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DECLARATION
I, __Modau MB (student number__28173619), have read the information above and
understand it. I know what plagiarism is and am aware of the consequences of
committing plagiarism. I further declare:
1. that the text and bibliography of this paper reflect the sources I have consulted, and
2. that sections with no source references are my own ideas, arguments and/or
conclusions.

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DATE: _09 APRIL 2018

SIGNATURE: __MODAU MB_

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Modau M.B
28173619
WVOS 311
SETLOGELO
INDIVIDUAL ASSIGNMENT 1
9 APRIL 2018

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Table of contents

1. Introduction……………………………………………………………………….………………………..4
2. Content ………………………………………………………………………………………………………..4
2.1Th e issue of Patriarchy in a school situation…… ..…………………………………..4
2.2 How can the issue be addressed using critical theory and feminism?……..5
2.2.1 Critical theory……………………………………………………………………………………….5
2.2.2 Feminism……………………………………………………………………………………………..5
2.2.2.1. Liberal and radical feminism…………………………………………………………….5
3. Conclusion…………………………………………………………………………………………………….6
4. Reference list..……………………………………………………………………………………………..7
6. declaration ……………………………………………………………………………………………………1

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TOPIC: The issue of patriarchy in a school situation and how critical theory together with
feminism can solve this issue.
1 Introduction

Like any other place the school environment has various complications, it may be internal or
external issues that affect leaners and since it affects their school work it also affects the educator
as well. Some of these issues are biased where else others aren’t. The external issues like
Patriarchy affect the learners and their success in attaining full purpose of school. Patriarchy
literally means “the rule of the father, “father of a race” or “chief of a race, patriarch (Hornby,
2003:121). Historically, the term patriarchy was used to refer to autocratic rule by the male head
of a family. Patriarchy is a social system in which males hold primary power and predominate in
roles of political leadership, moral, authority, social and control of property. In the domain of the
family, fathers or father figures hold authority over women and children. It also recognizes the
institutionalized subordination and exploitation of women by men as the core of patriarchy. A brief
background of how patriarchy affects girls in school will be discussed in this essay and how
feminism and critical theory can be used to address this issue in details.
2. Content
2.1 The issue of Patriarchy in a school situation
Sociologists Heaton (1996:58) argue that the ‘hidden’ curriculum is a major source of gender
socialisation within schools. They believe that schools seemed to show or have: text books with
modern family culture and where children are taught from an early age that males are dominant
within the family; various subjects are aimed at a certain gender group, for example Food
Technology would be aimed at females, leading on to the typical role of females doing housework
and cooking; sports in schools are very much male and female dominated within the education
system, with boys playing rugby and cricket while girls play netball and sing. It could be seen that
the majority of teachers are female, but that the senior management positions are mainly male-
dominated, which continue to give girls learners impression that they should be led by males and
obey to their commands without critiquing as they are the heads of the families.( Girls needs to
be taught feminism and critical theory in schools to end oppression taking place. According to
Lerner (1989:143), people are living in a male-dominated society where historically girls and
women have been ‘kept in their place’ while men have dominated areas such as politics,
education, the military. In the past girls have academically underachieved. At present girls are
achieving better than boys if results are used as the criteria for success. Before the National
Curriculum, it was not unusual for girls to pick subjects that prepared them for their futures as
mothers and homemakers. Cookery or Home Economics were seen as the subjects that many
girls should follow whereas for some science was irrelevant, as those would prepare them to be
mothers and homemakers.

