The University of Southampton
University of Southampton Institutional Repository

‘It doesn’t take much force’ – The negotiation of gender by two women motor mechanic apprentices through the biographical lens

‘It doesn’t take much force’ – The negotiation of gender by two women motor mechanic apprentices through the biographical lens
‘It doesn’t take much force’ – The negotiation of gender by two women motor mechanic apprentices through the biographical lens
The marked and persistent gender segregation in apprenticeship has been well documented. The social construction of ‘male’ and ‘female’ jobs is a key factor in the gendered patterns evident in career choice. Research on young women who have chosen careers in male-dominated occupations risks constructing them as ‘Other’, typically concluding that rather than challenging the gender binary, the women would reinforce it, echoing ‘tomboy’ identities according to which girls are aligning themselves with boys whilst devaluing femininity.

Based on biographical interviews, this paper explores the role of gender in the career decision-making of one German and one English woman motor mechanic apprentice. It illustrates the strongly normative but highly contextual nature of gender as the two women negotiate identities in their quests to live ‘liveable lives’. It will be argued that the rich and multi-faceted experiences of these two young women belie stereotypical accounts of gender, suggesting acceptable ways of being in male workspaces.
Gender identity, apprenticeship, biography, tomboy
1363-6820
Brockmann, Michaela
f8b5697f-f9fc-4645-9bd5-a78af20d0ea5
Brockmann, Michaela
f8b5697f-f9fc-4645-9bd5-a78af20d0ea5

Brockmann, Michaela (2020) ‘It doesn’t take much force’ – The negotiation of gender by two women motor mechanic apprentices through the biographical lens. Journal of Vocational Education and Training. (doi:10.1080/13636820.2020.1734061).

Record type: Article

Abstract

The marked and persistent gender segregation in apprenticeship has been well documented. The social construction of ‘male’ and ‘female’ jobs is a key factor in the gendered patterns evident in career choice. Research on young women who have chosen careers in male-dominated occupations risks constructing them as ‘Other’, typically concluding that rather than challenging the gender binary, the women would reinforce it, echoing ‘tomboy’ identities according to which girls are aligning themselves with boys whilst devaluing femininity.

Based on biographical interviews, this paper explores the role of gender in the career decision-making of one German and one English woman motor mechanic apprentice. It illustrates the strongly normative but highly contextual nature of gender as the two women negotiate identities in their quests to live ‘liveable lives’. It will be argued that the rich and multi-faceted experiences of these two young women belie stereotypical accounts of gender, suggesting acceptable ways of being in male workspaces.

Text
JVET manuscript accepted January 2020 - Accepted Manuscript
Download (71kB)
Text
Brockmann JVET 2020 - Version of Record
Restricted to Repository staff only
Request a copy

More information

Accepted/In Press date: 16 February 2020
e-pub ahead of print date: 1 March 2020
Additional Information: Publisher Copyright: © 2020, © 2020 The Vocational Aspect of Education Ltd.
Keywords: Gender identity, apprenticeship, biography, tomboy

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 439160
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/439160
ISSN: 1363-6820
PURE UUID: 5d447b50-ce7d-483b-9979-789311536a1d
ORCID for Michaela Brockmann: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0003-4978-1883

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 06 Apr 2020 16:30
Last modified: 08 Sep 2022 04:01

Export record

Altmetrics

Download statistics

Downloads from ePrints over the past year. Other digital versions may also be available to download e.g. from the publisher's website.

View more statistics

Atom RSS 1.0 RSS 2.0

Contact ePrints Soton: eprints@soton.ac.uk

ePrints Soton supports OAI 2.0 with a base URL of http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/cgi/oai2

This repository has been built using EPrints software, developed at the University of Southampton, but available to everyone to use.

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive cookies on the University of Southampton website.

×