EDUCATION AND ROMA WOMEN: SEEKING GAPS IN THE DOMINANT NARRATION THROUGH INTERGENERATIONAL APPROACH

C. Govaris, I. Giannakopoulou

University of Thessaly (GREECE)
The majority of Greek Roma lives stigmatized in the social margin. The school exclusion of the younger members of the group reproduces the condition of marginalization, which affects women more strongly. However, there are a few cases of young Roma girls who continue and complete school education. What is the reason for this change and what factors influence this positive development? This question is at the heart of our research on the educational experiences of Roma women living in Greece. Specifically, this research examines the stories of three women who belong to the same family and are one generation apart from each other - mother, daughter, granddaughter. It detects their educational routes and the ways they make sense of them, focusing mainly on the importance of intergenerational relationships in shaping educational expectations and decisions. Working with narrative analysis, we approach the ways in which the research subjects construct their identity and give meaning to their educational practices or their absence. Considering that the mother never went to school, the daughter attended some classes in primary education and continued with lifelong learning and the granddaughter came to complete secondary education and be admitted to higher education, this research examines the expectations regarding education and are inherited from one generation to the other, or their shifts and their differences over time. Focusing on education through intergeneration, the research allows us to explore experiences that contribute both to self-identification and to create a cohesive family history. This case study sheds light on aspects of the subjects internal fight for autonomy and agency, the ongoing dialogue between the individual and the family. Furthermore, it reveals the importance of the gaps in the dominant narration of the Roma community regarding education and specifically women education and proves its importance as a form of resistance.