Boys and girls come out to play: making masculinities and femininities in school playgrounds

Epstein, Debbie; Kehily, Mary; Mac an Ghaill, Mairtin and Redman, Peter (2001). Boys and girls come out to play: making masculinities and femininities in school playgrounds. Men and Masculinities, 4(2) pp. 158–172.

URL: http://jmm.sagepub.com/cgi/content/abstract/4/2/15...

Abstract

This article is based on the ethnographic study of children's play at break time in two contrasting primary schools in north London. Play in the two schools was differently gendered, at least partly because of the different organization of the playground. The article will argue that children will use the means available to them to construct gender in their playgrounds and that this will frequently involve the reproduction of hegemonic cultural identities and relations of power. However, the article will go on to argue that local interventions at the level of the individual school can and do bring into question such identities and power relations, in the process making available to children ways of being that are more open to possibility and difference.

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