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Type: Journal article
Title: Working-class women study social science degrees: remembering enablers and detractors
Author: Fraser, H.
Michell, D.
Beddoe, E.
Jarldorn, M.
Citation: Higher Education Research and Development, 2016; 35(4):684-697
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Issue Date: 2016
ISSN: 0729-4360
Statement of
Heather Fraser, Dee Michell, Liz Beddoe and Michele Jarldorn
Abstract: In this article, we report on a feminist memory work project conducted with 11 working-class women in Australia. Participants responded to the question: what helps and hinders working-class women study social science degrees? The women confirmed that to succeed at university, they needed opportunities, resources, support and encouragement. We called these enablers and considered the role of ‘enlightened witnesses’ [Miller, 1997. The essential role of an enlightened witness in society. Retrieved from]. Hindering the possibility of university success were detractors of many forms including inadequate resources and social conventions that discouraged the women from study. We describe saboteurs as undermining people and forces that the women had to overcome. We found that enlightened witnesses, broadly conceptualised, go some way but not all, to mitigating detractors and saboteurs that continue to hamper fair and meritocratic access to tertiary education.
Keywords: Detractors; enablers; enlightened witnesses; higher education; saboteurs; social sciences; widening participation; working-class women
Rights: © 2016 HERDSA
RMID: 0030044927
DOI: 10.1080/07294360.2015.1137885
Appears in Collections:Education publications

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