Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Opening act of an academic life 

Reading Mitch yesterday was depressing. Not to find out that there are feminists teaching freshman comp; I'm fine with that, if it's composition that they're teaching. The problem is that it's the most important course a freshman takes (please, not freshperson, and first-year-student is too cumbersome -- thank God they never thought of freshtron!) So what is this 26-year-old grad student thinking as she plans her new course?
And next Monday, a whole new round begins�and this year, I�m doing more socially-conscious assignments than last year. Could be interesting. But I realize now, that if I don�t ask them pointed questions about how they view the world (be it television, themselves, etc), no one else will, either.
And if you worry about how socially conscious your assignment is rather than how well the student can write the assignment, it won't matter how many other classes ask them pointed questions. They won't know how to answer.

My advice to the young Oxsana -- if you want to teach women's studies, teach in their programs. Leave the teaching of composition to those who will focus on the construction of clear paragraphs and proper sentences.

Unfortunately, the senior professors of English are just as bad.

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