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In this article, we present initial reflections of the research project Identidade de genero no espaco escolar: possibilidades discursivas para superacao da heteronormatividade, from Gonzalez (2017) doctoral research, developed in the scope of the project "Corpos e identidades como praticas sociodiscursivas: estudos em Analise de Discurso Critica" (CARDOSO; VIEIRA, 2014); GONZALEZ; VIEIRA, 2015; RAMALHO, 2012, 2013; VIEIRA; DIAS, 2016).

Fulfilling our scientific and political commitment to the critical explanation, in situated social practices, of ways of acting and relating (the inter-actions); of the ways of constructing systems of knowledge (representations), and also of ways of being and of identifying (identifications) partially (with) powers-knowledge-subjectivities in gender relations, we discuss here an aspect of the complex social process in which the concepts of "social gender" and "sexuality" are constructed in national political-pedagogical policies, specifically, in the National Curricular Parameters (BRASIL, 1998). Our focus will be mainly on Volume 10, dedicated to presenting the cross-cutting theme of "Sexual Orientation" (BRASIL, 1997, v. 10), because it is a basic policy presenting the theme in Brazilian education.

For this, in section 1, we present central concepts of social gender studies and Critical Discourse Analysis (FAIRCLOUGH, 2003; PARDO APRIL, 2013; VIEIRA; RESENDE, 2016) for the discussion we carry out here. In section 2, we deal with aspects of the dynamics of the social process through which the themes "gender" and "sexuality" became part of the authoritative Brazilian pedagogic discourse, starting from the pedagogical understanding of Bernstein (1996). In section 3, we articulate the debate about discourse, gender and sexuality in the relational mapping of the main forms of lexical selection and of the construction of semantic relations of lexical cooccurrence in the document.

We thus seek to raise some initial reflections on the ongoing relations of force that support the most biological-hygienist and moral-traditionalist discourses in the political-pedagogical policies in force in Brazil that seek to suppress or exclude discourses with more emancipatory and critical potential (FURLANI, 2011), with openness to sociocultural complexity, recognition of difference and education as a practice of freedom (FREIRE, 2005).

Discourse and studies of social gender

For Critical Discourse Analysis (CDA) of the British and Latin American slope, language/discourse constitutes dialectically social practices, that is, in the recurrent ways, temporally and spatially situated, forms of

* representing and projecting the world (i.e., as particular discourses, in relation to the truths that constitute us as subjects of knowledge);

* acting and interacting in the world (i.e., as discursive genres, in the relations of power that constitute us as subjects acting with and on people) and

* identifying ourselves and others (as styles, in the ethical relationships in which we constitute ourselves as subjects of moral action).

The above topics, elaborated from Chouliaraki and Fairclough (1999), Fairclough (2003), Foucault (2011, 1984) and Morey (1995), point to CDA as a transdisciplinary approach to the criticism of the functions of discourse in social practices and the point of view of its ideological effects (that is, of meanings potentially at the service of asymmetric power, according to Thompson, 2002) in knowledge/powers/identifications.

Studies in the field of CDA are committed to the questioning of political and moral issues related to power and justice in social life. Beyond the notion of social justice (a notion more linked to a rational legal system, elaborated by private and restricted groups of people), it also seeks to include moral questions of social life, that is, "the ethical relations in which we constitute ourselves as subjects of moral action, "as mentioned.

Beyond rational right and utility, such values involve the interpersonal relationships and cultural awareness that moral issues require (ROSENDO, 2015). They involve an ethics of the care-sensitive being, associated with the ethics of knowledge and power, and problematizing hegemonic capitalist rationality based on hierarchically organized value dualisms that maintain the logics of colonial-imperialist patriarchal domination: male / female, white/black, culture/nature, human/nonhuman, spirit/body, human/nature, masculine/feminine, homo/hetero, reason/emotion, among others (BANDEIRA; ALMEIDA, 2008; FELIPE, 2014; MINOSO; CORREOZ; MUNOZ, 2014 .

As Quijano (2000: 223) observes, such dualisms have legitimized and sustained in Latin America the coloniality of knowledge, the coloniality of power, and the coloniality of being, including lifestyles in society. The dualism between reason / body, for example (arising from the radical separation between "subject-reason" and "body", arises, according to the author, from the Eurocentric rationality that fixed the body as "object of nature", as "object of knowledge", and, consequently, as "object of domination and exploitation", thus legitimizing the 'scientific' theorizing of the problem of races condemned as 'inferior'." The construction of this radical dualism, reason / body (nature-domination), has served to legitimize not only "race relations", but also "sexual relations" of domination, presenting itself as one of the pillars of the colonial matrix of power, the control of the economy, the control of authority, the control of nature and natural resources, the control of subjectivity and knowledge, the control of gender and sexuality (MIGNOLO, 2010, p.12, quoted in BALLESTRIN, 2013, p. 100).

The corporeity, and the issues attached to it, have thus been legitimated in the hegemonic discourses as strictly biological and natural, which conceals its social constitution as a central marker for distribution in social stratification (DIAS, 2014). All body experiences and their markers (skin, race, sex, a-normality and physical and mental abilities, ethnicity, social class, age/generation) permeate and constitute our organizations as (re-) producers of knowledge, and moral action in social life.

Nowadays, Haraway (2000) reminds us that the performance of such devices is not restricted to clinical space, but extends in wide networks of information, production of knowledge aimed at controlling actions, subjectivities and relations of gender and sexuality--one of the pillars of the colonial/imperialist matrix of power. It is in this sense that we can reflect here on the articulation between the device of sexuality (FOUCAULT, 2011) and the pedagogical device (BERNSTEIN, 1996), with its instructional and regulatory discourse organized around distributive, recontextualising and evaluative rules, as we shall return to.

