Literacy and Gender
Researching Texts, Contexts and Readers
By Gemma Moss
Routledge – 2008 – 232 pages
Why are girls outperforming boys in literacy skills in the Western education system today? To date, there have been few attempts to answer this question. Literacy and Gender sets out to redress this state of affairs by re-examining the social organization of literacy in primary schools.
In studying schooling as a social process, this book focuses on the links between literacy, gender and attainment, the role school plays in producing social difference and the changing pattern of interest in this topic both within the feminist community and beyond. Gemma Moss argues that the reason for girls’ relative success in literacy lies in the structure of schooling and in particular the role the reading curriculum plays in constructing a hierarchy of learners in class. Using fine-grained ethnographic analysis of reading in context, this book outlines methods for researching literacy as a social practice and understanding how different versions of what counts as literacy can be created in the same site.
Literacy, Gender and Attainment: Introduction 1. Literacy, Gender and the Politics of School Achievement: Explaining Educational Failure and Success 2. Studying Literacy with More than Gender in Mind 3. Literacy Events in the Context of the School: Re-Thinking How Literacy, Gender and Attainment Intertwine 4. Texts in their Context of Use: Non-Fiction Text Design and the Social Regulation of Reading in Class 5. Readers in Context Text Choice as Situated Practice 6. Gender, Literacy and Attainment: Taking Things Forward