A Pedagogy of Provocation: Teaching <em>Troubling Women’s Studies</em>

  • Kate Bride Faculty of Education, York University

Abstract

This article focuses on the 2004 publication, Troubling Women’s Studies: Pasts, Presents and Possibilities. In 2005, a colleague and I used Troubling Women’s Studies in our graduate feminist theory course, and this analysis highlights student responses to the book with a particular focus on epistemology, pedagogy and identity. My rationale for making the book central is that when students study Troubling Women’s Studies, they often confront their expectations of the discipline which has perhaps been idealized by them. Through questioning not only the power, but also the limitations, of foundational narratives in women’s studies, it is possible that one might undergo a loss of attachment (or at least a critical encounter with an attachment that may engender a loss). In this regard, I reflect upon how the work of teaching and learning Troubling Women's Studies produces such losses and can be productive for re-animating the field.

Résumé

Cet article porte sur la publication de Troubling Women’s Studies: Pasts, Presents and Possibilities, en 2004. En 2005, un collègue et moi avons utilisé Troubling Women's Studies dans notre cours gradué sur la théorie féministe, et cette analyse met en évidence les réponses estudiantines sur le livre, avec une attention particuliére sur l’épistémologie, la pédagogie et l'identité. J'ai voulu rendre le livre central au cours, car lorsque les étudiants étudient Troubling Women’s Studies, ils sont souvent confrontés â leurs attentes sur la discipline qu'ils ont peut-être idéalisée. En questionnant non seulement le pouvoir, mais aussi les limites des narratives fondamentales en études sur les femmes, il est possible de perdre son attache (ou du moins confronter une attache pouvant potentiellement résulter en une perte). À cet égard, je réfléchis à la manière dont le travail d'enseignement et d'apprentissage de Troubling Women's Studies produit de telles pertes et peut être productif à la réanimation de la discipline.

Author Biography

Kate Bride, Faculty of Education, York University
Kate Bride is a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Faculty of Education at York University in Toronto. She completed her PhD in the Faculty of Education at Memorial University and taught in the Women’s Studies Department at Memorial for eight years. Guided by cultural studies, loss and remembrance studies, and post-foundational pedagogies, her current work focuses on the performance of the public memorial to violent, and politically charged, deaths in Canada.
Published
2012-05-17