According to Pereira (2008), the device of sexuality currently works through "sexopolitics", which is the dominant configuration of biopolitical action in contemporary capitalism. Sex (sexual organs, sexual practices and codes of masculinity and femininity) and normative technologies (flows of surgical techniques, hormones, representational flows) of sexual identities are agents of the current political regime of body administration and control and management of life aimed at producing heterosexual, patriarchal, and reproductive "normality". The discursive rules of heteronormativity produce, according to Pereira (2008, p. 505), gender performances (binary, based on sex differences) that are reiterated and quoted, obscuring "[...] multiplicity, plasticity and plurality of expressions that can not to be reduced to male and female [...]" (1), or to the types of agency defined for each in this binary understanding.

On the other hand, the body is not a passive fact of a biopower, and sexopolitics also shows itself as the space of a creation where homosexuals, feminist, transsexual, intersexual, transgender movements succeed and juxtapose themselves. In this unstable equilibrium of creation and change, the assemblages of these bodies destabilize heterosexuality and the power economy itself, and "normative technologies are resignified, giving room for resistance to heteronormative practices and strategies" (PEREIRA, 2008, p. 505) (2). Indeed, a political and moral stance aimed at overcoming relations of domination based on gender and sexuality control includes the debate over the role of discourse in maintaining these asymmetries of power.

The contributions of Linguistics to the debate on the relations between social gender and language, as synthesized by Mills and Mullany (2011), gained strength from the "discursive turn" in the mid-1980s, as a political and social commitment, and not only academic one. Social gender became more analyzed as a process, in contexts and discourses, in order to problematize the beliefs that support forms of prejudice and oppression, and sexuality came to be seen as a central aspect for the analysis of identities. In general terms, the concept of social gender has broadened its focus to encompass issues such as power, race, ethnicity, social class, age/generation, territoriality, "corporalities" (or embodiments) and performances, at the interface between power and discourse (GONZALEZ; VIEIRA, 2015).

"Sex", therefore, is not only a physical, biological, dissociated form of social and cultural representations, but is clothed with hegemonic knowledges, powers and technologies--political, scientific, juridical-legal, educational, biomedical, acting as devices of power. An example could be pointed out in the debate on the legalization of abortion in Brazil. Machado (2010, p. 131 and p.136) shows the normative function of discourses such as scientific, religious, and juridical in the maintenance of oppressive practices that subject women to a type of "law of sexual intercourse" according to which "would be produced at the same time and in the same act of sexual intercourse that creates the biological child." From then on, it would no longer be entitled to the decision on its own body, that is, the right to "undo what man has done". Thus a justification presented as biological has the potential to legitimize supposedly natural/essential power differences between women and men, and, moreover, men's power over women's bodies, legitimizing rape, domestic violence, "feminicide", the limitations of the right to come and go and to be/act freely in society, etc. (CARDOSO AND VIEIRA, 2014; MAGALHAES, 2009, 2010).

Studying gender is a way of understanding social relations from concepts and representations in social practices developed among people. Whether the relationships between people, whether they are of the same sex or of different sexes, of age, social class, color and the same or different races, are one of the central concerns of the research in which the concept of gender and understanding or value judgment that people have over others from the sexual anatomy and social conformation. The attempt to annul individual differences, the imposition of a standard and representations on social agents are also study concerns.

According to Louro (1992, p.21), the concept of gender "serves, therefore, as an analytical tool that is, at the same time, political". Directing the focus to the fundamentally social character does not imply disregarding biology, but emphasizing the social and historical construction of the genre produced on biological characteristics. It should be remembered that gender relations and their expressions are located in the continuum between masculine and feminine, often erased discursively in representations and styles.

As Grossi (1998, points out) every individual has a nucleus of gender identity, which is a set of beliefs by which one considers socially what is male or female. Sexuality, as a field of practices and feelings linked to the sexual activity of individuals, is "[...] only one of the variables that configures gender identity in concomitance with other things, such as gender roles and the social meaning of reproduction." (GROSSI, 1998, p.12). According to the author, gender identity is a pertinent category to think about the place of the individual within a given culture.

Moore (2015) states that gender identity is constructed and lived by individuals, who can assume multiple positions of subject within a range of social discourses and practices, taking into account mainly the subjective experience of identity, the physical fact of being a subject in a body and the historical continuity of the subject, in which past positions tend to overdetermine present positions of subject.

Gender issues, therefore, being social and culturally situated and negotiated, mobilize networks of power, practices, agencies, norms and knowledge in hegemonic, partially discursive struggles. The coloniality of knowledge, power and being is partially sustained by the ideological discourses produced and legitimized by the devices, organized in networks of discourse orders, with their normative and regulatory function mobilizing mechanisms of organization and control of the social through the production of knowledge, strategies and practices (FOUCAULT, 2011; FAIRCLOUGH, 2003). Theorizing about the pedagogical device, as mentioned above, can help us to reflect on how this happens in relation to the pedagogical discourse.

Gender and sexuality in pedagogical discourse

According to Chouliaraki and Fairclough (1999, p. 151), the dynamism of the discourse order, capable of generating new articulations of discourses, genres and styles, is that it maintains language as an open system, but is also "the fixity of the order of the discourse that limits the generative power of language, preventing certain connections." Thus, new articulations of genres, discourses and styles of different orders of discourse also contribute to the construction of socio-culturally situated and negotiated meanings.

Therefore, it is understood that control over things in social life (knowledge about gender relations and sexuality) operates in relationships with other people (in the regulatory powers of educational and curriculum guidelines) as well as in people's relationships with themselves (in ethical and identity relations as moral subjects acting in the world). Such a social process makes certain connections possible, such as biological-hygienist, moral-traditionalist, religious-radical, therapeutic, and pedagogical discourses, and prevents others, such as the connections between human rights discourses, sexual rights, emancipatory and queer, questioning of the processes of normalization of sexuality, and the pedagogical discourse, in terms of the sex education approaches proposed by Furlani (2011).

