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ERIC Number: ED161072
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1978-Apr
Pages: 15
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: 0
Correspondence: A Medium Rediscovered.
Dilworth, Collett B., Jr.; Wilde, Pat
Two English teachers, one in North Carolina and one in Missouri, structured a correspondence project for their senior English classes so that 60 students at each school exchanged personal letters once each week during the semester. The students responded to the project with an interest and drive that overshadowed their interest in the normal English class studies. After the teachers examined the students' correspondence, they identified three dimensions of discourse that were applicable to any clause in the letters. These dimensions (subject distance, temporal distance, and level of understanding) offer a three-faceted perspective on correspondence as a medium and yield two conclusions to the study. First, students tend to prefer discourse that concerns a relatively intimate subject distance ("I" and "you" as opposed to "them" and "it"), that treats recent matters, and that establishes the significance of discussed events instead of merely supplying uninterpreted narratives and descriptions. Second, dialogue through the mail seems to be fostered less by wit and observation than by the discernment and reporting of personalized meaning. (Author/RL)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Secondary School English Conference (6th, Dallas, Texas, April 7-8, 1978)