Understanding teacher identity within subjectivity and agency: Implications for an African pedagogical advancement

David Matsepe, Mugwena Maluleke, Michael Cross

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The study is premised on the assumption that identities are not static entities, but forms of selves subject to change with time and space in that the study of teacher identity is subject to different interpretations because it involves processes, experiences, and practices which are attached to historical circumstances of individuals who become subjects. Given the multiple factors exist about what it is to be a teacher, individuals face with multiple possibilities available in the contexts and the extent to which they are capable of producing and influencing their own contexts to suit their expectations is determine by the extent to which the contexts they inhabit support multiple subjectivities which are influential to their own identities. The aim of the study is to explore how images, metaphors, and cultural myths negotiate individual experiences in the identity formation. The main argument put forward in this study is that the study takes seriously into account not only the external barriers (structural factors) but also the individual experiences of constructing teacher identities particularly in the domains of subjectivity and agency, an approach that tends to neglect identity construction as critical factor.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)121-132
Number of pages12
JournalAfrican Renaissance
Publication statusPublished - 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • Agency
  • Cultural Myths
  • Identity
  • Images
  • Metaphors
  • Subjectivity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Development
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Public Administration
  • Political Science and International Relations


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