Theorizing about the pedagogical device, mentioned above, can help us to reflect on how this is done in relation to the pedagogical discourse, which is organized around distributive, recontextualizing and evaluative rules. Bernstein (1996, p.195) proposes that pedagogical discourse is organized according to three main rules: distributive, recontextualizing and evaluative. In a very simplified way, by the

* distributive rules, pedagogical discourse exercises symbolic control and social distribution "of what is thinkable", or "unthinkable", and "of who can think about", thus defining and distributing the knowledge that can/should circulate in school;

* recontextualizing rules, the pedagogic discourse articulates two main discourses: the instructional discourse, that is, the pedagogies of the transmission and acquisition of knowledge, in the explicit curricula; and the regulatory discourse, of the pedagogies of the construction of social relations and order, in the implicit curriculum, and

* evaluative rules, the transformation of pedagogical discourse into pedagogical practice, defining the forms and conditions of transmission and acquisition of knowledge based on times (ages), spaces (contexts) and texts (contents) that are concretized in the school.

What stands out in the pedagogical discourse, for Chouliaraki and Fairclough (1999), is its recontextualizing property, which shifts discourses from other practices and original contexts and reallocates them in its own practice, according to its principle of distribution, focusing, transmission, control and selective rearrangements, subject to particular world views and to the specialized or political interests of recontextualizing agents (MAINARDES, STREME, 2010). There are many discourses, institutions, apparatuses, laws, regulations, decisions, administrative measures, scientific concepts, statements, philosophical and moral propositions that are articulated around the questions of sexuality and education as strategies of force relations supporting types of knowledge and being supported by them, according to Foucault (2011).

In terms of the problematics discussed here, control over knowledge about sexuality and gender relations of pedagogical discourse with its recontextualizing principle (discourses) is mediated by the actions and power relations between teachers, students, progressive government, conservative political tendencies, social movements, etc., materialized in explicit and implicit legal policies and curricula with powers to regulate practices (discursive genres), just as these actions and relations between people presuppose ethical relations with oneself in practices and experiences identity and intersubjective, as a moral being that acts in the world with its body (styles).

In order to resume our recent history in a very succinct and simplified way, the National Curricular Parameters (PCNs) were prepared by the Ministry of Education in Brazil, with the participation of educational agents and civil society, from 1995 onwards "to draw a new profile for the curriculum, supported by basic skills for the insertion of young people in adult life "[...] and to guide teachers' agents about" the meaning of contextualized school knowledge and interdisciplinary, encouraging reasoning and the ability to learn." (BRASIL, 2011), covering all basic education.

Published since 1997 as a collection of paper policies that present parameters and orientations in relation to daily school life and the main knowledge that must be worked in the different school stages, they offer subsidies for educators and for the institutions to elaborate their own educational project, which, according to the guidelines of PCNs, must always be under construction in a continuous process of revision and improvement.

The PCNs define a set of knowledge recognized as necessary for the exercise of citizenship, with orientations for the areas of knowledge that form the national base, as well as a set of six cross-cutting themes with a proposed methodology for their inclusion in the curriculum and their didactic treatment, in view of the "commitment to the construction of citizenship", which "[...] necessarily demands an educational practice aimed at understanding the social reality and the rights and responsibilities in relation to personal and collective life and affirmation of the principle of political participation." (BRASIL, 1998, p.17). These are: Ethics, Environment, Cultural Plurality, Health, Work and Consumption, Sexual Orientation, this last one contemplating a social perspective of the diversity, integrity and dignity of the human being, body knowledge, feelings and affection, among others.

In the political regime of democracy as guaranteed by the Constitution of the Federative Republic of Brazil (BRASIL, 1988), citizenship encompasses "[...] civil rights (freedom to come and go, of thought and expression, right to physical integrity, freedom of association) (electing and be elected), and their exercise is expressed in the act of voting." (BRASIL, 1998, p.20). These are social themes that should be included in the curriculum in a "transversal" way, in order to be considered within the various areas of knowledge. The proposal is that interdisciplinarity and transversality outweigh the disciplinary fragmentation in school and practices that, in a reprehensible way, had removed the school from the political and social discussions.

As presented by PCNs, such topics were defined based on social urgency, national scope, possibility of teaching-learning in primary education and the need to promote understanding of reality and social participation (BRASIL, 1998). They were incorporated in view that the "[...] commitment to the construction of citizenship necessarily demands an educational practice aimed at understanding the social reality and the rights and responsibilities in relation to personal and collective life and affirmation of the principle of political participation." (BRASIL, 1998, p.17). All this considering the foundations of the Democratic State of Law and the principles that should guide school education, to rescue:

[...] dignity of the human person (respect for human rights, repudiation of discrimination of any kind, access to decent living conditions, mutual respect in interpersonal, public and private relations); equality of rights (guarantee to all people the same dignity and possibility of exercising citizenship, considering the principle of equity, that is, that there are ethnic, cultural, regional, gender, age, religious, etc.) differences and inequalities (socio-economic) that need to be taken into account in order for equality to be effectively achieved; participation (the notion of active citizenship, that is, the complementarity between traditional political representation and popular participation in public space [...] and co-responsibility for social life (responsibility for the destinies of collective life including public authorities and different social groups, organized or otherwise). (BRASIL, 1998, p. 21).

These fundamentals are more objective to be fulfilled than something that, in fact, is part of our reality, especially the current social reality lived in Brazil from the political-legal-media coup d'etat of 2016, by which a set of institutions and actors who support global financial capitalism has taken over the power of the President of the Republic in the fourth term of the progressive political party that governed Brazil since 2003. Therefore, we make a brief explanation here on specific aspects of a moment of crisis, marked by complex social processes in progress, within the framework of a rupture of the social and educational advances in course in the Country.

