Undressing as Normal: The Impact of Coming Out in Class

Oct. 10, 2010

Source: The Teacher Educator, Volume 45, Issue 4, pages 287 – 300. (October 2010).
(Reviewed by the Portal Team)

This auto-ethnographic narrative presents the experiences of a teacher educator who came out to his preservice teachers. The narrative documents a diversity workshop in which some teacher candidates were uncomfortable after the instructor's previously undisclosed sexuality was revealed.

Conclusion: Undressing as Normal

The author claims that preservice teachers need to understand the beliefs and practices of families and cultures that are unlike their own (Cochran-Smith, 1995; DeJean & Elsebree, 2008).
In this article, the author is trying to convey that when queer teacher educators embrace what makes them who they are, when they acknowledge how their life experiences have shaped them or suborned them, when they can help preservice teachers hear a sound where there is silence; it is only then can they become teacher educators of some consequence; it is only then that they can, in equal measure, inspire and confound, instigate, and originate.

The most effective way to work for transformation of preservice teachers is to vigilantly work for the transformation of self (Sapp, 2001a). When queer teacher educators undress as normal, preservice teachers are brought closer to essential truths of life and human existence.

Updated: Jan. 23, 2011