Describing the Emperor's New Clothes: Three Myths of Educational (In-)Equity
Power in education is operationalized by creating, defining, encoding, transmitting, and evaluating claims to knowledge. Encoding power includes control over the educational curriculum and control over educational discourse which determines both the actual language of the classroom and what are going to count as educationally relevant contributions to the conversations of education. Educational power seldom resides in the entire cultural and political community. In the classroom and more informal educational settings, the use of dominant metaphors and preferred modes of cognition continue to carry political gender messages. Androcentric educational settings take a severe toll on girls and women. Educational critics who fight against colonization of girls and women in education often invoke an ideal of gender-sensitive educational equity as an alternative to patriarchal and Eurocentric patterns of domination. The North American public educational institutions replicate, generate, and strengthen the patriarchal domination of women through androcentric intellectual canons and paradigms, devaluation, harassment, and violence.