As discussed by Gomes (2016), the National Education Plan (PNE 2014-2024) was, until June 2016, the articulator of the National Education System, with the purpose of serving as a basis for the elaboration of state, district and municipal education plans. PNE's goals (2014-2024) were widely debated by several entities, discussed at CONAE 2010 and improved in the National Congress, especially in 2011, when public schools in Brazil received the Pedagogical Book of the "Project without Homophobia". Funded by the Ministry of Education and implemented by civil society organizations with the technical guidance of the Secretariat for Continuing Education, Literacy, Diversity and Inclusion (Secadi) of the Ministry of Education, it aimed to "[...] contribute to the recognition of the diversity of moral, social and cultural values present in Brazilian society, heterogeneous and committed to human rights and the formation of a citizenship that in fact includes the rights of LGBT people."

In 2014, the initiative was vetoed in National Congress because of the pressure of conservative political currents who believed the material to be "promiscuous and encouraging homosexuality," which would later serve as a justification for the veto of PNE's Goal 21, which included questions about race, sex, gender, and indigenous people. In 2014, the President determined that each municipality would legislate on the themes, from which a series of conservative discourses emerge, especially in 2015 and 2016, as part of the recrudescence of the extreme right in Brazil, led by global speculative capital.

According to Zinet (2015), in the wake of the debates on gender and sexuality, present in the elaboration of the Municipal Education Plans, in 2015, at least five law projects were passed in Congress that had as their objective to interfere directly with the content addressed in the avoiding 'political and ideological indoctrination'. Some of the projects also proposed "curbing the teaching in schools of what they call" gender ideology "and other forms of' threats to the family "in the wake of the" School without a Party "movement, vetoed by the Public Ministry, aimed at combating what they consider a "process of ideological indoctrination within primary schools."

As pointed out by Thais Moya, representative of the Non-governmental Organization LGBT Visibility, the exclusion of mention of gender and sexuality in the policies (PNE and PME--Municipal Education Plan) could have several consequences:

Without discussing gender in schools, there is no prevention of chauvinism and its violence. Without discussing gender and sexuality, sexual harassment, rape, unwanted pregnancy, and HIV infection are not prevented, just to name a few. Every 27 hours an LGBT person is brutally murdered in our country [...]. Without discussing homophobia and transphobia in schools, we do not combat the bullying that thousands of children and adolescents suffer daily in the school environment because they do not have a gender expression within the heteronormative pattern. Without discussions about this type of gender violence, for example, we do not fight the school drop-outs of these people, who daily have their humanity ridiculed and end up giving up school, when, unfortunately, they sometimes even give up on their lives [...] (Thais Moya, apud PIOVEZAN, 2015, not page).

It is at this juncture that it was possible to maintain "Sexual Orientation" as a crosscutting theme, whose merits point to the efforts to insert the debate on sexuality and gender in school, for the first time in Brazil's history, and whose necessary developments reinforce the urgency of resuming discussion, on a critical, social, discursive, political and moral point of view, consistent with the principles of critical pedagogy which considers the performative impact of the explicit and implicit curriculum on knowledge, power and identities (SILVA, 1999).

Reflections on discourse, gender and sexuality in the National Curricular Parameters

As formulated within the CDA, the Textually Oriented Discourse Analysis (TODA) considers that the elements of discourse orders (discourses, genres, styles) are not purely linguistic, but categories that cross the divide between linguistic and non-linguistic, between the discursive and the non-essentially discursive (FAIRCLOUGH, 2003). The study of these categories in TODA simultaneously contemplates external relations (discourses, genres, styles of a particular discourse order in relation to the networks of discourse orders) in structural discourse analyses, and internal relations (semantic, grammatical, lexical traits used in texts and its relation with social practice), in interactional analyses, at the interface between the social and the discursive.

Based on the metafunctions of the language of Systemic-Functional Linguistics (HALLIDAY; MATTHIESSEN, 2004), it is understood that the main ways in which discourse constitutes and is constituted in social practices are, therefore, linked to the main meanings of discourse: representational meaning/knowledge), inter-ational (interaction /power) meaning and identification (identification /ethics) meaning. Although the approach is relational, traces of semantic, grammatical, and lexical relationships are in principle associated with either genres, or discourses, or particular styles, as we seek to illustrate:
Chart 1--Relational approach for analysis of texts such
as social events

Relational approach to analysis of texts such as social events

Ontological     Participation      Moments of         Main
axes of        of discourse in     orders of        meanings
Foucault       social practices    discourse      of discourse

Axis of         Ways of acting       Genres        Ational/
power          and interacting                     relational

Axis of            Modes of        Discourses   Representational
knowledge      representing and                     meaning
              projecting aspects
                 of the world

Axis of         Ways of being        Styles         Identity
being          and identifying                      Meaning

Relational approach to analysis of texts such as social events

Ontological   Main meanings and textual forms
axes of       / linguistic-discursive categories

Axis of       Intertextuality (irony,
power         presupposition), generic structure,
              gender chains, intergenericity,
              interaction control, semantic /
              grammatical relations, coherence,
              speech functions, types of
              exchange, grammatical mode,
              information value in images, etc.

Axis of       Interdiscursivity, lexical
knowledge     selection, word meaning,
              representation of social actors and
              events through transitivity
              (selection of processes,
              participants, circumstances),
              visual structure (narrative,
              conceptual), etc.

Axis of       The system of evaluation (attitude,
being         engagement and gradation),
              metaphors, value presumptions,
              modality (epistemic, deontic /
              categorical, modalized), visual
              contact in images, body language,
              pronunciation and other
              phonological traits, vocabulary,

Source: Author's elaboration.

