Gender and agency in history, civics, and national education textbooks of Jordan and Palestine

Samira Alayan*, Naseema Al-Khalidi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


This article analyzes history, civics, and national education textbooks used between grades seven to twelve of the Palestinian and Jordanian school systems1 from a gender perspective. It focuses on the ways in which men and women are presented within the context of the prevalent culture, which portrays men as the more superior, capable, creative, productive, and therefore dominant, and women as weaker, inferior, dominated, and thus unable to play more than minor roles. As culture affects the perceptions, desires, and ambitions of both males and females, it becomes a key factor in changing the role of women in modern society, and is developed and transferred from one generation to another. This study also emphasizes the need to identify the approaches toward gender adopted by the curricula of Jordan and Palestine, as well as the nature of the language they use. The results from the sample used in this study indicate that although the stereotyping of men and women in both the public and the private sectors varies according to school grade and subject, there is an obvious bias in favor of men.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)78-96
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Educational Media, Memory, and Society
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Gender
  • History
  • Jordan
  • National education
  • Palestine
  • Textbooks


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