Critical Inquiry on the Body in Girls’ Physical Education Classes: A Critical Poststructural Perspective

in Journal of Teaching in Physical Education
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  • 1 New Mexico State University
  • | 2 Virginia Tech
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Drawing on poststructuralism and related theoretical perspectives, we worked in girls’ physical education classes to examine the development and implementation of a curriculum strand focusing on girls’ bodies. The purpose was to help adolescent girls name the discourses that shape their lives and regulate their bodies. We asked two major questions: What were the major tasks actually used during the enactment of the curriculum strand? and: What issues and concerns emerged for us as we enacted the strand and how did we respond? This study took place in a 7th–12th grade rural high school in the southern United States. We collected data during the 2000–2001 school year in three girls’ physical education classes. We conducted 14 sessions for each class and analyzed our data using the constant comparison method. Several issues emerged including: making the curriculum meaningful, offsetting task difficulties, sustaining ethical relationships, and lessening interference of research culture.

Oliver is with the Department of Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance, New Mexico State University, MSC 3M, Las Cruces, New Mexico. Lalik is with NVAGC Virginia Tech, Education (0362), 7054 Haycock Rd., Falls Church, VA 22043

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