Advertisement

Postfeminist Educational Media Panics, Girl Power and the Problem/Promise of ‘Successful Girls’

  • Jessica RingroseEmail author
  • Debbie Epstein
Chapter

Abstract

In this chapter, we explore debates around ‘failing boys’ in UK schools as a postfeminist educational media panic. First, we explore how neoliberal ‘discourses’ of feminine educational success have influenced what we call a postfeminist media panic that constructs girls as wholly successful in the Global North, through a review of British policy on gender and education and news media reporting. Second, we explore the globalising reach of postfeminist notions of ‘girl power’ and the celebratory promise of how girls’ educational success will enable wider transnational economic revolution, through a consideration of the corporate social media campaign, the ‘Girl Effect’, in the Global South.

Keywords

Gender Stereotyping Stereotype Threat News Medium Moral Panic Daily Mail 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

References

  1. Aapola, S., Gonick, M., & Harris, M. (2005). Young femininity: Girlhood, power and social change. Basingstoke, UK: Palgrave.Google Scholar
  2. Allen-Mills, T. (2006). Free at last: Alpha teenage girls on top. October 15. http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/article600902.ece. Accessed July 15, 2008.
  3. Arnot, M., & Phipps, A. (2003). Gender and education in the United Kingdom. Paper commissioned for the EFA global monitoring report 2003/4, The leap to equality. Available online at http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0014/001467/146735e.pdf
  4. Blackman, L., & Walkerdine, V. (2000). Mass hysteria. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  5. Butler, J. (1990). Gender trouble: Feminism and the subversion of identity. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  6. Butler, J. (1993). Bodies at matter: On the discursive limits of ‘sex’. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  7. Cohen, J. (2010). Teacher in the news: A critical discourse analysis of one US newspaper’s discourse on education, 2006–2007. Discourse, 31(1), 105–119.Google Scholar
  8. Connell, R. W. (1987). Gender and power. Cambridge: Polity.Google Scholar
  9. Crenshaw, K. (1991). Mapping the margins: Intersectionality, identity politics and violence against women of color. Stanford Law Review, 43(6), 1241–1299.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Crudas, L., & Haddock, L. (2005). Engaging girls’ voices: Learning as social practice. In G. Lloyd (Ed.), Problem girls: Understanding and supporting troubled and troublesome girls and young women. London: Routledge-Falmer.Google Scholar
  11. Cvetkovich, A. (2012). Depression: A public feeling. London: Duke University Press.Google Scholar
  12. Davies, B., & Bansel, P. (2007). Neoliberalism and education. International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education, 20(3), 247–259.Google Scholar
  13. Department for Education. (2010). What is the department doing to address the gender gap? http://www.education.gov.uk/popularquestions/schools/curriculum/a005576/what-is-thedepartment-doing-to-address-the-gender-gap. Accessed June 2011.
  14. DfES. (2007). Gender and education: The evidence on pupils in England. London: Crown Copyright. http://www.ttrb3.org.uk/gender-and-education-the-evidence-on-pupils-in-england/
  15. Duncan, N. (2006). Girls’ violence and aggression against other girls: Femininity and bullying in UK schools. In F. Leach & C. Mitchell (Eds.), Combating gender violence in and around schools. Stoke-on-Trent: Trentham Books.Google Scholar
  16. Epstein, D., Elwood, J., Hey, V., & Maw, J. (Eds.). (1998). Failing boys? Issues in gender and achievement. Buckingham: Open University Press.Google Scholar
  17. Evans, J., Davies, B., & Rich, E. (2010). Schooling the body in a performative culture. In M. Apple, S. J. Ball, & L. A. Gandin (Eds.), The Routledge international handbook of the sociology of education (pp. 200–212). Abingdon: Routledge.Google Scholar
  18. Fine, M., & McClelland, S. I. (2006). Sexuality education and desire: Still missing after all these years? Harvard Educational Review, 76(3), 297–338.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Foster, V. (2000). Is female educational ‘success’ destabilizing the male learner-citizen? In M. Arnot & J. A. Dillabough (Eds.), Challenging democracy, international perspectives on gender, education and citizenship. London: Routledge-Falmer.Google Scholar
  20. Gill, R. (2007). Post-feminist media culture: Elements of a sensibility. European Journal of Cultural Studies, 10(2), 147–166.Google Scholar
  21. Gill, R., & Scharff, C. (2011). Introduction. In R. Gill & C. Scharff (Eds.), New femininities: Postfeminism, neoliberalism and subjectivity. Palgrave: Basingstoke.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Harris, A. (2004). Future girls: Young women in the twenty-first century. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  23. Hooks, B. (2013). Dig deep: Beyond lean in. Available online at http://thefeministwire.com/2013/10/17973/. Accessed November 19, 2013.
