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ERIC Number: ED412572
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1997-Mar
Pages: 13
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: N/A
A Response to Arguments for Teaching Social Issues in the Freshman Composition Classroom.
Haley, Darryl E.
Teachers of first-year college composition, particularly instructors and graduate teaching assistants with little or no teaching experience, are caught up in a debate concerning the appropriateness of social action as a facet of their personal pedagogical strategies. On the one hand, they are encouraged to promote social activism by individuals who claim that students need such training, that beginning college students have not examined the values of the dominant culture because they have been intellectually stifled by "lock-step" public school practices such as benchmarking and the "family values" curriculum reform proposed by some conservative school boards. On the other hand, they are assured (by some of these same individuals) that it is difficult to go too far in promoting social action, as students are intellectually mature enough to reject an instructor's promotion of a particular political agenda. Discussion of this issue abounds in professional journals and textbooks, such as the "Crossfire" reader, which directly engages students in either/or acts of cultural criticism and validates cultural criticism by implication. Social action as a teaching strategy merits further discussion. But classrooms must be de-centered in such a way as to give students the tools necessary for development and maintenance of critical consciousness, without robbing them of their unique perspectives. And classes must be grounded firmly in the act of writing, the discussion of writing, and the revision of writing. (Contains 19 references.) (Author/NKA)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A