Always remembering that the approach is relational, that is, that everything above is in a dialectical/transformational relation, certain meanings and textual forms can tell us more about a specific aspect in the relation between the discursive and not essentially discursive in social practice. As detailed in Vieira and Resende (2016), discursive genres are, in principle, realized in the meanings and actional forms of texts: intertextuality, generic structure, gender chains, intergenericity, interaction control, semantic/grammatical relations, coherence, speech functions, types of exchange, grammatical mode, value of information in images, etc.

Particular discourses are, in principle, realized in the representational meanings and forms of texts: interdiscursivity, lexical selection, word meaning, representation of social actors and actresses through transitivity (selection of processes, participants, and circumstances), visual structure (narrative, conceptual).

Styles/identities are, in principle, realized in the identificational meanings and forms of texts: evaluation system (attitude, engagement and gradation), metaphors, valuation presumptions, visual contact in images, body language, pronunciation and other phonological traits, vocabulary, etc. This does not prevent the linguistic-discursive category of intertextuality, for example, from shedding light on identificational issues, since the selections and articulations of voices may show particular, subjective, proximity or distancing positions of other voices and social positions, as a form of being and acting in the world.

As our interest here is more in the representational aspects of the construction of the concepts of sexuality and gender in an official document in force in Brazil (although consequently we are also occupied with the powers and identities constituted by these knowledge), we seek to analyze in the National Curricular Parameters, volume 10 on "Sexual Orientation", and how these concepts are constructed.

As Resende and Ramalho (2009) synthesize, the same text may articulate different discourses, in relations of cooperation, negotiation, silencing and competition, which can be seen as a process of interdiscursivity. The relationships established between different discourses can be of different types, such as the relations established between people (discourses can complement each other or compete with each other in relations of domination), since discourses are part of the resource used by social actors or group in order to form relationships, cooperating, competing, negotiating, dominating.

It is important to recall, with Fairclough (2003, p. 130), that "[...] when different discourses come into conflict and particular discourses are contested, what is centrally challenged is the power of these pre-constructed semantic systems to generate particular visions of the world and their effect." In the case of the pedagogical device, what is at stake here is the symbolic control and social distribution of what is defined and legitimized as knowledge about "sexuality", articulating the instructional discourse and the regulator in pedagogical practice (RAMALHO, 2012). Universalization and discursive access to private representations are important instruments of hegemonic struggles, since one way of temporarily securing hegemony is to disseminate a particular world perspective (a knowledge) as if it were the only possible, consensual, legitimate and acceptable (VIEIRA; RESEENDE, 2016).

Having these social and discursive theoretical-methodological contributions in view, we turn to an analytical approach of PCN's, with a focus on Volume 10, dedicated to the cross-sectional orientation of sexual orientation (BRASIL, 1997) a fundamental part in the presentation of the theme in Brazil.

Representation of social actors

According to Vianna and Unbehaun (2004), since the enactment of the Federal Constitution of 1988, various efforts have been made to suggest through legal instruments reforms and changes in basic education. Among these reforms is the promulgation of the text of the 1996 Brazilian Guidelines and Bases of Education Law and the text of the National Curricular Parameters, which will be discussed. The two previous texts, the Federal Constitution and the Law of Guidelines and Bases, do not mention issues related to gender and sexuality. It is precisely the PCN's that mark the introduction of the theme, through the inclusion of notebooks with cross-cutting themes, among them, Sexual Orientation (BRASIL, 1997).

Still according to Vianna and Unbehaun (2004), PCN's are the first legal text in the order of normative texts that regulate education in Brazil to unveil the gender issue. However, the issue is unveiled, still in a subtle and timid way, but not in depth, restricted to a binary and sometimes essentialist vision. It is innovative to include as central axis of school education the exercise of citizenship and themes that aim to rescue the dignity of the human person, equal rights, active participation in society and co-responsibility for social life.

Throughout the "Introduction to National Curriculum Parameters" (BRASIL, 1997, v. 1), there are mentions on gender issues such as the comparison of the average time of studies of boys and girls and the misuse of the term "gender" instead of the term "sex", as exemplified by:

Example 1
Table 1--Average number of years of study; Brazil 1960 to 1990

                1960   1970   1980   1990


Woman           1,9    2,2    3,5    4,9
Man             2,4    2,6    3,9    5,1


Black           0,9           2,1    3,3
Brown           1,1           2,4    3,6
White           2,7           4,5    5,9
Yellow          2,9           6,4    8,6


Northeast       1,1    1,3    2,2    3,3
North/Midwest   2,7    0,9     4
South           2,4    2,7    3,9    5,1
Southeast       2,7    3,2    4,4    5,7

Source: Relatorio sobre o Desenvolvimento Humano no Brasil, 1996;
PNUD/IPEA, Brasilia, 1996 (BRASIL, 1997, v.1, p.21, our translation).

Example 2

The media, in its multiple manifestations, and with great force, assume a relevant role, helping to shape visions and behaviors. It carries erotic images, which stimulate children and adolescents, increasing anxiety and feeding sexual fantasies. It also informs, carries out educational campaigns, which are not always directed and adequate to this public. It also often moralizes and reinforces prejudices. When it is elaborated by children and adolescents, this mix of messages can end up producing concepts and explanations both erroneous and fanciful. (BRASIL, 1997, v. 10, p. 292).

There is a conflict here with the previous representation of the term sexuality, which was presented as something that "emerges" in all ages, natural, because if it is natural, why should there be a vocabulary authorized to speak on the subject? There is an assumption that there would be two sexualities: that of the child, which should not be "eroticized and fanciful," and that of the adult, which could be. The media is represented as an antagonistic actor against whom the school would have to fight, to "correct" (as "erroneous") concepts, explanations and "deviant" behaviors in relation to sexuality. There is an assignment of guilt and responsibility to other social institutions, in this case the media, and a consequent lack of responsibility for the school.

