Nursery Rhymes and the Social-Construction of Gender Roles

Qurratulain Nasiruddin


Language, besides a mode of communication, is a powerful medium of change in a society. Through language, ideas and perceptions are communicated to people. In specific, these ideas and perceptions get strength if the language is being taught in formal educational systems such as schools. Considering the pre-operational cognitive abilities of nursery school children aged between three to seven years, this paper argues that nursery rhymes are instrumental in making and changing gender perceptions in Pakistani society. The paper evaluates certain nursery rhymes taught in both manners, formally in schools and informally at home. The rhymes are mainly in Urdu language but translation has been provided in order to make argument more comprehensible. The study has potential to be carried forward from the lens of gender studies and linguistics. However, this paper limits discussion in two main dimensions: nursery rhymes as an instrument of social change and gender roles in Pakistani society.

DOI: 10.5901/jesr.2013.v3n4p77

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Journal of Educational and Social Research ISSN 2239-978X(Print) ISSN 2240-0524(Online)

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