Challenges of media and gender literacy classes include the danger of steering students towards “right” interpretations of media texts while simplifying the complex relationship between audiences and media texts. The current paper describes a case study that focused on two high school teachers who were motivated by their protectionist concerns to analyze media representations of gender with students. The study aims to answer the question: Can teachers’ enthusiasm lead to protectionism in media and gender classes, and if so, what does that look like? The author concludes that teachers passionate about shielding students from problematic ideologies may miss out on the complexity of media representations and students’ opinions.

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