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ERIC Number: EJ944303
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 23
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 32
ISSN: ISSN-1534-9322
The Genre Effect: Exploring the Unfamiliar
Bastian, Heather
Composition Studies, v38 n1 p29-51 Spr 2010
Much composition pedagogy begins writing instruction within familiar territory. As a result, composition educators often structure curriculum and courses so that students first write in familiar genres, like personal narratives, and examine and critique their own lives, experiences, and even beliefs through those genres before turning to unfamiliar territory. In this essay, the author considers some of the problems students and teachers may encounter when beginning within familiar territory and then provides yet another option for how a composition course might begin writing instruction to foster students' critical consciousness. To do so, she examines how one pedagogical approach, the explicit teaching of genre, incorporates the familiar, mainly through familiar genres, and then she explores the difficulties that students may encounter when beginning within familiar genres. She argues that these difficulties may lie within one's own assumptions about composition pedagogy and critical consciousness as well as the ideological forces of genres and what she is terming as the "genre effect." From this, she expands upon current approaches to the explicit teaching of genre by proposing and exploring a pedagogy that considers the "genre effect" and invites students to begin not with the familiar but with the unfamiliar. (Contains 7 notes.)
University of Winnipeg. Department of Rhetoric, Writing, and Communications 515 Portage Avenue, Winnipeg, Manitoba R3B 2E9, Canada. Tel: 204-786-9001; Fax: 204-774-4134; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A