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Chapter 7

SOC275H5 Chapter Notes - Chapter 7: Egerton Ryerson, Hidden Curriculum, Muscular Christianity

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Hae Yeon Choo

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Chapter 7 Textbook
Chapter 7 Introduction
- Hidden curriculum is the lessons and rules learned in schools that are not part of what is
formally transmitted by the teachers and the official curriculum.
- The interplanetary theory tells us that boys and girls are fundamentally difference and
categorically different, that boys excel in science and math, play violently in the
playground, and shout out in class; that girls, on the other hand, sit quietly, speak softly,
play gingerly, and excel in French and in literature. At the same time, we sit in the same
classroom, read the same books, listen to the same teachers, and are supposedly graded
by the same criteria.
- But different classroom experiences
- Before we even enter the classroom, we our beginning our gendering experiences,
learning and teaching one another what it means to be a man a woman
- We see it in schools—who teaches us, what they teach us, how they teach us, and how the
schools are organized as institutions.
- These are present both in the official curriculum and in the informal interactions with
both teachers and other students—the hidden curriculum/parallel
- Parallel curriculum by the mass media reinforces our gendered experiences *
oThe message that students get is that women and men are different and unequal,
that the inequality comes from the differences and therefore its justified
oConsider the opposite
Traditional Education: Learning to be a Man
- Formal education has been limited by sex and class—now in the modern world, also by
o18th century: largely researched for upper-class boys and men, women were
viewed ad insufficiently rational. Some girls and women, mainly religious elites,
became highly educated but the idea of being educated was masculine – mainly
less formal basic education
o18th century: formal education expanded, as a way to assimilate. Educations was
seen as more valuable in mouldy freely obedient subjects and it corrected gender
imbalance in Quebecois society, more government support to catholic and public
schools, more parents enrolling children in school
The presences of girls in school wasn’t a problem, but there was a
disagreement as to what they should be learning
Egerton Ryerson, and influences figure in Canadian schools felt that girls
should be educated for their proper sphere, and not for paid employment.
Nor should they be taking difficult courses that for lead to university
admission. Thus, even though education remained universal, there were
forms of exclusions, gender-based, in the system.
oImperial manhood, British Empire. Sports and education became more linked to
the ideas about what it meant to be masculine, and British. In the form of
‘muscular Christianity’ these ideas spread throughout North America.
oIn the 19th century, the notion of separate sphere carried on in education, many
argued that “manly” education was not suited for women and the higher education
for women would results in monstrous brains and puny bodies with flowing
thought and constipated bowels, because it would violate the plan women’s bodies
held for them

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Chapter 7 Textbook
oThe University of Toronto had to be compelled by law to permit women to attend
classes, and the male medical students welcomed their female colleagues by
filling their seats with filth.
oAn education that was 150 years ago was training in manhood has opened to
women. However, women entered gendered classrooms and our classrooms
continue to be gendered in ways both predictable and surprising
The Gendered Classroom
- Canada’s education is gender-neutral
- Yet, the formal educational gendering process begins the moment we enter the classroom
and continues throughout our educational lives
-Example: in preschools and kindergarten classes, we often find the heavy blocks, trucks,
airplanes, and carpentry tools in one area and the dolls and homemaking equipment in
another area. Although they may be officially open to everyone to play, the area are often
sex-segregated by invisible but real boundaries
-Ex. In elementary schools, informal play during out-of-school hours involves different
sports/rules/playground activities, but the rule of segregation is the same. Boy and girls
learn and teach each other what the appropriate behaviours and experiences for boys and
girls are and make sure everyone acts accordingly.
- Less visible—the ways the teachers and curriculum overtly and subtly reinforce not only
gender difference, but also the inequalities that go along with and even produce that
-Example “From elementary school through higher education, female students receive
less active instructions, both in the quantity and in the quality of teacher time and
attention” – David sadker and Myra sadker education professors
oMany teachers perceive boys as being active, capable of expressing anger,
quarrelsome, punitive, alibi building, and exhibitionistic, and they perceive girls
as being affectionate, obedient, responsive, and tenacious. Teachers assume girls
will love reading and hate math and science, and they expect the opposite of boys
oTeachers call on boys more often an spend more time with them, they ask boys
more challenging questions and wait longer for them to answer in comparison to
oThey urge boys to try hard and that they can “do it”
oTeacher believed that boys needed more attention and because they have trouble
doing things like reading and wiring and math, they need more time (Sadkers
-Example. Teachers often accept certain behaviours of boys because they are “just boys
being boys” (Dalley Trim)
- Teachers were far less tolerant of girl’s misbehavior and deemed that as too mature, little
cows, and even real bitches. – (diane reay)
-Example: 90% of the times, teaches use textbooks and these textbooks significantly
influence teachers decisions
oFemales have been vastly underrepresented and often absent, in pictures, in titles,
and as main characters and when they are present they’ve typically been cast as
secondary or insignificant characters
oTheir activities have been limited to loving, watching, or helping, whereas males
have engaged in adventuring and solving problems. Women have not been given
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