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April 17, 2007

YAY! Something I KNOW I Will Use

Keesey, Ch 7 (Introduction) -- Jerz EL312 (Literary Criticism)

"In short, what social forces influence reading practices and what are the social consequences of these practices?" (413).

I am currently doing my secondary teaching practicum at Greenburg Central Catholic this semester and currently the juniors in American lit are reading The Adventures of Huckleberry Fin and like "Benito Cereno" people always have issues with the portrayal of racism and raise the questions like "Should we read the novel because it is racist?" Of course, this is something I and the teacher I am working with are discussing this in depth with the students. Huck Finn is still banned in a lot of schools and other places, but we stress to the students how Twain satirizes the institution of slavery and that he was a realist and a regionalist and so he is authentically portraying the culture and society he was writing about.

This was important for us to address with the students because of this issue Keesey addresses that is so close to the hearts of many "cultural critics" and I believe that as a teacher this is something I will need to consider and it is something that the school board that I work for will consider when it decides what should be part of the curriculum. So, in this way, I think as a teacher I will be asking the same questions that literary critics are asking and using it to apply to my teaching. Literary criticism really reaches further into our lives than I think we initially realized when we began this class. It will influence what and how I teach my students. And for anyone going into publishing, lit crit ideas will also influence the decisions made in that field as well.

Posted by LorinSchumacher at April 17, 2007 12:34 AM


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