Arab World English Journal (AWEJ) Vol.6. No.4 December  2015                                            Pp. 77-89

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     Making Representational Meanings of Gender Images in Malaysian School English Textbooks:
The Corpus Way
  

Kesuma A.Bakar
School of Language Studies and Linguistics
Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia,
Bangi Selangor, Malaysia

Zarina Othman
PUSAT CITRA & IKMAS
Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia
Bangi Selangor, Malaysia

Bahiyah Abdul Hamid
School of Language Studies and Linguistics
Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia
Bangi Selangor, Malaysia

Fuzirah Hashim
School of Language Studies and Linguistics
Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia
Bangi Selangor, Malaysia

 

 

 Abstract:
Images are in fact representations of reality that are also instrumental in creating imaginary relations between the participants in the image and the viewers. School textbooks are abound with visual images that sometimes can articulate more forcefully social and cultural meanings more so than written texts. This article focusses on a preliminary investigation on the making of representational meanings associated with gender and to critique the patterns of images in relation to gender stereotyping in a selected Malaysian Primary school English textbook with a data of 78 images analysed. Using Kress & van Leeuwen’s Grammar of Visual Design (2006) as our method of analysis, we identify and describe gender representations through features of narrative, cultural and biological categorization and circumstance of setting. The analysis focuses on the results of three representational meanings of participant type, relational and institutional categories with the inclusion of ethnicity. Its preliminary findings reveal a predisposition towards gender stereotyping between male and female representation.
Keywords: corpus-based study, gender stereotyping, school textbooks, social semiotics, visual analysis

 

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Kesuma A.Bakar is a senior lecturer at the School of Language Studies and Linguistics, University
Kebangsaan Malaysia. Her research interests are in Multimodal Discourse Analysis, Gender and Identity
Studies and Corpus Linguistics. She is currently conducting a multimodal research of Malaysian online
identities and has completed a research project that investigates the identity constructions of Malaysian
adolescents in personal advertisements. corpus-based study