Teachers’ Perceptions of National Identity and Its Intersection with Gender: A Phenomenological Study in a Conflict Society


Panteli, Yolanda, and Michalinos Zembylas. 2013. “Teachers’ Perceptions of National Identity and Its Intersection with Gender: A Phenomenological Study in a Conflict Society.” Gender & Education 25 (4): 379–95. doi:10.1080/09540253.2012.746648.

Authors: Yolanda Panteli, Zembylas Michalinos


The aim of this study is to investigate Greek-Cypriot teachers’ perceptions regarding the role that national identity and its intersection with gender play in representations of the past. Drawing on data deriving from forty individual interviews and analysed through the lens of intersectionality theory, it is shown that: although all teachers were able to recognise the role of national identity in representations of the past in the Cyprus conflict, the majority of these teachers were not equally aware of the gender politics in representations of the past. The participants seemed to be willing to take responsibility for the ways in which they represented the national identity, but they were not willing to assume responsibility for their gendered representations; instead, these representations were deemed ‘unconscious’ or a ‘product of tradition’ or the ‘natural order’ and, thus, not within their control. The paper ends with a discussion of how this study informs educational research and teacher professional development, concerning the intersection of national identity and gender in relation to issues of collective memory.

Keywords: identities, qualitative interviews, conflict and post-conflict studies, primary (elementary) education

Topics: Education, Gender, Gender Roles, Nationalism Regions: Europe, Southern Europe Countries: Cyprus, Greece

Year: 2013

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