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Elementary Education and Teaching | Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies | Junior High, Intermediate, Middle School Education and Teaching


This research addresses the complexities of identity development of elementary and middle school preservice literacy teachers during their teacher education program using a poststructural feminist theoretical lens. This research investigated two questions: 1) How do preservice teachers develop their identity as teachers of literacy in the midst of authoritative discourses? 2) What kinds of strategies and discourses do preservice literacy teachers use to negotiate the competing discourses of literacy during student teaching? The results indicated that the identities of the preservice literacy teachers were in transition during their teacher education program and authoritative discourses were at work constituting their subjectivities throughout this process. These discourses were heard as the preservice literacy teachers used deconstructive and reconstructive literacy discourses and strategies from their personal literacy biographies, literacy coursework, and student teaching practices. Their agency as literacy teachers was demonstrated through the strategies they used to negotiate and perform their identities during student teaching—working within and outside of the literacy structures of their cooperating teachers’ classrooms. The research also indicated the power of time and space in relation with others, as a means for continued identity transformation.

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Published Version


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© 2008 (individual papers), the author(s).
© 2008 (selection and editorial matter) Common Ground.
All rights reserved. Apart from fair use for the purposes of study, research, criticism or review as permitted under the Copyright Act (Australia), no part of this work may be reproduced without written permission from the publisher. For permissions and other inquiries, please contact cg-support@commongroundpublishing.com.

Original Citation

Mindy Legard Larson
Preservice Literacy Teachers in Transition: Identity as Subjectivity.
The International Journal of Learning, 2005, volume 15, issue 6, pages 203-210



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