Sexuality, when recontextualized in the school context, is represented /reified in the text as "sexual orientation". At the moment, several hygienizing and biologizing discourses are used to legitimize the need to include the theme in the school curriculum. Sexuality, it is claimed, would be linked to "life, health, pleasure and well-being" and work with "Sexual Orientation" is articulated with "health promotion":

Example 3

If the school wishes to have an integrated view of the experiences lived by the students, seeking to develop the pleasure for the knowledge, it is necessary to recognize that it plays an important role in the education for a sexuality linked to life, health, pleasure and well-being and that encompasses the various dimensions of the human being. The systematic work of Sexual Orientation within the school is also articulated with the promotion of the health of children, adolescents and young people. The existence of this work makes it possible to carry out preventive actions against sexually transmitted diseases/AIDS more effectively. Several studies have already shown the poor results obtained by sporadic studies on this subject. Numerous research also point out that only information is not sufficient to favor the adoption of preventive behaviors. (BRASIL, 1997, v. 10, p.293).

As we go deeper, discourses on sexuality are hybridized with those of health promotion to create a new discourse, the need for education on the theme of "Sexual Orientation" on the agenda. There is a presentation of the legitimating discourse of scientific authority with the use of generalization in "several studies" and the repeated use of the term prevention and derivatives (preventive behaviors and preventive behaviors), that is, associating sexuality with disease prevention and "unwanted behavior", again, destabilizing the concept of sexuality as something natural, but suspending the debate about the implications of gender relations in social life, such as sexual and behavioral patterns that contradict heteronormativity.

In the topic of Sexual Orientation, the gender theme is highlighted. The objectives are to "combat authoritarian relations, to question the rigidity of the standards of conduct established for men and women and to point to their transformation," encouraging in school relations the "diversity of behavior of men and women," "relativity conceptions traditionally associated with the masculine and the feminine", "respect for the other sex", and the "various expressions of the feminine and the masculine" (BRASIL, 1997, v.10, p.144 and p.146). There are in these detailed references the commitment to a training oriented to the promotion of interpersonal relationships endowed with non-discriminatory meanings, privileging the articulation of the content of the block concerning the genre "with the areas of History, Physical Education and the situations of school conviviality" (BRASIL, 1997, v.10, p.145).

However, as a result of the social dynamics, its possibilities and constraints, the discursive strategy adopted by the document is to binarize the concept of gender, privileging masculine and feminine identities only, as general, homogeneous and accepted identities as standard identities in the educational process. In other words, work with gender and sexuality would be restricted to the scope of heterosexist and heteronormative relations, thus excluding the diversity of identities that emerge in social relations, which a future official text that guides the parameters of education in our country could do differently.

Lexical selection and semantic relations of co-occurrences of words

The word "sexuality", as mentioned in the previous subsection, is quite recurrent throughout the document. We will start from the categories proposed by Pardo Abril (2013) and Fairclough (2003), from lexical selection and semantic relations of cooccurrence to explain the constructed meanings for the word in the construction of the instructional and regulating discourse of PCN's.

Briefly, according to Fairclough (2003, p. 213), semantic co-occurrences (collocations, in the original) are more or less habitual patterns of co-occurrence between words. The author points to the term "poor old", which is a frequent combination of two words that take on meaning and is more frequent than "poor young", for example. Studies of these standards, he says, are well-established in corpus research, especially those working with a large body of text, as in our case, despite the clipping of the data needed here. They help, as Pardo Abril points out, "to explain context models, since predecessor and successor expressions convey sociocultural knowledge, beliefs, opinions and emotions about what is represented, and, to that extent, allow to recognize relations between discourse and social conditioning "that determines the theme in focus. Consider the analysis of the occurrence of the word "sexuality" and the co-texts associated with it in the PCN's:
Table 1--Occurrences of the word "sexuality", in Notebook 10 of
PCN's--Sexual Orientation, quantified in NVivo

Word            Extension   Counting   Percentage (%)   Similar words

Sexuality          11         100           1,09          Sexualidad
sexual              6          79           0,86            Sexual
students            6          70           0,76           Student
school              6          62           0,67           Schools
body                5          59           0,64            bodies
orientation        10          58           0,63           Oriented
kids                8          57           0,62             kid
work                8          49           0,53            Works
questions           8          41           0,45           Question
teacher             9          39           0,49           Teachers
content             9          36           0,39           contents
diferent           10          36           0,39          diferents
aids                4          32           0,35             AIDS
respect             8          30           0,33           Respect
information        11          28           0,30         Information
relation            7          28           0,30           Relation
information        11          28           0,30         Informations
relation            7          28           0,30           Relation
sex                 4          26           0,28             Sex
behaviours         14          23           0,25          Behaviour
education           8          23           0,25          Education
space               6          22           0,24            Space
manifestation      13          22           0,24        Manifestation
deseases            7          20           0,24           Desease
human               6          20           0,22            Humans
relations           8          20           0,22           Relation
women               8          19           0,21            Woman
educator            8          18           0,20          Educators
gender              6          18           0,20           Genders
life                4          18           0,20             Life
knowledge          12          17           0,18          Knowledges

Source: Author's elaboration.

In Table 1, we see the high recurrence of the word "sexuality" in the document. A scanning was made throughout the document and, among the 30 most frequent words, the one with the highest percentage was "sexuality". In analyzing the other terms, we noticed that orientation, AIDS and diseases also had a high frequency, which reinforces our previous discussion about the association of the discourse related to sexuality with a bio-medical discourse and association of the term with aspects of biological care of the body.

Once identified as the word with the highest occurrence in the document, it is relevant to observe which are the predecessor and successor co-texts that surround this high-frequency lexical unit, since these co-texts contribute to configure the meanings that the lexical units assume throughout the document. The following is a table with all the co-texts associated with the word "sexuality" in the section of the corpus we are illustrating:
Chart 2--Co-occurrences of the lexical unit "sexuality" in the
Justification for the cross-sectional theme Sexual orientation.

