Equity, Power, and Capabilities: Constructions of Gender in a Tanzanian Secondary School

This article aims to move beyond issues of access to schooling for girls to investigate the constructions of gender through a macro-level analysis of policy and micro-level analysis of practice at a secondary school in Tanzania. State-sanctioned school texts are examined, as well as classroom discourse and teachers’ understandings of gender, to show how both “gender as equity” and “gender as power relations” perspectives interact in schools. While there have been advances in the recognition of gender as a structuring force within schools and society, this article contends that the capabilities approach adds value to these views by considering how gendered texts and discourses may still be limiting the capabilities of female and male students in Tanzanian secondary schools.