Discourses of Teacher Professionalism: “From Within” and “From Without” or Two Sides of the Same Coin?

Pamela Osmond-Johnson


Drawing on data from a larger doctoral study, this paper specifically explores influences on the discourses of professionalism amongst a sample of highly engaged members of the Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario (ETFO). Based on the assumption that discourse takes shape within a highly politicized system of socialization where language plays a significant role in the maintenance of particular power structures and the cultures that support them (Hilferty, 2004), the case suggests that the professionalism discourses of teachers and their unions and those of government are not necessarily as mutually exclusive as they are often presented in the literature. 


teacher professionalism; teacher federations; discourse analysis

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