When dealing with the   sexuality    is considered as something
topic Sexual                         inherent to life and health,
Orientation, search-                 which expresses itself early in
                                     the human being.

The treatment of        sexuality    in the initial series aims to
                                     allow the student to find in the
                                     school an information and
                                     training space, with regard to
                                     issues relating to their moment
                                     of development and the issues
                                     that the environment poses.

The discussion on the   sexuality    in the curriculum of primary and
inclusion of the                     secondary schools has intensified
                                     since the 1970s, because it is
                                     considered important in the
                                     overall formation of the

From the mid-1980s      sexuality    in schools has increased due to
onwards, the demand                  educators' concern about the
for jobs in the                      large increase in unwanted
                                     pregnancies among adolescents and
                                     the risk of HIV infection among
                                     young people.

The manifestations of   sexuality    blooms in all age groups.
                                     Ignoring, hiding or repressing
                                     are the most common responses
                                     given by school professionals.

Parents' behavior       sexuality    that the child perceives
among themselves,
their relationship
with their children,
the type of "care"
recommended, the
expressions, gestures
and prohibitions they
establish are loaded
with certain values
associated with the

It can be said that     sexuality    in childhood.
it is in private
space, therefore,
that the child
receives with greater
intensity the notions
from which it will
construct its

There are               sexuality,   to adult audience.
sci-entific programs
on AIDS prevention
that focus on

Children also watch     sexuality.
them, but they cannot
fully understand the
meaning of these
messages and often
construct erroneous
and fanciful concepts
and explanations

It is not only in       sexuality    is inscribed in the school space;
doors of bathrooms                   it "invades" the school through
and walls that the                   the attitudes of the students in
                                     the classroom and the social
                                     coexistence between them.

Sometimes the school    sexuality    outside of it.
makes the unanswered
request that students
leave their

There is also the       sexuality    of adults in school. For example,
clear presence of                    one can note the great uneasiness
                                     and curiosity that the pregnancy
                                     of a teacher arouses in the

It is known that the    sexuality    are very significant issues for
curiosities of                       subjectivity insofar as they
children about                       relate to the knowledge of the
                                     origins of each one and the
                                     desire to know.

If the school should    sexuality    linked to life, health, pleasure
have an integrated                   and well-being, which integrates
view of the                          the various dimensions of the
experiences lived by                 human being involved in this
the students, seeking                aspect.
to develop the
pleasure for the
knowledge, it is
necessary that it
recognize that it
plays an important
role in the education

The correct             sexuality    raise awareness about the care
information allied to                needed to prevent these problems.
the work of
self-knowledge and
reflection on one's

Source: Author's elaboration.

The creation of a conceptual network (PARDO APRIL, 2013) organized as a sociohistorical narrative about what constitutes "sexuality" in the pedagogical governance discourse of PCN's is limited to the biological-hygienist, moral-traditionalist and therapeutic discourses, which, desirably, does not include radical-religious discourse but which does not yet take as effective and legitimate the opening to the discourse of human rights, sexual rights and the emancipatory and queer approach.

The terms predecessors reveal what are the main actions that are developed around sexuality: "treat", "include" and "discuss". All, even, appear in the text in the form of nominalizations: "treatment", "discussion" and "inclusion", revealing the low commitment to a truth value in action in the construction of this discourse. The terms "build" and "construct" are also used in addition to "demand". From this basic semantic construction (PARDO APRIL, 2013), we can see that foundational schemas are expressed as an equation in which the represented object is defined by a set of categories, concepts and relations. This implies that sexuality, according to the document, must be treated, discussed and included by an invisible actor and, because it is under construction, is not something materializable, that is, there is a strategy of fragmentation of this object that demands something without us knowing for whom this demand is oriented.

The successor elements confirm the analysis that sexuality would be related to natural and biological phenomena, since it is represented as something that "arises" and is "apprehended" in a natural way. The word "sexuality" is often replaced by "sexual orientation". The word "sexual" is the second most recurrent word in the document. In some passages of the document, the term "sexual" is not used in co-occurrence with the term "guidance", such as "contact", "abuse", "education", "relationship", "pleasure" violence ", which, in some cases, relate sexuality to negative attributes, undesirable in the social or school context. In the following, as illustrated by the concept of "sexuality", we present a table with the co-texts of the term "Sexual Orientation":
Chart 3--Co-occurrences of the term "Sexual orientation" in the
Justification for the cross-sectional theme Sexual orientation.

In dealing with the       sexual orientation   it is sought to
theme                                          consider sexuality as
                                               something inherent to
                                               life and health, which
                                               expresses itself early
                                               in the human being

The first part of this    sexual orientation   as a transversal theme
paper justifies the                            in the curricula, that
importance of including                        is, it discusses the
                                               role and the posture of
                                               the educator and the
                                               school, describing, for
                                               that, the necessary
                                               references to the best
                                               educational action when
                                               dealing with the
                                               subject, work that
                                               differs from the
                                               treatment of the issue
                                               in the family

At first, it was          sexual orientation   in schools, because
believed that families                         they recognize not only
were resistant to                              their importance for
addressing such issues                         children and young
in school, but it is                           people, but also the
now known that parents                         difficulty of talking
claim                                          openly about it at

A survey conducted by     sexual orientation   in school curricula.
the DataFolha
Institute, conducted in
ten Brazilian capitals
and published in June
1993, found that 86% of
those interviewed were
in favor of including

The Systematic Work of    sexual orientation   within the school is
                                               therefore linked to the
                                               promotion of the health
                                               of children and

The work of               sexual orientation   also contributes to the
                                               prevention of serious
                                               problems such as sexual
                                               abuse and unwanted
                                               pregnancy. Correct
                                               information combined
                                               with the work of
                                               self-knowledge and
                                               reflection on one's own
                                               sexuality broadens the
                                               awareness of the care
                                               needed to prevent these

Source: Author's elaboration.

