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ERIC Number: ED553864
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 300
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-3031-2965-0
Graphic Novels as Great Books: A Grounded Theory Study of Faculty Teaching Graphic Novels
Evans-Boniecki, Jeannie
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, Capella University
This Glaserian grounded theory study, through conceptual coding of interviews and course syllabi, aimed at exploring the motivations and aspirations university professors had when they offered courses dedicated to the study of graphic novels. As a result, the emergence of the graphic novel as a vital literary influence in 21st-century academia was validated as an interdisciplinary, multimodal phenomenon. Motivations included enriching students' multimodal experiences, sharing personal interests and passions, and exploring a popular culture phenomenon. The primary aspiration held by participants was that students would gain greater appreciation for an often disparaged medium. Additionally, the study illuminated the evolution of the graphic novel as a microcosm of the creation of the more general academic literary canon. The tabulation of required texts of 100 graphic novel course syllabi resulted in the speculation of a graphic novel canon in spite of the participants typically being skeptical of the "Great Books" concept. What evolved was the concept of a personalized canon subjectively selected for texts' "teachability" as it corresponded with the social/cultural demands of the "teaching moment". Speculation regarding the importance of texts' literacy levels led to an examination of classic canonical texts via the same readability formulas. Evaluation of frequently assigned graphic texts' readability levels revealed that these graphic novels averaged at a fourth grade reading level, four grade levels below select classics, for example, Shakespeare's Hamlet. This phenomenon was regarded as inconsequential by participants because of the sophisticated themes and narrative devices of these graphic novels. Ultimately, an overarching theoretical statement evolved that articulated the essence of this study's findings: Post secondary faculty were "empowering a phenomenon". [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A