigning against sexism with using traditional and new forms of feminist protest and awareness raising, and deliberately designed “cool” campaigns, to create a form of pragmatic action that seeks to engage with the widest possible audience. The aims of such actions are not only to challenge stereotypes but to attract men and other groups to the anti-sexist cause, a particular feature of what Whelehan (2000) terms, “new” or “post feminism.” Another example of practical action is the website of the Gender and Education Association, which offers an overview of different forms of feminist pedagogy and non-sexist ways of subject teaching, as well as a wide range of teaching resources.3

Western and Anglophone Influence

The survey of the Gender and Education journal identified a preoccupation with issues of Western feminism, with a critical article suggesting “silences” in the journal on non-Anglophone issues and perspectives, and an “othering” of the non-Anglophone, as primarily illuminating the specificity of the region (Öhrn & Weiner, 2009). A subsequent discussion in the journal,4 and increased recruitment of journal board members from regions and countries other than Anglophone, resulted in a substantial widening of authorship. Despite this, a similar criticism was made more recently of the same journal by Carvalho (2014) who found that approximately 30% of the authors of articles published between 2011 and 2013 were from the United Kingdom and 20% were from the United States, compared to only four articles from authors from Latin America. For other non-Anglophone regions, however, the situation had improved; for example, Lahelma (2015) showed over the same period (2011–2013) that more than 10 percent of articles were written by academics from the Nordic region.5 Lahelma suggested that improved Nordic representation was due, no doubt to greater awareness of the journal editors themselves, but also to active feminist networking across the region, and perhaps most significantly, the adoption of English as the main language of communication at Nordic conferences and journals.

The geopolitics and spatiality of gender research, we have observed, attracts a continuing focus on urban rather than rural settings. American/Anglophone researchers have tended to identify urban education settings with poverty, school failure, disadvantage, and so on, which, according to Noblit and Pink (2007, p. xi), perpetuates a negative “social problems orientation,” rather than recognition of urban education’s dynamism, cosmopolitanism, and creativity. We have argued (Öhrn & Weiner, 2007) that such an orientation creates silences with regard to research on non-urban and rural educational settings, which often share similar problems (low achievement, problematic masculinities, and femininities) but sometimes not. Rural educational settings may experience complications unique to their sparse populations, such as the high cost of distance education and/or finding enough teachers for rural schools. The silence regarding rural education thus may obscure the importance of location, social class, ethnicity, and gender as experienced across socio-spatial settings.

Concluding Points

In this short overview, we have provided a historical account of the field that has come to be known as gender and education; its key topics and issues; and the challenges it faces from neoliberalism, both in schools (increased competition, marketization, individualism) and higher education (“publish or perish” cultures, research assessments, requirements for theoretical and methodological sophistication). We have seen struggles over emphasis (theory/practice, researcher/practitioner, Western/White, and Anglophone dominance), and internal challenges from new generations of researchers who wish to eliminate the dualisms (girl/boy, female/male, femininity/masculinity) around which the field was initially constructed. These battle lines, or what has been termed “linear generationalism” have risked leaving “feminist politics [and gender research] stranded in the past” (Hemmings, 2009, p. 33). Instead, Hemmings argues, critical conversations are needed between past and present, which have the potential for opening up new understandings and actions for justice in the future. Gender equity perhaps is now more recognizable as a call for justice, legal, and ethical recognition and/or inclusion of sexuality and gender-diverse citizens, rather than as earlier, concerning gendered experiences and equal opportunity for girls and boys—now frequently dismissed as an outmoded binary formation. We might wish to question whether it is indeed now possible to work with the concept of gender research given changes to gender and sexual politics, and to theoretical and material understandings of gendered experiences (Gannon, 2016).

Mary Evans (2014) reminds us, however, that the history of feminism (and gender research) has never been linear, that is, from absence to presence; neither is it necessarily aligned to modernity and progress. Rather, the ups and downs of feminism have generated three main strategies: (i) engagement with various forms of politics of the worlds in which we live, (ii) fusion of academic disciplines and the possibilities of cross-disciplinary research, and (iii) use of personal involvement and recognition. Most importantly, feminist theory offers a challenge to knowledge, which has hitherto had the covert or overt authority of man.

Moreover, new issues have crowded on to the gender and education agenda in recent decades, for example, how we can incorporate into educational research, understandings of the impact of economic crises, and the importance of feminist theorizing for unpicking the workings of neoliberalism. Feminist economists, for example, have critiqued neoclassical economic theories that construct a gendered notion of rationality and macro- and microeconomic modeling instead, adopting the concept of intersectionality as a means of avoiding the false homogenization of women’s and men’s lives (see section on “Economy” in Evans et al., 2014). The impact of war is another issue that confronts educational researchers, as teachers in many countries are forced to address the consequences of global conflict, especially the numbers of traumatized migrant and refugee children coming through their doors. Feminist-driven studies of violence have offered insights into popular conceptions of (militarized) masculinities and their implications, as well as of sexual violence in conflict and post-conflict settings. Most importantly, they show the un-exceptionality of violence whether in war settings or in the domesticity of everyday life (see section on War, Violence, and Militarization in Evans et al., 2014).

Finally, it has become evident in compiling this overview of the field of gender and equity in education that, even in its short history of 40 years or so, the field has had to incorporate many changed notions of feminism, gender identity and inter- and cross-sectionality, as well as serious challenges to its foundational assumptions about what gender has meant and means now in different educational settings, within and across nations and continents. We have also identified generational tensions among feminist and gender researchers concerning their relationship to political action on one hand, and the theoretical and methodological innovations required by academia on the other. This is the field’s dynamic yet controversial legacy, which will no doubt be taken forward by new generations of researchers in ways difficult for us at this stage to anticipate.


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(1.) Biemmi (2015) considers this one of three prominent and widely researched topics in contemporary academic debates on gender and education in Italy (the others are gendered subject choice and lack of teacher awareness of gender issues).

(2.) The journal website elaborates as follows: “The journal grew out of a feminist politics and is committed to developing the critical discussion of gender and education in its broadest sense. It is particularly interested in the place of gender in relation to other key social differences and seeks to further feminist knowledge, theory, consciousness, action and debate. We welcome contributions which examine and theorize the interrelated experiences of women and girls and men and boys, and how these shape and are shaped by other social differences” (, retrieved April 9, 2008).

(4.) See Viewpoint Section in Gender and Education, 2015, 27(2).

(5.) The Nordic countries comprise five countries: Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden.