Exploring dialectic tensions in teachers' relationships in school settings

Griselda Flores Rodriguez, University of Texas at El Paso


This study explored the feasibility of using dialectic theory to study of dialectic oppositions in teachers' school-based relationships. Employing relational dialectics as a theoretical framework, this study exposed several sets of dialectical forces emerging in teachers' relationships. 23 high school teachers were interviewed utilizing a semi-structured questionnaire; interviews were transcribed and coded for analysis. The analysis revealed that the dialectic tensions of control vs. emancipation, empowerment vs. oppression are prevalent in teachers' relationships with administrators; the dialectic tensions of solidarity vs. autonomy and fragmentation vs. unity are common in the relationships of teachers with administrators and colleagues as well; while the dialectic tensions of nurture vs. discipline, respect vs. suspect, consistency vs. flexibility, and connection vs. disconnection are prominent in teachers' relationships with their students.

Subject Area

Educational sociology|Communication|School administration

Recommended Citation

Rodriguez, Griselda Flores, "Exploring dialectic tensions in teachers' relationships in school settings" (2008). ETD Collection for University of Texas, El Paso. AAI1461172.