Roma women’s higher education participation: whose responsibility?
journal contributionposted on 2023-06-09, 04:14 authored by Tamsin Hinton-SmithTamsin Hinton-Smith, Emily DanversEmily Danvers, Tanja Jovanovic
There are striking gaps between Roma and non-Roma higher education (HE) participation rates, with less than 1% of Roma possessing a tertiary-level qualification [United Nations Development Programme, World Bank and European Commission. 2011a. “The Situation of Roma in 11 EU Member States.” Accessed 3 April 2015. http://issuu.com/undp_in_europe_cis/docs/_roma_at_a_glance_web/1#download]. As the Decade of Roma Inclusion (2005–2015) closes, this renders the present a salient moment to reflect on Roma students’ HE experiences. Widening educational access for marginalised groups raises specific questions about where responsibility for doing so lies – with tensions between individualised articulations of raising aspiration and notions of collective responsibility framed in a social justice agenda. Drawing on interviews with five Roma women students, this paper unpacks the contradictions between desiring access to HE for individual self-betterment and concurrent pulls towards educating for the wider benefit of ‘improving’ Roma communities. Using Ahmed’s [2012. On Being Included: Racism and Diversity in Institutional Life. Durham, North Carolina: Duke University Press] work on institutional belonging, we explore the specifically gendered nature of these narratives in how ‘doubly’ marginalised bodies are positioned as outsiders, in receipt of an educational gift.
- Accepted version
JournalGender and Education
PublisherTaylor & Francis
Department affiliated with
- Education Publications
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