NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
PDF on ERIC Download full text
ERIC Number: EJ1003966
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 14
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 31
What Does Your Money Get You?: Active Learning as an Alternative to Consumerism in the Composition Classroom
Kurtyka, Faith
Composition Forum, v27 Spr 2013
This article offers a rigorous and researched look at how consumer rhetorics form first-year college students' understandings about life at the university. Examined in the context of consumer culture, students' narratives about university life illustrate how they marshal, appropriate, and deploy consumerist metaphors and to what ends. Using Fredric Jameson's concept of "cognitive mapping," I argue that students rhetorically position themselves as consumer and as marketing strategist because these roles have significant standing in the contemporary capitalist culture, helping students adjust to a new place where they may feel powerless or disoriented. Following my analysis of these narratives, I suggest curricular methods that can be used in the classroom to question the meaning of an education. I advocate offering students the role of "active learner," a role comparable to that of "consumer" but which also offers students a vantage point from which they can shape their university experience. (Contains 2 tables and 5 notes.)
Association of Teachers of Advanced Composition. e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A