When Discourse is Hijacked: An Implicit and Performative Resistance Strategy to Gender Equality in Higher Education: An Implicit and Performative Resistance Strategy to Gender Equality in Higher Education

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Abstract

Following a qualitative analysis of interviews with 16 current and former social scientists at the University of Iceland, we argue for the existence of an individual and implicit form of resistance to gender equality that we call “hijacking the discourse.” In a neoliberal culture of higher education that favors individual emancipation in an academic marketplace, a collective understanding of inequality as rooted in larger systems of power is in danger of becoming diluted. In modern universities, this is sometimes expressed through performative and inadequately implemented gender equality policies. The hijacking of gender equality discourse among academic knowledge workers echo this performativity of existing policies and maintains the aura of gender equality necessitated by a neoliberal academic culture.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)143-165
Number of pages23
JournalJournal of Women and Gender in Higher Education
Volume14
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 4 May 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the Seventh Framework Programme [611737].

Publisher Copyright:
© NASPA 2021.

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