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ERIC Number: EJ1162182
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017
Pages: 3
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-1522-7502
Review of Kelly Susan Bradbury's "Reimagining Popular Notions of American Intellectualism: Literacy, Education, Class"
Skinnell, Ryan
Composition Forum, v37 Fall 2017
Bradbury's central goal in this book is to challenge and redefine intellectualism in ways that recuperate and reinvigorate it as a meaningful concept. Bradbury diagnoses a common presumption in the popular American imaginary that equates intellectualism to academic success in elite institutions of higher education. This view of intellectualism, by definition, excludes other educational sites, experiences, and even accomplishments of non-elite students and citizens. For Bradbury, this view of what intellectualism is has important--negative--effects on people's attitudes and actions with regard to learning, intelligence, and education. "Of great importance to rhetoric, composition, and literacy studies scholars," she writes, "these views also mediate the public's--and our students'--attitudes toward literacy; promote a powerful variant of the literacy myth that equates some literacy practices with intellectualism and others with non- or anti-intellectualism; and perpetuate problematic educational hierarchies that categorize some of our students, some of our research and teaching practices, and at times even our discipline as intellectually inferior." In short, Bradbury diagnoses the anti-intellectual enthymeme as a powerful impediment to the kinds of literacy work that rhetoric, composition, and literacy scholars would like to see happen in colleges and universities, but also as an impediment to what counts as valuable literacy work beyond the academy's walls.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
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