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‘You are just an idiot for not doing any physical activity right now’: Pre-service Health and Physical Education teachers’ constructions of fatness
School of Education, University of New England, Australia.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-3572-4976
School of Social Science, The University of Queensland, Australia.
2016 (English)In: European Physical Education Review, ISSN 1356-336X, E-ISSN 1741-2749, Vol. 22, no 4, p. 465-478Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Research among former Physical Education (PE) school students has demonstrated how fat phobia in PE classes is oppressive and makes it extremely difficult for most students to develop positive subjectivities. This study explores how a group of pre-service Health and Physical Education (HPE) specialist teachers from an Australian university construct fatness discourses. Taking a Foucauldian perspective, focusing particularly on the concepts of surveillance and normalisation, this paper explores the dominant discourses that pre-service HPE specialist teachers construct about fatness. Semi-structured, in-depth interviews (three interviews per participant) were conducted with 14 students (11 females and three males) aged between 18 and 26 at the time of the first interview. The results of a content analysis of the interview data suggest that students generally tend to classify certain bodies as ‘decent’ and ‘normal’, implying the existence of ‘indecent’ and ‘abnormal’ bodies. Participants also expressed a paternalistic approach and moral judgments towards people they considered to be fat. The results suggest that HPE specialist teachers have certain constructions of fatness that could be explored in their undergraduate degrees so as to minimise any possible ramifications for their teaching.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Sage Publications, 2016. Vol. 22, no 4, p. 465-478
Keywords [en]
Pre-service Health and Physical Education specialist teachers, fatness, normalisation, surveillance, judgments, paternalism
National Category
Educational Sciences
Research subject
Sports Science
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-70829DOI: 10.1177/1356336X15617446ISI: 000386010000004Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-84991735180OAI: oai:DiVA.org:oru-70829DiVA, id: diva2:1273093
Available from: 2018-12-20 Created: 2018-12-20 Last updated: 2019-01-08Bibliographically approved

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Varea, Valeria

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
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  • vancouver
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