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FROM Education Review (September 2009).
In Deranging English/Education: Teacher Inquiry, Literary Studies, and Hybrid Visions of "English" for 21st Century Schools, John Staunton shares his vision for "deranging" English/Education through the lens of his teaching and collaborative work with colleagues, including secondary teachers, university instructors, and students.
Throughout this text, Staunton explores the complexities and complications that occur at the sites where pedagogical and literary studies intersect in the field of English/Education. He questions current paradigms, suggesting that "...it may be time for us to acknowledge that both college and secondary English need to change radically at the curricular and pedagogical levels if either is to succeed or even survive" (p. 22). In this call for change, he makes the case for "deranging" traditional conceptions of teaching English. .... This book offers intriguing and imminently practical approaches for working with this issue.
Deranging English/Education is a theoretical book, but it is also a teaching book. Staunton includes rich examples of his exploration of pedagogical practices across diverse settings with a variety of co-teachers and co-researchers
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A 19th-century merman, a 17th-century poet and nun, an aspiring magician with a box cutter poised over a classic of 20th-century poetry, and a group of inquiring teachers turned classroom researchers join together with an assortment of textual and classroom artifacts to offer a vision of what "English" can be for 21st-century schools.
Deranging English/Education brings these and other hybrid figures to bear on the troubling institutional and theoretical divisions between the fields of English studies and English teacher education. In a series of case studies drawn from his own experiences as a professor of English education and American literature, John Staunton shows us what can happen when we "derange" traditional perspectives on research, teaching, and the curriculum.
Throughout this journey, Staunton continually invites us to see the enterprise of English/Education from the range of subject positions with stakes in the future of English. Preservice teachers, classroom teachers, teacher-researchers, and teacher educators all get a chance to speak to what it means to live and work on that border between English and Education.
"Compelling reading for anyone interested in English studies and its teaching. Staunton disrupts our current thinking of what we should be doing as English educators and helps us to see 'with difference' how it might be otherwise. It's one of the best books on teaching English I have read."
--Lil Brannon, University of North Carolina at Charlotte
FROM Back Cover:
"Staunton's work offers the ideal balance of the theoretical and the practical. His notions of derangement and 'found pedagogies' helped me think anew about what it means to prepare future English teachers, while his descriptions of the classroom practices he initiated and observed gave me a wealth of new teaching strategies to try out in my own classroom."
-- James M. Lang, Assumption College
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