Here, the predecessors terms reveal what are the main processes that are developed around Sexual Orientation: again "treat", "include" and "re-claim". The word "work", however, is new, and reveals a conceptual network created around "Sexual Orientation" with a more formal character, a work to be developed in a well-defined place: the school. The word "school" is a locative predecessor used repeatedly, in addition to "curriculum", "school curriculum". Unlike "sexuality" carried out in several places and by different actors, "Sexual Orientation" belongs to the school and curricular field, being a subject claimed as a curricular theme to be "worked" in the curricula and in the classroom.

Thus, the document establishes a legitimacy of sexuality, which is then recontextualized in the pedagogical discourse as "sexual orientation", thus representing a particular discourse on how sexuality should be transformed into pedagogical practice in the context of the school, with a more restricted inclination to legitimized biological-hygienist and therapeutic knowledge and to the moraltraditionalist approach.


Spite of what still needs to be developed in Brazil as parameters for educational processes that include questions about sexuality and gender relations, in the wake of what we illustrate here, it is also necessary to highlight the advances made possible by the inclusion of this theme in 1997 in the official policies guiding the Brazilian education, as we pointed out in section 2.

Today we live in a moment of hegemonic struggles in which strategies of social and discursive relations of force have sustained the defense of the total suppression of the concept of "gender" in pedagogical-curricular policies. And this is done through the support of a network of hegemonic discourses, around the central religious-radical discourse, which operates a displacement of the meaning of "ideological" (that is, of meanings necessarily favorable to asymmetries of power and processes of domination, according to THOMPSON, 2002) to construct the alleged problem of "gender ideology and other forms of threats to the family," which attempts to curb the achievements in progress on the subject, also made possible by PCN's.

Such a radical-religious position, however, directly undermines the foundations of the Democratic Rule of Law, and the principles that should guide school education committed to citizenship, such as respect for human rights, repudiation of discrimination of any kind, access to conditions of dignified life, mutual respect in interpersonal, public and private relations; guarantee to all people of the same dignity and possibility of exercising citizenship, considering ethnic, cultural, regional, gender, age, religious differences; co-responsibility for social life (BRASIL, 1998, p. 21). On the other hand, in this hegemonic struggle to stabilize what is legitimate school knowledge in the fields of sexuality and gender relations, relevant practices and local assemblages of resistance have emerged.

A local example that we bring here is the case of the Curriculum in Basic Education Movement of the Federal District (SINDICATO DOS PROFESSORES DO DISTRITO FEDERAL, 2014), linked and subordinated to PCN's, but which brings new paradigms and new discourses to light and widens the debate regarding the concepts of gender and sexuality. It brings, in the eight Cadernos that compose the curriculum, with the exception of the notebook focused on Professional and Distance Education, the themes related to gender, sex and sexuality, sometimes in a more marked and evident way, others in a more discreet way, but into the development of the theme in the areas of Human Sciences as essential components of social relations. Still, based on these same assumptions, the Education Department of the Federal District has promoted other initiatives, such as the Cine-Diversity workshops, and some kindergarten schools, for example, are no longer celebrating "Mother's Day" or "Father's Day", but the "Family Day", as we had the opportunity to meet in the field. Local initiatives that, driven by the discussion of the theme, can favor critical and citizen formation in school, in which sexuality and gender issues are treated from the perspective of diversity/ plurality, avoiding gender discrimination, discourse-based violence biologizing and heteronormative, sexism, capacitism, male protagonism in the classroom (GONZALEZ, 2013), among other fundamental problems that require urgent position in social life, as advocated by PCN's.

And, of course, a political and moral stance that seeks to overcome relations of domination sustained in the control of gender and sexuality includes the debate about the function of discourse in the maintenance of these asymmetries of power. Practices and strategies (and the school is the fundamental space for this) of critical linguistic awareness can help unravel and problematize the oppressive and generative social effects of the dissemination and legitimation of the ideological discourses that produce and sustain asymmetric value dualisms.

VIEIRA, V.; GONZALEZ, C. Lexical selection and semantic relations of co-occurrences in "Parametros curriculares nacionais. Alfa, Sao Paulo, v. 63, n.1, p.161-187, 2019.


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Received on 10 September, 2017.

Approved on 29 Abril, 2018.

Vivine Cristina VIEIRA *

Carolina Goncalves GONZALEZ **

* University of Brasilia (UnB), Postgraduate Program in Linguistics, Campus Darcy Ribeiro, Brasilia--DF--Brazil. Department of Linguistics, Portuguese and Classical Languages. ORCID: 0000-0003-4148-5414

** University of Brasilia (UnB), Postgraduate Program in Linguistics, Campus Darcy Ribeiro, Brasilia--DF--Brazil. ORCID: 0000-0002-1603-768X

(1) "[...] multiplicidade, a plasticidade e a pluralidade de expressoes que nao podem se reduzir ao masculino e feminino [...]" (PEREIRA, 2008, p. 505).

(2) "as tecnologias de normatizacao sao ressignificadas abrindo espaco para resistencias a praticas e estrategias heteronor mativas" (PEREIRA, 2008, p. 505).
Table 2--Frequencies in the corpus of PCN's Notebook 10--Sexual

     High Frequency                 Low Frequency

Lexical Unit    Frequency    Lexical Unit    Frequency
Sexuality          100       Women              19
Sexual             79        Educator           18
Students           70        Gender             18
School             62        Life               18
Body               59        Knowledge          17

Source: Author's elaboration.
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Author:Vieira, Vivine Cristina; Gonzalez, Carolina Goncalves
Publication:Alfa: Revista de Linguistica
Date:Jan 1, 2019

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