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A gendered educational agenda : what's wrong with 10 Things I Hate About You?

By Erica Hateley


Both William Shakespeare's play The Taming of the Shrew (1593) and the film 10 thing I hate About You (Gil Junger, 1999) contain tropes of gender and education and gendered education, and both represent and perform 'education'. That is, they depict characters undergoing a range of educational experiences and in turn educate their audience about what it means to be educated appropriately. It seems fitting then that these pairng of texts has been popular with high school teachers who, more often than not, use them as ways into teaching Shakespeare to contemporary adolescents. I suggest that the play-film pairing can be more productively introduced into the classroom as texts that offer critical readers the opportunity to contest the values of education and gender contatined within them, rather than as tools to reintroduce outdated notions of gendered agency and cultural authority. Indeed it is precisely because 10 Things is unequivocally a romantic comedy that aims to work within the audience's comfort zone that we must seriously interrogate the cultural politics of gender and education it promotes

Topics: 200503 British and Irish Literature, 190204 Film and Television, 130308 Gender Sexuality and Education, Shakespeare, Gender, Film
Publisher: Australian Teachers of Media
Year: 2010
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