This documentary study aims to inquire into current debates on the nature of gender and, in particular, the category of ‘woman’, and their implications for critical and feminist pedagogies. In particular, I am interested in exploring the status of feminist pedagogy in what have been referred to as “post-feminist” (Hollows & Moseley, 2006; Whelehan, 1995) and “post-queer” (Noble, 2006; Richardson, McLaughlin & Casey, 2006) times. What is the nature of contemporary scholarship in feminist pedagogy? How does this scholarship address current debates on gender? How does feminist pedagogy intersect with scholarship in queer theory, women’s studies, and gender studies? How does feminist scholarship respond to assertions that we live in a “post-feminist” time? How might we rethink or revisit what feminist pedagogy can offer our conceptualizations of educational experience and the field of teacher education?
Interestingly, there is an obvious break in publishing on feminist pedagogy between works published in the mid- to late-1990s and those published in the last five years. My study of the literature will try to make sense of these patterns in publication and consider whether and how they demonstrate similar shifts and breaks in theoretical frameworks for thinking about gender, feminism, and feminist pedagogy. It is my aim that this documentary investigation into historical and contemporary approaches to feminist pedagogy will provide a foundation from which to formulate further research questions about the qualities and uses of feminist pedagogy in contemporary educational theory and practice.