ERIC Number: ED373350
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1993-Dec
Reference Count: N/A
The Making of Working-Class Academics: "This Fine Place So Far from Home."
Law, Carolyn Leste; Dews, C. L. Barney
For two working-class academics/editors, the book they co-edited, "This Fine Place So Far from Home: Voices of Academics from the Working Class," is a working-class book masquerading as a traditional scholarly work. Over 100 submissions were received for the collection, and most were autobiographical and did not resemble scholarly essays at all. It was apparent, however, that the contributors did not want to write yet another theoretical, critical, analytical essay. They had to tell their own stories. This disclosure--the "coming out" as working-class academics--is a revolutionary act and also a necessarily autobiographical act. Such a working-class life story is not a threat to an elite university until it is told. The concern over academic versus working-class language made editorial work on the collection particularly difficult. The book, like the language "style," vacillates between two worlds, at times finding itself between two worlds and in a linguistic and social chasm. There are two audiences for the book, and neither will understand it entirely, since it speaks in the language of neither. The contributors had been asked to think about the intersection of class and higher education, but, in most quarters of higher education, the personal is definitely not considered professional. However, the essays, empowering for the writers, can also be empowering for the working-class readers/students presently in the university. (NKA)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Modern Language Association (Toronto, Ontario, Canada, December 27-30, 1993).