ALL RIGHT, THEN. I’m posting to you from Hogwarts, where I’m getting ready for days of conferencing and also preparing to return jetlagged next week. Cheers!
Our reading for this week may seem a little disunited, as in lacking a central theme, but I think there is one there. I wanted to include a couple more contexts in which to rephrase a question that we’ve discussed every week, I thinks: How can we foster our students’ ability to change the world and the university for the better while we also teach them to succeed in those things, such as they are?
I know that some of you may wrestle with that in your seminar papers, and you could choose to ground the question any one of a wide variety of institutional and pedagogical contexts.
Our readings for this week include a very canonical text (Bartholomae) that has a long history of citation in composition studies and progressive pedagogy. That means that it is, at this point, part of the institutional history of the university as well as a call to reinvent the university. What can we learn from it now– about what the university is; what it should be; and how we might reform it in our time?
The other two articles– by Sarah Ahmed and Laura Portwood-Stacer– think about what the university does and what it needs in very different contexts. They might both help us think about rhetoric as a repository of hierarchical power and all kinds of capital, cultural and otherwise. How might we use them to think critically about the university– how we inhabit it and reproduce its institutional cultures or not? How might you use them to think about the work you’re doing in ENG 110?
I want to look at lesson plans with you next week, so I hope you will post yours here. I’ll copy them and bring them to class so we can workshop them. As you do, think also about:
- the process you use for writing lesson plans;
- the process you use for revising them after you use them;
- the criteria by which you evaluate them as you go.
The more I think about it, the more I think we have to say about all of this.