To read this content please select one of the options below:

Vulnerable practitioners: fictional narratives affecting masculine teacher identity

Ian Davis (Griffith Institute of Educational Research, Griffith University, Brisbane, Australia)

Qualitative Research Journal

ISSN: 1443-9883

Article publication date: 4 November 2014




The purpose of this paper is to explore how fictional narratives help us envision ways of constructing the identity as teaching professionals. Furthermore, how encounters with fictional narratives and the absorption of their structures and ideologies can dictate how the author perceive ourselves, and others.


The pedagogy of teacher education relies heavily on narratised models of instruction such as Critical Reflective Practice (CRP). The purposefully traumatic aspects of CRP are designed to trouble the sense of self. I suggest here that this creates a period of subjective vulnerability in the pre-service teacher practitioner.


This paper examines the response to traumatic learning events focusing on how literary tropes and their encompassing ideologies become a powerful yet regressive force in restabilising the professional identity and galvanising the personal subjectivity.

Research limitations/implications

Data for this paper has been drawn from the Teaching Men research project that focused on a cohort of male teachers, from Australia and the UK working within TAFE/FE environments all of whom had recently become teachers.


This paper addresses a parallel concern: at a point of subjective vulnerability, a term coined as part of this analysis, how do fictional representations of male teachers impact on the construction and practice of teachers in the development of their professional identities? And how can the author devise a structure with which to interpret such activity?



Davis, I. (2014), "Vulnerable practitioners: fictional narratives affecting masculine teacher identity", Qualitative Research Journal, Vol. 14 No. 3, pp. 228-242.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2014, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Related articles