An Androcentric Analysis Of Gender-Stereo Types In Pakistani Language Textbooks

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Dr. Samina Qayyum , Dr. Salma Qayyum , Najma Qayyum


Prescribed textbooks and students are closely connected. Textbooks are main learning resources as they present the world view and construct learners’ perspectives. They not only reflect local culture but also disseminate ideological values through set discursive practices and thereby aid in maintaining the status quo. Pakistani society is essentially a male-dominating society. Male hegemony is naturalized through manifested or non-manifested techniques. In pre and early teens, male and female adolescents do not have any clear world view. Textbooks are absolute truth for them. In language text books, the content and characters become their role models and a source of inspiration. Selection of content in textbooks is crucial. This study investigates how male dominance in Pakistan is perpetuated through textbooks. It also explores how females are either presented as submissive, stereo-typed creatures or there is an absolute non-representation of female role models. Fairclough’s model of Critical Discourse Analysis has been used as the theoretical framework for evaluating the selection of authors and content in the language textbooks of Matric prescribed by Punjab textbook board. Textual analysis is used as the main analytical tool by incorporating some concepts from pragmatics including presuppositions, implicatures, assumptions, foregrounding, representation, inclusion, exclusion, comparison and contrast. The analyses reveal naturalization of androcentrism through selection of male authors and male-centered content. Punjab Textbooks have thus been used as hegemonic devices for forming the mindset of younger generation and transforming their personalities according to the male-centric hidden agenda.           

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