Clueless in Academe: How Schooling Obscures the Life of the Mind

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Yale University Press, Oct 1, 2008 - Education - 320 pages
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Gerald Graff argues that our schools and colleges make the intellectual life seem more opaque, narrowly specialized, and beyond normal learning capacities than it is or needs to be. Left clueless in the academic world, many students view the life of the mind as a secret society for which only an elite few qualify.

In a refreshing departure from standard diatribes against academia, Graff shows how academic unintelligibility is unwittingly reinforced not only by academic jargon and obscure writing, but by the disconnection of the curriculum and the failure to exploit the many connections between academia and popular culture. Finally, Graff offers a wealth of practical suggestions for making the culture of ideas and arguments more accessible to students, showing how students can enter the public debates that permeate their lives.
 

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Contents

In the Dark All Eggheads Are Gray
1
INTELLECTUALISM AND ITS DISCONTENT
81
COMMUNICATIVE DISORDERS
113
TEACHING THE CLUB
209
How to Write an ArgumentWhat Students and Teachers Really Need to Know
275
Notes
279
Index
299
Copyright

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About the author (2008)

Gerald Graff is a professor of English and education at the University of Illinois at Chicago. He is the author of several books including Professing Literature: An Institutional History, Beyond the Culture Wars: How Teaching the Conflicts Can Revitalize American Education, and Clueless in Academe: How Schooling Obscures the Life of the Mind.

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