Feminist teaching and the older nurse: the journey from resistance through anger to hope



Some of the material presented in the journals of mature student registered nurses in two nursing research methodology courses are analysed The classes were taught from a critical feminist perspective, that is, gender, race, sexual orientation and class issues were addressed as the science of ideas was explored The students kept journals of their experiences throughout the process While this was not a ‘research’ project in the usual sense of the word, material evolved which was primarily an evaluation of my teaching approach and their responses to it Excerpts of this material were kept as they provide rich data providing insights into teaching strategies Students cannot be identified in this analysis It was found that, initially, most resisted the ideas of feminist theory, research and praxis As the classes progressed, many feelings were of anger about the oppression they had experienced in the past at work and personally but had not understood Finally, towards the end of term, many students expressed hope that they would be able to bring about some social change within the profession as a result of the ideas discussed in classes However, several students remained unconvinced that feminism was the way to evoke change