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2.2 How can the issue be addressed using critical theory and feminism?
2.2.1 Critical theory
Critical theory is a type of social theory oriented toward critiquing and changing society as a whole,
in contrast to traditional theory oriented only to understanding or explaining it. Critical
theories aims to dig beneath the surface of social life and uncover the assumptions that keep us
from a full and true understanding of how the world works. The theory entitles humans to acquire
certain skills of how to conduct lives on daily basis through learning and experience. Critical theory
helps and gives advantage to re-assess oneself, re-examine, re-shape and take priorities into
more account. Moral and ethnic education is important, to teach that morals are what conducts
our lives, being realistic and idealistic, therefore it is very important for critical theory to be applied
in a classroom in every possible way so that if anyone feel oppressed say their issues without
fear, criticism should be allowed in schools let learners criticise education system and what they
are taught.( Tuana N 1993) A gender equal curriculum reflects the diverse character of society
with all its components by increasing the number of female achievers in texts as well as in the
examples cited in class. Instructional materials, whether textbooks, hand-outs or workbooks, need
to be examined to determine if they are gender biased, gender neutral or gender-
sensitive/responsive. In Teacher Education Organizations programs need to include components
that recognize gender equality issues in learning materials, as well as ways of addressing those
issues faced by teachers once they take up the profession and start to use these materials in their
classes. Quality curriculum needs to include gender equality as an outcome of teaching and
learning in and schools. An educational system that adopts gender equality principles are able to,
revise its curriculum framework to explicitly state commitment to gender equality, emphasize
attitudes and values that promote gender equality, ensure that the content of the course syllabus
includes values and attitudes of gender equality. Revise textbooks and learning materials to
become gender-sensitive. Remove gender-based stereotypes that contribute towards
perpetuating gender inequalities.
2.2.2 Feminism
2.2.2.1 Liberal and radical feminism:
Liberal feminists are the feminists who believe that the best way to fight patriarchal systems is
by establishing legislation to fight discrimination. E.g. the right for some women to vote in 1918
and finally all women to vote in 1928 were liberal feminist approaches. The proposed and failed
Equal Rights Amendment of the early 1980s was also a liberal feminist approach. This school of
thought believes women would achieve better equality if they were just more visible in the current
social structure. Liberal feminists believe changes in equal opportunities and educational policies,
e.g. the National Curriculum, will end patriarchy. Therefore, laws in school must be put which
state that teachers should be equal in the management positions and curriculum should
accommodate both girls and boys in an equal way.(Mickell G 1995) Girls should be taught and
motivated to take subjects they could not previously take. Although not all radical feminists are
lesbians, many lesbian separatist groups have influenced this school of thought. Radical feminists

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believe patriarchy will only end when women are freed from the physical and emotional violence
inflicted by men in the classroom and the playground. Therefore there should be great measures
to end violence n bulling happening in schools and that is about strength boys use power they
have to bull girls. Serious punishment should take place when such incidents occur.(Weir J 2007)
3. Conclusion
A conducive learning environment should consist of boys and girls treated in an equal way to fully
show their capabilities without fear of culture or society. Learners and teachers are living in a
patriarchal societies and they continue to teach learners same things they are taught at home as
the basic learning starts at home. Teachers need to be taught feminism and critical thinking and
how to apply them in a classroom situation. The gender inequalities stated above results in many
girl children dropping out before they reach matric. Many girls drop out of school because of
pregnancy, illnesses, not having access to primary needs and many more.( Connell R 2009).i
think critical theory can solve this issue of gender inequalities in schools by advising curriculum
developers to think critically about the content they teach kids and how the content will affect the
people being taught. Also they can start balancing the content of study for this kids for it to reduce
the difference.

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4. Reference list
Cobuild, C. 2010. Advanced Illustrated Dictionary. Harper Collins Publishers Ltd.: Great
Britain:121-143
Connell R. 2009. Gender Cambridge: policy: 56-61
Hornby A. S. 2003. Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary. Oxford University Press: New York:85-
97
Lerner, G. 1989. The Creation of Patriarchy. Oxford University Press: New York:212-221
Mikell, G. “African Feminism: Toward a New Politics of Representation”, Feminist Studies, 21, 2
(1995): 405-424
Tuana, Nancy. 1993. The Less Noble Sex: Scientific, Religious, and Philosophical Conceptions
of Woman’s Nature. Bloomington ; Indianapolis: Indiana University Press
Tangwa, Godfrey. 1993. ‘ The Other Side of Anglophone Writing’. In Lyonga, N., Breitinger, E. ;
Butake, B. (eds) Anglophone Cameroon Writing. Bayreuth: Bayreuth African Studies 30, pp. 166-
171.
Weir, J. 2007 “Chiefly Women and Women’s Leadership in Pre-Colonial Southern Africa”, in
Women in South African History: Basus’iimbokodo, bawel’imilambo/they remove boulders and
cross rivers, N. Gasa, ed. (Cape Town: Human Sciences Research Council, 2007): 8-12.

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