Gender positioning in the visual discourse of Algerian secondary education EFL textbooks: Critical image analysis vs teachers’ perceptions

The present study revisits the issue of gender positioning within the visual discourse of three Algerian secondary education English textbooks. In order to get an informed view about gender representation in these materials, it was deemed necessary to combine the outcomes of theoretical critical accounts with language teachers´ potential interpretations of gender bias within the textbooks. First, the selected visual corpus was scrutinized for gender bias through critical image analysis. The major aspects, in which gender bias can be embedded, have been addressed within a well-elaborated framework. Second, the perceptions that secondary education EFL teachers have of this issue were surveyed by dint of a self-report questionnaire which was submitted to a conveniently selected sample. The comparative analysis of the results indicate that while the majority of the images display clear signs of bias against females, most teachers hardly view any imbalances between the two genders as far as visual representation is concerned. This mismatch seems arguably related to the fact that gender bias is still considered a peripheral area of interest by the majority of EFL language practitioners.

Cezayir ortaöğretiminin EFL ders kitaplarının görsel söyleminde cinsiyet konumlandırması: Öğretmenlerin algılarına karşı eleştirel imaj analizi

Bu çalışma, üç Cezayirli orta öğretim İngilizce ders kitabının görsel söyleminde toplumsal cinsiyet konumlandırma konusunu gözden geçirmektedir. Cinsiyet temsili hakkında bilgilendirilmiş bir görüş elde etmek için, bu materyaller, teorik eleştirel hesapların sonuçlarını, dil öğretmenlerinin ders kitaplarındaki cinsiyet yanlılığı konusundaki potansiyel yorumlarıyla birleştirmenin gerekli olduğu kabul edildi. İlk olarak, seçilen görsel korpus, kritik görüntü analizi ile cinsiyet yanlılığı açısından incelenmiştir. Cinsiyet önyargısının içine alınabileceği ana yönler, iyi hazırlanmış bir çerçevede ele alınmıştır. İkincisi, ortaöğretim EFL öğretmenlerinin algıları, uygun bir şekilde seçilmiş bir örneğe gönderilen bir öz bildirim anketi ile incelenmiştir. Sonuçların karşılaştırmalı analizi,görüntülerin çoğunluğunun kadınlara karşı önyargının net belirtileri olmasına rağmen, çoğu öğretmenin, görsel temsil söz konusu olduğunda, iki cinsiyet arasındaki dengesizlikleri görmenin zor olduğunu göstermektedir. Bu uyumsuzluk, cinsiyet yanlılığının halen EFL dil pratisyenlerinin çoğunluğu tarafından büyük bir ilgi alanı olarak görülmesi gerçeğiyle tartışmalı görünmektedir.

Kaynakça

Abdelhay, B., & Benhaddouche, W. (2015). Gender Stereotyping through Textbook Illustrations: A Case Study of Algerian Middle School Textbook-Spotlight on English. Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences, 6(5), 435-440. DOI: 10.5901/mjss.2015.v6n5p435

Abolaji, M. S. (2013). Gender and Language Education Research: A Review. Journal of Language Teaching & Research, 4(3), 454-463. DOI:10.4304/jltr.4.3.454-463

Ansari, H., & Babaii, E. (2003). On the manifestation of subliminal sexism in current Iranian secondary school ELT textbooks. Iranian Journal of Applied Linguistics, 6(1), 40-56. Retrieved from http://www.sid.ir/En/Journal/ViewPaper.aspx?ID=4483

Bailey, B. L., Scantlebury, K., & Letts, W. J. (1997). It's not my style: Using disclaimers to ignore gender issues in science. Journal of Teacher Education, 48(1), 29-36. https://doi.org/10.1177/0022487197048001005

Blumberg, R. L. (2008). The Invisible Obstacle to Educational Equity: Gender Bias in Textbooks. Prospects, 38, 345-361. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11125-009-9086-1

Boubakour, S. (2017). Femme et genre au prisme des manuels scolaires. Nouveaux Imaginaires du Féminin. Retrieved from https://hal.univ-cotedazur.fr/hal-01666786/document

Boukheddad, C. (2011). Gender, Race and Generation in Algerian Secondary School Textbooks (Magister dissertation). Retrieved from https://dl.ummto.dz/handle/ummto/199

Brugeilles, C. & Cromer, S. (2009). Analysing gender representations in school textbooks. Paris: UMR CEPED.