  24. Jackson, D. (1998). Breaking out of the binary trap: Boys’ underachievement, schooling and gender relations. In D. Epstein, J. Elwood, V. Hey & J. Maw (Eds.), Failing boys? Issues in gender and achievement. Buckingham: Open University Press.Google Scholar
  25. Jackson, C. (2006). Wild’ girls? An exploration of ‘ladette’ cultures in secondary schools. Gender and Education, 18(4), 339–360.Google Scholar
  26. Keddie, A. (2009). ‘Some of those girls can be real drama queens’: Issues of gender, sexual harassment and schooling. Sex Education, 9(1), 1–16.Google Scholar
  27. Koffman, O., & Gill, R. (2013). The revolution will be led by a 12 year old girl: Girl power and the global biopolitics of girlhood. Feminist Review, 105, 83–102.Google Scholar
  28. Lingard, B. (2003). Where to in gender policy in education after recuperative masculinity politics? International Journal of Inclusive Education, 7(1), 33–56.Google Scholar
  29. Lingard, B., Martino, W., & Mills, M. (2009). Boys and schooling: Beyond structural reform. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Lykke, N. (2010). Feminist studies: A guide to intersectional theory, methodology and writing. Abingdon: Routledge.Google Scholar
  31. McRobbie, A. (2004). Notes on postfeminism and popular culture: Bridget Jones and the new gender regime. In A. Harris (Ed.), All about the girl: Culture, power and identity. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  32. McRobbie, A. (2008). The aftermath of feminism: Gender, culture and social change. London: Sage.Google Scholar
  33. Mendes, K. (2011). Feminism in the news: Representations of the women’s movement since the 1960s. London: Palgrave.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Mirza. (1992). Young, female and black. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  35. Osler, A., & Vincent, K. (2003). Girls and exclusion: Rethinking the agenda. London: Routledge-Falmer.Google Scholar
  36. Paechter, C. (2006). Constructing femininity/constructing femininities. In C. Skelton, B. Francis, & L. Smulyan (Eds.), The sage handbook of gender and education. Thousand Oaks: Sage.Google Scholar
  37. Pateman, C. (1988). The sexual contract. Cambridge: Polity Press.Google Scholar
  38. Payne, E., & Smith, M. (2012). Rethinking Safe Schools approaches for LGBTQ students: Changing the questions we ask. Multicultural perspectives, 14(4).Google Scholar
  39. Phillips, M. (2002). The feminisation of education. Daily Mail. http://www.melaniephillips.com/the-feminisation-of-education. Accessed November 17, 2013.
  40. Ringrose, J. (2013). Post-feminist education? Girls and the sexual politics of schooling. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  41. Ringrose, J., & Renold, E. (2010). Normative cruelties and gender deviants: E performative e ects of bully discourses for girls and boys in school. British Educational Research Journal, 36(4), 573–596.Google Scholar
  42. Ross, T. (2010, January 19). Eton head says UK education is failing boys. London evening standard. http://www.standard.co.uk/news/eton-head-says-uk-education-is-failing-boys-6730040.html. Accessed November 17, 2013.
  43. Sandberg, S. (2013). Lean in: Women, work and the will to lead. London: Ebury Publishing.Google Scholar
  44. Sawer, P., & Henry, J. (2008, October 11). The future is female, job figures show. Telegraph. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/3179265/The-future-is-female-job-figures-show.html. Accessed November 17, 2013.
  45. Segal, L. (1994). Is the future female? Troubled thoughts on contemporary feminism. London: Virago.Google Scholar
  46. Shepherd, J. (2010, September 1) Girls think they are cleverer than boys from age four. The Gurardian, http://www.theguardian.com/education/2010/sep/01/girls-boys-schools-gender-gap
  47. Skeggs, B., & Wood, H. (2012). Reacting to reality television: Performance, audience and value. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  48. Skelton, C., & Francis, B. (2009). Feminism and the schooling scandal. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  49. Switzer, H. (2013). (Post)Feminist Development fables: The girl effect and the production of sexual subjects. Feminist Theory, 14(3), 345–360.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Ta, J. (2004). Girl power politics: Pop-culture barriers and organizational resistance. In A. Harris (Ed.), All about the girl: Culture, power and identity (pp. 69–78). New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  51. Unterhalter, E. (2008). Cosmopolitanism, global social justice and gender equality in education. Compare, 38(5), 539–554.Google Scholar
  52. Walkerdine, V., Lucey, H., & Melody, J. (2001). Growing up girl: Psychosocial explorations of gender and class. Basingstoke: Palgrave.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University College LondonLondonEngland, UK
  2. 2.University of RoehamptonLondonEngland, UK

Personalised recommendations