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ERIC Number: ED361743
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1993-Mar
Pages: 17
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: N/A
Constructive/Constructing Dialogue: Students, Teachers and the "Self" in the Writing Classroom.
Hodgkins, Deborah
As current scholarship in composition is becoming increasingly influenced by post-structuralist theories of discourse, two approaches to teaching freshman composition compete with one another. At the heart of the controversy lies the question of the place of academic discourse in this pedagogy. The social constructionist approach (supported by David Bartholomae) focuses on academic writing as the real work of the academy, finding that the most "empowered" writers are those who can take authority with their relation to the past by interacting with other texts. The expressivist approach (supported by Peter Elbow) focuses on classrooms where students can clear out a space for themselves and "own" their work, a classroom where students can be free from the institution. The difficulty for the composition teacher is to reconcile what is appealing about both views, as a review of current composition theorists demonstrates. Introducing the terms of the conflict and the politics surrounding the teaching of academic discourse to students in the writing classroom allows students themselves to explore solutions out in the open. Without expecting students to develop an expertise in theory, the issues at stake can be introduced and students can be asked to consider how they imagine their own "selves" and the relation of those selves to language and the community. (NH)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A