Original Research - Special Collection: Life Orientation or Life Disorientation

Exploring understandings of sexual consent amongst Life Orientation student-teachers through intergroup dialogue

Mathabo Khau
The Journal for Transdisciplinary Research in Southern Africa | Vol 17, No 1 | a1093 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/td.v17i1.1093 | © 2021 Mathabo Khau | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 31 May 2021 | Published: 29 September 2021

About the author(s)

Mathabo Khau, Post Graduate Studies Department, Faculty of Education, Nelson Mandela University, Port Elizabeth, South Africa


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Abstract

In this article, the author reports on how intergroup dialogue was used amongst Life Orientation (LO) student-teachers to deconstruct the heteropatriarchal notions of sexual consent, in the context of gender-based violence (GBV). Three sessions of intergroup dialogue were arranged between third-year student-teachers and female survivors of GBV from a local Non-Profit Organisation (NPO) in exploring the perceptions of sexual consent, to deepen their understanding regarding the concepts of shaming, blaming and silencing that perpetuate GBV in communities. Third-year LO student-teachers engaged in dialogue with four youth survivors of GBV from a local NPO who shared their experiences of GBV and sexual consent. The heteropatriarchal views to GBV held by student-teachers were disrupted through the dialogues between the two groups thus enabling a greater understanding of sexual consent and the role played by shaming, blaming and silencing of victims in perpetuating GBV. The findings highlighted that intergroup dialogue could be a useful tool in creating norm-critical and sex-positive schools and communities.

Keywords

gender-based violence; heteronormativity; intergroup dialogue; patriarchy; sexual consent.

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