NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ856170
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Sep
Pages: 13
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0360-9170
Discipline or Punish? Some Suggestions for School Policy and Teacher Practice
Yang, K. Wayne
Language Arts, v87 n1 p49-61 Sep 2009
This article seeks to restore a counter-narrative of discipline as distinct from punishment. Punishment is retribution for an offense, an exclusionary act by which students are removed from the opportunity to learn. It is harm inflicted by an external agent as a mechanism through which outside regulation becomes internalized subjectivity. Too often, this is the rubric from which we speak of classroom management and school policies on detentions, suspensions, and expulsions. By contrast, discipline is an act of rigorous physical or mental training, a practice of will that can lead paradoxically to docile compliance or emancipatory possibilities. If we think of any challenging endeavor, in athleticism, art, performance, or work, then we know that there is a fine line between authoritarianism and rigorous creativity. This article is concerned with discipline as praxis--its transformative possibility--and by what methodology it may be found, studied, and nurtured in classrooms and schools. (Contains 8 endnotes and 3 figures.)
National Council of Teachers of English. 1111 West Kenyon Road, Urbana, IL 61801-1096. Tel: 877-369-6283; Tel: 217-328-3870; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Education; Elementary Secondary Education; High Schools; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A