IS WHAT YOU SEE WHAT YOU GET? A CRITICAL DISCOURSE ANALYSIS OF VISUAL REPRESENTATION OF FEMALES IN JUNIOR PRIMARY ENGLISH FIRST LANGUAGE TEXTBOOKS IN NAMIBIA

Authors

  • Chipo Mudzikati University of Pretoria
  • Dr Alta Engelbrecht UNIVERSITY OF PRETORIA

Keywords:

feminism, Critical Discourse Analysis, thematic analysis, visual images, patriarchy, subordination, oppression, society

Abstract

Abstract

This paper presents a critical discourse analysis of twelve junior primary English First language (EFL) textbooks in Namibia using visual images as units of analysis.  We assumed there is gender inequality in textbooks. The aim of this study is to investigate how females are represented in these textbooks and why females are presented the way they are. The study is informed by the principles of feminist theory which is premised on the subordination and oppression of females in society. This led to the adaptation of the critical paradigm which also aims at bringing justice to the oppressed. The critical paradigm works well with the qualitative approach design chosen. The images were analysed using themes from the thematic analysis approach and were critiqued using the critical discourse analysis. In this article, we argue that females were oppressed, subordinated and stereotyped in various ways in the sampled textbooks. Findings reveal that females were stereotyped in domestic roles, parental roles, occupational roles, activities and games and were depicted as patients or victims who had no agency. Females were subordinated in occupations. This study was conducted in an African country and its findings are similar to those of other studies from other parts of the world which point out that patriarchy and politics influence the way females are portrayed in textbooks. 

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Author Biographies

Chipo Mudzikati, University of Pretoria

Chipo Mudzikati is a school principal and Tutor in Namibia.  Chipo is a holder of a Master of Education degree and she is currently working on her PhD studies with the University of Pretoria in the field of textbooks focusing on gender inequalities in textbooks. Her research areas of interest include gender, textbook analysis and stereotyping.  Email: chmudzikati@gmail.com

Dr Alta Engelbrecht, UNIVERSITY OF PRETORIA

Dr Alta Engelbrecht is a senior lecturer who teaches Afrikaans Methodology to undergraduate and PGCE students.  Her research fields are textbooks, stereotyping and language methodology.  She is also a postgraduate coordinator of the Department of Humanities Education of the University of Pretoria.  Email: alta.engelbrecht@gmail.com

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Published

2022-05-10

How to Cite

Mudzikati, C., & Engelbrecht, A. (2022). IS WHAT YOU SEE WHAT YOU GET? A CRITICAL DISCOURSE ANALYSIS OF VISUAL REPRESENTATION OF FEMALES IN JUNIOR PRIMARY ENGLISH FIRST LANGUAGE TEXTBOOKS IN NAMIBIA. JULACE: Journal of the University of Namibia Language Centre, 6(1), 49–62. Retrieved from http://journals.unam.edu.na/index.php/JULACE/article/view/1621

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Section

Articles