ERIC Number: ED215370
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1982-Mar
Reference Count: 0
DREAMS: Reading the Songs of the Self.
Spinks, C. W.
Dreams can be used to draw students into an authentic expression of their creativity and to give them some validation for what they are as persons. A "dream seminar" in a writing course could have students read and discuss Whitman's "Leaves of Grass"; log, report, and discuss their dreams during the course; and explore other forms of expressive writing. The dreams would serve as a personal and cultural touchstone for the imaginative and the authentic. The public sharing of these private experiences reveals the commonality of those experiences while respecting the authenticity of the individual. There are four functions of the dream seminar: (1) it is a self-governed and self-driven class; (2) it taps creativity directly in two supportive ways, psychological and rhetorical; (3) it yokes together the rhetorical polarity of public versus private writing; and (4) it provides student writing with validation and authenticity. Some possible problems with the dream seminar include avoidence behavior among the students, a tendency on the part of the students to consider the course "silly," and the responsiblity of the teacher to balance the self-growth aspects with academic evaluations. Used properly, a dream seminar can produce a continual laboratory for examination of rhetorical responsibility and personal interaction within the context of creativity and writing that engages in the evaluation of literary culture. (HOD)
Publication Type: Guides - Classroom - Teacher; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Whitman (Walt)
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Conference on College Composition and Communication (33rd, San Francisco, CA, March 18-20, 1982).