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ERIC Number: EJ1099431
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Pages: 6
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0155-2147
The Potential of New Historicism for the Secondary English Classroom
Allingham, Philip
English in Australia, v50 n3 p39-44 2015
Although secondary school teachers have long been aware of the pedagogical possibilities of Louise Rosenblatt's Reader Response (articulated first in "Literature as Exploration," 1938) and I. A. Richards' Close Reading (first broached in "The Meaning of Meaning: A Study of the Influence of Language upon Thought and of the Science of Symbolism," 1923) approaches, Stephen Greenblatt's New Historicism (as outlined in his essay "Resonance and Wonder," 1990), acknowledging our own critical responses are tainted by the predispositions and attitudes of our own age, seems to have remained exclusive to university literary studies. Despite its flexibility (since it can incorporate such additional perspectives as Deconstruction, Feminist, and Psychological), the aim of New Historicism remains to recover the original reception of a text by retrieving the intellectual context of that text, including influences in the writer's life such as political convictions and works read or (as in the case of music, drama and the visual arts) experienced. Since this "Cultural Poetics" approach sees potential for understanding the socio-politico-cultural context of a previous era in all sorts of texts, the approach is especially useful in deconstructing and close reading of mixed media texts such as illustrated novels and children's books.
Australian Association for the Teaching of English. English House, 416 Magill Road, Kensington Gardens, SA 5068 Australia. Tel: +61-8-8332-2845; Fax: +61-8-8333-0394; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A