Cook, M. (2005). Gender bias in language textbooks. Journal of the Faculty of Global Communication, Siebold University of Nagasaki, 6, 13-18. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/10561/284

Cook, M. (2015). Gender Bias in ESL/EFL Textbooks: 10 Years Later. JALT Materials Writers SIG, 23 (3), 4-7. Retrieved from http://materialswriters.org/joomla/index.php/83-articles/148-btkarchives

Demir, Y., & Yavuz, M. (2017). Do ELT coursebooks still suffer from gender inequalities? A case study from Turkey. Journal of Language and Linguistic Studies, 13(1), 103-122.

Donaghy, K., & Xerri, D. (Eds.). (2017). The image in English language teaching. Malta: ELT Council. Retrieved from http://kierandonaghy.com/books/image-english-language-teaching/

Fairclough, N. (1989). Language and power. London: Longman.

Giaschi, P. (2000). Gender positioning in education: A critical image analysis of ESL texts. TESL Canada Journal, 18(1), 32-46. https://doi.org/10.18806/tesl.v18i1.898

Graci, J. P. (1989). Are Foreign Language Textbooks Sexist? An Exploration of Modes of Evaluation. Foreign Language Annals, 22(5), 477-486. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1944-9720.1989.tb02771.x

Gray, J. (2002). The global coursebook in English language teaching. In D. Block & D. Cameron (Eds.), Globalization and language teaching (pp. 161-177). New York: Routledge.

Gunther, K., & Leeuwen, T.V. (2006). Reading images: The grammar of visual design. (2nd ed.). New York: Taylor and Francis e-library.

Gupta, A. F., & Yin, A. L. S. (1990). Gender representation in English language textbooks used in the Singapore primary schools. Language and education, 4(1), 29-50. https://doi.org/10.1080/09500789009541271

Hartman, P. & Judd, E. (1978). Sexism and TESOL materials. TESOL Quarterly, 12(4), 383-393. DOI: 10.2307/3586137

Hellinger, M. (1980). ‘For men must work, and women must weep’: Sexism in English language textbooks used in German schools. Women's Studies International Quarterly, 3(2-3), 267-275. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0148-0685(80)92323-4

Jones, M. A., Kitetu, C., & Sunderland, J. (1997). Discourse roles, gender and language textbook dialogues: who learns what from John and Sally? Gender and Education, 9(4), 469-490. https://doi.org/10.1080/09540259721204

Kobia, J. M. (2009). Femininity and masculinity in English primary school textbooks in Kenya. The International Journal of Language Society and Culture, 28, 57-71. Retrieved from https://aaref.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/28-6.pdf

Lakhdar-Barka, F. (2011). La représentation du personnage féminin dans le manuel d’Anglais en Algérie: vers une éclipse totale? Tréma, (35-36), 114-127. DOI: 10.4000/trema.2634

Lakoff, R. (1975). Language and women’s place. New York: Harper and Row Publishers.

