UBC Theses and Dissertations

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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Politics of minority interest / politics of difference and antinormativity : "positive change" and building "queer-friendly" schools in Vancouver, British Columbia Hansman, Glen Philip


This project examines “positive change” with regard to queer/LGBTTITQetc. education-activism in Vancouver, British Columbia directed at building what has been described as “queer-friendly schools” through the development and implementation of policy, as well as activist work connected to those efforts. I employ elements of autoethnography and participatory research by documenting and analyzing my education-activist work in this context and that of others with whom I have done this work. I situate this project within the broader context of the education system and queer/LGBTTITQetc. education-activist efforts in British Columbia. In the process, I problematize what is meant by or capable of activism and “positive change.” As demonstrated in the literature review, various understandings of sexuality, gender, activism, educational leadership, and “positive change” are available to inform queer/LGBTTITQetc. education-activism. This thesis examines how these understandings sit in tension with the practicalities, limitations, and contradictions of activist engagement at the school district level of a complex, politicized public school system. My engagement with the literature, documentation of the practical work, and exploration of a number of guiding questions with the project’s participants comprise the bulk of this project.

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