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Title: Inscriptions of (in)equality : interrogating texts and practices in an Indian classroom
Author: Yunus, Reva
ISNI:       0000 0004 7431 6921
Awarding Body: University of Warwick
Current Institution: University of Warwick
Date of Award: 2018
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Inequality in and through formal school education has been part of the Indian education since it came into existence under British rule. In contemporary India this educational stratification is taking increasingly alarming and unacceptable forms even as socioeconomic disparities are on the rise. This stratification manifests itself in all aspects of education from infrastructure and facilities in schools to availability of teachers and the quality of curriculum and pedagogy in classrooms. However, there is a dearth of ethnographic work which systematically investigates students’ classroom experience, especially, work that locates this experience within larger social, economic and political logics and attends to intersecting power relations in contemporary India. This thesis offers accounts of (re)production of social relations, specifically, intersections of gender, class and caste (genderclaste), in and through education through an interrogation of classroom texts and practices. On the basis of a classroom ethnography conducted in an urban school in central India, this thesis attempts to understand how genderclaste relations inscribe various aspects of students’ classroom experience, namely, pedagogy, curriculum and what I term, the moral curriculum. Drawing upon feminist critiques of caste- and gender-based difference and discrimination, that is, Brahmanical patriarchy as well as its intersections with class relations in the urban Indian context, this thesis offers insights into how students are constructed within the dominant classroom discourse as historically specific, genderclasted subjects. Further, within the theoretical framework offered by Michel Foucault’s and Jacques Ranciere’s respective engagements with subjectivity, it also focuses on instances of students’ governmental and political subjectivation. In conclusion, this thesis argues that teachers’ class-caste distance from students and the institutionalisation of dominant genderclaste relations in schools seek to render students’ concerns, constraints and abilities invisible in the classroom. However, students assert their equality through micro narratives of resistance, contestation and survival in the classroom, thus disrupting social and educational categories (“Dalit”, “girl”, “good” student) and opening up possibilities for change.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: University of Warwick
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: LC Special aspects of education