Sunday, November 27, 2005

limitations of teaching

"Our business must be to instruct students in signifying practices broadly conceived-- to see not only the rhetoric of the college essay, but also the rhetoric of the institution of schooling, of politics, and of the media, the hermeneutic not only of certain
literary texts, but also the hermeneutic of film, TV, and
popular music. [ . . .]Students must come to see that the
languages they are expected to speak, write, and embrace as
ways of thinking and acting are never disinterested, always
bringing with them strictures on the existent, the good, the
possible, and the resulting regimes of power."

from J. Berlin's Rhetoric, Poetics, and Cultures pps 100-101

...true critical thinking practices
the result of which is a group of folks who can (potentially)
consume and deconstruct texts and information thoughtfully and
intelligently. If we read and discuss one magazine article,
one film, one essay and really look at and talk about and
write about the language and the rhetoric, the
purpose/audience/effects (potential) for viewers/readers, the
focus and function of the text, then we will all have
sharpened our critical skills for further use in the future.
Yes, we can teach skills like how to recognize when to fix a
grammatically bad sentence (or better yet how to avoid writing
any bad sentences in the first place), or we can engage with
students and content (whatever that may be) in ways that will
help us all become better thinkers and better writers while
simultaneously participating as intelligent people in our
contemporary culture. Whether we use Foucault or Orwell or the
story on the evening news about someone caught on a security
camera doing's all about, or something about,

No comments: