Handbook

True to Age, True to Gender

What adult educators and programme developers should know about older women’s gender capital, social issues, and values

INDEX

True to Age, True to Gender. What adult educators and programme developers should know about older women’s gender capital, social issues and values

Publisher:

Editors: Dušana Findeisen, Urška Majaron

Authors: Dušana Findeisen, Urška Majaron, Oana Dău-Gașpar, Alina-Oana Zamoșteanu, Daniel Muranyi, Doris Breaz, Mirna Fusaro, Giulia Sfreddo, Luísa Oliveira, Cecília Pinto, Christina Harms, Iryna Protsenko, Rosine Dotsey, Karine Duperret

Reviewers: Prof. Dr. Nives Ličen, Dr. Ana Krajnc, Professor Emerita

Proof-reader: Natalie Asmussen

Design:

©:

True to Age, True to Gender was co-funded by the European Commission

CIP

ISBN

Introduction

  • Module 1
    OLDER PEOPLE, OLDER WOMEN AND THEIR ENGAGEMENT
  • Module 2
    THE LONG MARCH TOWARDS RIGHTS, EQUALITY AND EUROPEAN VALUES
  • Module 3
    LITTLE MANUAL ABOUT GENDER
  • Module 4
    AGEISM AND SEXISM IN THE LIVES OF OLDER WOMEN
  • Module 5
    NO SHAME ABOUT OLDER FEMALE BODIES!
  • Module 6
    OLDER WOMEN AND GENDER EQUALITY IN THE PROGRAMMES OF OLDER ADULT EDUCATION
  • Module 7
    ICT METHODS FOR GENDER EQUALITY

Annex I: Histories of belittled women

Annex II: Conceptual Background

True to age, true to gender, TAG is an Erasmus+ project co-funded by the European Commission. It deals with gender capital, contributed by female learners to programmes of older adult education.

We will begin the Handbook by asking some essential questions.

Are adult educators, who are involved in older adult education, ready to identify and include women’s gendered experience, their social issues, and their values into educational programmes they develop for them?

Are adult educators aware of their duty to empower older learners in general and older female learners in particular? And if so, how can they demonstrate their willingness to do it?

Finally, to what extent do gendered values, i.e. women’s values, overlap with fundamental and universal European values?

Now, the educators’ task is not reduced solely to the transmission of disciplinary knowledge and their role is not limited solely to the facilitation of their learners’ learning. They should empower older leaners whenever possible by including their gendered capital in the programme, by addressing gender equality, by pointing at  old age and denigrating  social stereotypes about old age and gender.

Adult educators are concerned with values and changing attitudes. In relation to social values, each society (European societies included) looks back upon its own history, deriving its own set of values from it. Adult educators should also remember that values are interconnected. If one of them is weak, the others become vulnerable as well. An example of this is poor gender equality in a country where male politicians make decisions about women’s bodies (interruption of pregnancy, to name one). Additionally, democracy is threatened when the government does not respect the rule of law. And peace is threatened when a large share of GDP is invested in weapons and military force, and a smaller amount is invested in education and science. Values have a great impact on decision-making, commitment, behaviour, actions and culture.

Moreover, the experience of the project partners has shown that only few Europeans could name with certainty the most basic “European values,” those from which all other values of the European Union are derived.

Additionally, values, be they individual or social, are not stable. On one hand, which women’s social values are important in today’s European societies and on the other hand how do basic European values (universal human rights; democratic principles; principles of the rule of law; separation of politics and religion; judgment based on reason, the human being as a measure of all things) meet them? Today’s Europeans think and act in a humanistic manner, i.e. rationally, secularly, by observing the rule of law, democratically and respectfully protecting human rights. But, are basic European values and rights applied equally to men and women?

Women’s values can be supported by discussing the issues affecting their gender. Thus, those issues are the topics of the modules of this Handbook and those of a corresponding True to Age, True to Gender blended course for adult educators.

Each Module has a short, catchy title followed by a longer subtitle. Furthermore, each module begins with an introduction explaining the topic of the module, its objectives and its meaning. This is followed by the titles of three units under the heading Module in a nutshell. Adult educators and older learners are systematically challenged to identify important theses in the Module and discuss them.

There are seven modules and two annexes in this Handbook, all written in English. Only the modules will be translated into the different national languages.

