Foucault News

News and resources on French thinker Michel Foucault (1926-1984)

Miller, E.R., Gkonou, C. Language teacher agency, emotion labor and emotional rewards in tertiary-level English language programs (2018) System, 79, pp. 49-59.

DOI: 10.1016/j.system.2018.03.002

Research on language teacher agency and language teacher emotions has demonstrated that both are central components of teacher identity and practice. However, few researchers have explored the co-constitutive effects of agency and emotion for language teachers or the role of emotion labor in producing emotional rewards. This article addresses these underexplored components of language teaching through reporting on the findings of a qualitative study with language teachers in tertiary settings in the U.K. and the U.S. The study drew on language teachers’ questionnaire (n = 30) and semi-structured interview (n = 25) responses in identifying the most common emotions experienced by these teachers and how their relationships with students engendered emotion labor as well as emotional rewards. We consider these aspects of teacher experience in terms of discourses of teaching-as-caring and Foucault’s (1983) concept of ethical self-formation. © 2018 Elsevier Ltd

Author Keywords
Emotion labor; Ethical self-formation; Teacher agency; Teaching-as-caring

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