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Bursting the ‘childhood bubble’: reframing discourses of LGBTQ+ teachers and their students

Llewellyn, Anna

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Abstract

LGBTQ+ teachers have been noted to struggle with conflicting professional and personal subjectivities within schools, which are sites of (re)production of heteronormativity. This clash relies upon positioning LGBTQ+ as an adult activity in opposition to discourses of childhood, which are framed around protection and innocence. This research, however, took place at a time of potential change, with aspects of LGBTQ+ inclusion being present within UK schools to varying degrees. In 2020, 50 UK LGBTQ+ teachers engaged in individual semi-structured interviews. Thematic Foucauldian analysis was applied to the data to examine both the discourses produced by the teachers and the subjectivities that were navigated. Findings suggest that many teachers are able to disrupt the binaries of professional/personal and a ‘new’ teacher subjectivity emerges, that acknowledges their LGBTQ+ status. This is framed around neoliberal traits of honesty and authenticity. In relation, the binary distinction between student and teacher is navigated, and childhood is no longer discursively constructed by the teachers as innocent; instead, students are framed around their agency and social awareness. However, there is evidence that protectionist discourses of the child, and professional discourses of the teacher, are also being used to prevent LGBTQ+ inclusion, and restrict LGBTQ+ teachers.

Citation

Llewellyn, A. (2022). Bursting the ‘childhood bubble’: reframing discourses of LGBTQ+ teachers and their students. Sport, Education and Society, https://doi.org/10.1080/13573322.2022.2106203

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Jul 21, 2022
Online Publication Date Aug 4, 2022
Publication Date Aug 4, 2022
Deposit Date Aug 8, 2022
Publicly Available Date Aug 19, 2022
Journal Sport, Education and Society
Print ISSN 1357-3322
Electronic ISSN 1470-1243
Publisher Taylor and Francis Group
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
DOI https://doi.org/10.1080/13573322.2022.2106203
Public URL https://durham-repository.worktribe.com/output/1194794

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