The Editors


MODULES

Gerda Taro
1910 - 1937

Pioneer of war photography
Gerda Taro, nee Gerta Pohorylle, was born in Stuttgart and educated in Leipzig, Germany. As she is from a Jewish family, she flees from the Nazis to Paris in 1933. There she lives a bohemian lifestyle with her friend Ruth Cerf and eventually meets Endre Ernő Friedmann, better known today as Robert Capa. Together, they start documenting the Spanish Civil War in 1935, after Gerda had invented their alter egos in order to better sell Endre's and her own pictures. Inspired by their own political convictions, they only take pictures of the the fight of the republican troops against the rebellious franquist troops. Both of them try to be as close to the action as possible - a goal which eventually led to Gerda's death. Despite the fact that her pictures only cover 1 year of the war, her pictures are those that went around the world. Together with Robert Capa and with David Seymour, she developed modern war photography as we know it today during this short period of time. Since she officially was Capa's agent and he sold many of her pictures as his own, it took until the 2000s until people began to recognize her as an artist in her own right rather than only his partner: In 2007, the so-called Mexican Suitcase was found in Mexico City, a suitcase containing thousands of negatives believed lost by Capa, Taro and Seymour. Since then, many photographs originally attributed to Capa are known to have been taken by Gerda. However, during her short life, Taro was well known and when she was killed in 1937 by a tank, - she was only 26 - thousands of people attended her funeral in Paris. The funeral procession, led by Pablo Neruda and Louis Aragon, became a demonstration against fascism.

Marie-Claire Chevalier
1955 - 2022

The one whose trial for illegal abortion changed the law against abortion in France
In 1971, Marie-Claire Chevalier was 16 years old when she became pregnant after being raped by a boy two years older than her in high school. The young woman asked her mother to help her have an abortion. The mother turned to an underground doctor, but her daughter suffered a hemorrhage that forced her to the hospital. Her rapist, arrested for stealing a car, decides to turn her in against his own freedom. She is directly accused, as are four other women, including her mother, because in 1971 the voluntary termination of a pregnancy was illegal in France and punishable by six months to two years in prison. She was then convicted at the Bobigny trial and all were defended by lawyer Gisèle Halimi. Gisèle Halimi made of this trial and of Marie-Claire Chevalier a political symbol for the right to abortion. The case will forever mark French history and symbolize real progress for women's rights. Extremely mediatized, the trial closely followed by many personalities ends on a brilliant victory. Three years later this judgement, things started to move. This event contributed to the adoption of the Veil law and the legalization of abortion in France in 1975.

Having suffered greatly from this trial, she attempted suicide. Then, she chose to return to anonymity by changing her name. At her death, she received tributes from the President of the Republic, Emmanuel Macron and feminist associations.

Maria Lejárraga
1874 – 1974

She was writing and her husband harvesting the glory, fame and money!
Writer, feminist, deputy, polyglot and socialist who opposed to the death penalty and legal prostitution. She advocated for education, work and equal rights for women in Spain. A very open-minded and visionary woman who had to pay a high price imposed by her gender.

María Lejárraga comes from the region of La Rioja from an economically stable middle class family. She was able to receive good education and became a teacher. During her teaching career she discovered her passion for writing. She was very talented and ready to share her ideas and stories with the world. But, that´s where she bumped into a big obstacle. At the beginning of the XX century being a female writer was seen as immoral work, especially for an educator. If she had risked meeting her goals, she could have lost her teaching job. She found a solution to this problem in her marriage by publishing her works under her husband's name. So, she was writing and waiting at home and he was the one receiving praise and applause at the premiers of the plays. Before dying, her husband confirmed the rumours circulating in theatre circles that she was the true author of his works.
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Maria Lejárraga
1874 – 1974

She was writing and her husband harvesting the glory, fame and money!
Writer, feminist, deputy, polyglot and socialist who opposed to the death penalty and legal prostitution. She advocated for education, work and equal rights for women in Spain. A very open-minded and visionary woman who had to pay a high price imposed by her gender.

María Lejárraga comes from the region of La Rioja from an economically stable middle class family. She was able to receive good education and became a teacher. During her teaching career she discovered her passion for writing. She was very talented and ready to share her ideas and stories with the world. But, that´s where she bumped into a big obstacle. At the beginning of the XX century being a female writer was seen as immoral work, especially for an educator. If she had risked meeting her goals, she could have lost her teaching job. She found a solution to this problem in her marriage by publishing her works under her husband's name. So, she was writing and waiting at home and he was the one receiving praise and applause at the premiers of the plays. Before dying, her husband confirmed the rumours circulating in theatre circles that she was the true author of his works.
continue reading

Maria Lejárraga
1874 – 1974

She was writing and her husband harvesting the glory, fame and money!
Writer, feminist, deputy, polyglot and socialist who opposed to the death penalty and legal prostitution. She advocated for education, work and equal rights for women in Spain. A very open-minded and visionary woman who had to pay a high price imposed by her gender.

María Lejárraga comes from the region of La Rioja from an economically stable middle class family. She was able to receive good education and became a teacher. During her teaching career she discovered her passion for writing. She was very...
continue reading