Lee, J. F. (2014). Gender representation in Hong Kong primary school ELT textbooks–a comparative study. Gender and Education, 26(4), 356-376. https://doi.org/10.1080/09540253.2014.916400

Lee, J. F. & Collins, P. (2008). Gender Voices in Hong Kong English Textbooks—Some Past and Current Practices. Sex Roles. 59(1-2), 127-137. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11199-008-9414-6

Levine, D., & O’Sullivan, M. (2010). Gender and images in the EFL textbook Talk a lot, Starter Book. The Journal and Proceedings of GALE, 3, 33-42. Retrieved from https://gale-sig.org/website/galejournalv3.pdf

Lesikin, J. (2001). Determining Social Prominence: A Methodology for Uncovering Gender Bias in ESL Textbooks. In A. Hewings & H. D. Hall (Eds.), Innovation in English Language Teaching: A Reader. (pp. 275-283). New York: Routledge.

Littlejohn, A., & Windeatt, S. (1989). Beyond language learning: perspectives on materials design. In R. K. Johnson (Ed.), The second language curriculum. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Ma, K. (1998). The representation of gender in current ESL reading materials. The ORTESOL Journal, 19, 1-22.

Michel, A. (1986). Down with Stereotypes! Eliminating Sexism from Children’s Literature and School Textbooks. Paris, France: UNESCO.

Mills, S., & Abolaji, S. M. (Eds.). (2015). Gender Representation in Learning Materials: International Perspectives. New York, Routledge.

Mineshima, M. (2008). Gender representations in an EFL textbook. Bulletin of Niigata Institute of Technology, 13, 121-140. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/10623/20259

Porreca, K.L. (1984). Sexism in Current ESL Textbooks. TESOL Quarterly, 18(4), 705-724. https://doi.org/10.2307/3586584

Renner, C. E. (1997). Women are" Busy, Tall, and Beautiful": Looking at Sexism in EFL Materials. Retrieved from ERIC database. (ED411670).

Rifkin, B. (1998). Gender representation in foreign language textbooks: A case study of textbooks of Russian. The Modern Language Journal, 82(2), 217-236. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1540-4781.1998.tb01195.x

Sadker, D. (1999). Gender equity: Still knocking at the classroom door. Educational Leadership, 56(7), 22-27.

Sadker, D. M., & Zittleman, K. (2007). Practical strategies for detecting and correcting gender bias in your classroom. Gender in the classroom: Foundations, skills, methods, and strategies across the curriculum. In J. A. Banks & C. A. McGee Banks (Eds.). Multicultural Education: Issues and Perspectives. (pp. 137-153). New Jersey, USA: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

Sakita, T. I. (1995). Sexism in Japanese English education: A survey of EFL texts. Women and Language, 13(2), 5. Questia, web, 05, April 2018.

Sunderland, J. (1992). Gender in the EFL classroom. ELT Journal, 46(1), 81-91. https://doi.org/10.1093/elt/46.1.81

Sunderland, J. (2000). New Understanding of Gender and Language Classroom Research: texts, teachers and student talk. Language Teaching Research, 4(2), 149-173. https://doi.org/10.1177/136216880000400204

Sunderland, J. (2015). Gender (Representation) in Foreign Language Textbooks: Avoiding Pitfalls and Moving On. In S. Mills & M. S. Abolaji (Eds.). Gender Representation in Learning Materials: International Perspectives. (pp. 19-34). New York: Routledge.

UNFPA (1994). Issue 7: Women Empowerment. Cairo: UNFPA. Retrieved from https://www.unfpa.org/fr/node/9551

Wodak, R (2002). What CDA is about - a summary of its history, important concepts and its developments. In R. Wodak & M. Meyer (Eds.). Methods of critical discourse analysis (pp. 1-13). London: Sage Publications, Ltd.

Women in EFL Materials (1991). On balance: guidelines for the representation of women and men in English language teaching materials. Retrieved from https://libcom.org/blog/balance-guidelinesrepresentation-women-men-english-language-teaching-materials-28052014

Zerar, S., & Riche, B. (2014). Of the Representation of Women in the Algerian Textbooks of English. Humanities and Social Sciences Review, 3(4), 33-41. Retrieved from http://www.universitypublications.net/hssr/0304/html/B4R466.xml

Kaynak Göster