Language Teachers’ Gendered Identity in Ideologized Spaces: A Narrative Analysis of Their Positioning

Document Type : Research Article


1 Department of English Language Teaching, Faculty of Humanities, IAU, West Tehran Branch, Tehran, Iran

2 Department of English Language Teaching, Faculty of Humanities, Tarbiat Modares University, Tehran, Iran



Understanding the nature of language teachers’ gendered identity is of significance due to its influential role in the development of their professional identity.  However, the number of studies conducted on this area has been rare. The current case study investigated language teacher gendered identity formation to address this gap, focusing on 3 dimensions of gender-based constraints, gender-based discrimination, and gender-based attitudes toward the teaching profession. To analyze the data, content analysis was conducted on the narratives of a male and a female EFL teacher based on 3 levels of coding: (a) open coding, (b) axial coding, and (c) selective coding (Riazi, 2016). Results indicated that the participants experienced a completely opposite professional status based on their gender and the impact of the dominant gender-based ideologies and patriarchal structure in their society. Whereas the female teacher suffered from the existing constraints and discrimination resulting from her gender, the male teacher was more concerned about his economic status as men are breadwinners based on their social norms. This study has pedagogical implications for teachers to be aware of the dynamic nature of their identity and for policymakers, teacher educators, and institutional administrators who need to be cognizant of the impact of sociocultural norms on the formation of language teachers’ gendered identity.