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Women’s Ways of Knowing Tacy Costanzo November 2004.

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Presentation on theme: "Women’s Ways of Knowing Tacy Costanzo November 2004."— Presentation transcript:

1 Women’s Ways of Knowing Tacy Costanzo November 2004

2 The Development of Self, Voice, and Mind  By Mary Belenky, Blythe Clinchy, Nancy Goldberger, Jill Tarule  Women did not fit into traditional development theory –which was based on research done predominately on white men of privilege

3 Theory Basis  Built on William Perry’s Theory of Intellectual Development  Also Kohlberg’s Theory of Moral Development  And Gilligan’s Theory of Women’s Moral Development

4 Research Methods  135 young women from various social, ethnic, economic, educational backgrounds  Extensive interviews on self-image, morality, learning style, life experiences  Themes emerged from their stories  Epistemological patterns noted  Five perspectives described

5 Five Epistemological Perspectives  Silence  Received Knowledge  Subjective Knowledge  Procedural Knowledge  Constructed Knowledge

6 Silence  All authority over knowledge exists outside one’s self  Disconnection between the known and the knower  Only broken by validation of the individual  Characterized by low self esteem, lack of self worth

7 Received Knowledge  Knowledge is dualistic, either right or wrong, black or white  There is only one correct answer to each question  The recipient, not the creator of knowledge  Requires external validation to believe in self

8 Subjective Knowledge  The truth finally resides within  The power of knowing is internal  Analyzing the past to understand the future  A new voice, barely a whisper, begins to speak

9 Procedural Knowledge  Ability to objectively express and receive knowledge (two kinds) –Separate knowledge is analytical and reasonable, critical thinking –Connected knowing is based on intuition and ‘gut feeling’  Begins integrating separate and connected knowing into a single voice

10 Constructed Knowledge  Assimilate and integrate objective and subjective knowledge  All knowledge is constructed, one becomes part of their own knowledge  Believe in another’s beliefs, while not adopting them  Hear another’s voice without losing their own voice  Making a space for one’s self where her voice will always be heard

11 Major Findings  Women think differently than men  Women need to know that they are already smart in order to learn  Women acquire knowledge more readily through experience than instruction  Validation of self by a women’s community fuels further development and fosters learning  Women feel their way into learning and make sense of their world from the inside out

12 Theory to Practice  Teach the teachers –Understand students’ development level  Let them try their wings –Support the journey of self discovery  Engage the students in the process of their own education –Facilitate ‘active’ learning environments

13 Future Research  Larger, more diverse population  Strive to eliminate gender & cultural bias  Explore new research methodologies  Be open-minded to see and hear what hasn’t been seen or heard before  Longitudinal studies on perspective shifts Click to finish

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