The major assumption underlying this study is that gender refers to the cultural construction of sexual differences. Culture is understood as a set of meanings or interiorised symbolic shapes and mental structures that produce and reproduce social identities when exteriorized (Gimenez, 2000). This notion of gender does not dissociate culture from the social subjects who produce it, use it or consume it.
There is neither culture without individuals nor individuals without culture. All cultural manifestations are related to a space of identity (Gimenez, 2009). Within this framework, social groups –such as teachers– are raised in a culture in which gender is socially constructed and perceived, according to a historical context that creates a territorial identity. Hence, when teachers practice their profession, they are likely to inculcate and reproduce their own perceptions of gender in their pupils.
Ewa Pająk-Ważna, Iwona Ocetkiewicz