Eccentric Propositions Essays on Literature and the Curriculum
Originally published in 1984. This book charts important changes brought about by teachers in the way literature is read and written about in schools. Rooted in experiences of inner-city schools, it is extremely practical and especially valuable for the multi-ethnic classroom. The writers, all of whom are experienced teachers of English, believe, however, that all schools need to respond to the cultural, racial and linguistic diversity of British society, whether their own populations are homogeneous or mixed. By concentrating on real classrooms, real lessons and real children, the book shows how particular ideas can be put into practice. It approaches theories of reading and of literature through specific examples of lively and successful practice and argues the ease for the centrality of literature and literacy to the curriculum. The book includes lists of resources: books to read with children and books for teachers to read for themselves to deepen their understanding of the ideas and their confidence in adapting them for their own classrooms. Throughout the book continuities are emphasized: between life and literature, between reading and writing, and between learning to read, becoming better at it, and studying literature.
Introduction Jane Miller 1. That’s Not Right. Look! There’s No Daddy in this Book Maura Dockerty 2. Story in its Writeful Place Sue May 3. What Books Tell Girls: A Memoir of Early Reading Marion Glastonbury 4. Diverse Melodies. A First-year Class in a Secondary Cchool Tony Burgess 5. The Language of Literature Richard Exton 6. Reading Literature with a Slow Learner Judith Graham 7. Cook a Poem - a Poetry Tasting Heather Kay 8. Poetry in the First Three Years of Secondary School Paul Ashton and David Marigold 9. Literature in the Fourth and Fifth Years of the Secondary School Maureen Worsdale 10. Comics and Magazines for Schoolchildren Paul Hoggart 11. Comprehension. Bringing it Back Alive Bob Moy and Mike Raleigh 12. Learning Poetry Terry Furlong 13. Dealing with a Set Book in Literature at 16+ David Jackson 14. Media Studies Andrew Bethell 15. For their Own Purposes - Reading African and Caribbean Literature with Young Black People John Lee 16. A Better A-Level Peter Traves 17. Literature and New Courses in Further Education Colleges Mary Collins 18. Using Community-published Writing in the Classroom Gerry Gregory