Teachers, Discourses, and Authority in the Postmodern Composition Classroom

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SUNY Press, Jan 4, 1996 - Education - 201 pages
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This book is a sophisticated analysis of the teacher's role and authority in postmodern academic settings. Xin Liu Gale argues that the teacher's authority is inevitable and indispensable in effective teaching, and that, furthermore, it is necessary for "symbolic imposition." The author insists that teachers and scholars should explore how the teacher's authority functions in the pedagogic context and how it can help students develop critical literacy.
Influenced by the works of Mikhail Bakhtin, Pierre Bourdieu, Jean-Claude Passeron, Paulo Freire, Richard Rorty, and various poststructuralist theorists, Gale investigates the complex relationships among the teacher's and the institution's authority, the teacher's discourse(s) and social and pedagogic roles, and students' discourse(s) and diverse backgrounds. She then proposes a two-level interactional model of teaching that is based on a new discourse relationship characterized by the "edifying" role of the teacher.
 

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Contents

Introduction
1
The New Paradigm and the Questioning of the Traditional Teachers Authority
7
Bourdieu and Passerons Theory of the Traditional Teachers Authority
8
The Changing Classroom and the Questioning of the Traditional Teachers Authority
12
A Perplexing Dimension of the Teachers Authority
27
Reconsidering the Teachers Authority
33
The Institutional Authority as Necessary Evil
34
The Ambiguity of the Authority of Expertise and Personal Authority
46
Changing the Stabilized Social Audience Through Primary Interaction
96
Critical Consciousness Versus Critical Literacy
102
The TwoLevel Interaction as Means to Critical Literacy
107
Edifying Teachers as Enabling Constraints
123
The Concept of the Edifying Teacher
124
Edifying Teachers Edifying Roles
130
The Nurturing Mother and the Edifying Teacher
131
The Emancipator and the Edifying Teacher
135

Rethinking the Relationship of Discourses in the Classroom
57
Discourse as the Site of Struggle
58
Rortys Notion of Normal and Abnormal Discourse
64
Responsive Abnormal Discourse and Nonresponsive Abnormal Discourse
72
Differences Between Responsive Abnormal Discourse and nonresponsive abnormal discourse
78
Reconceiving the Discourse Relationships in the Classroom
87
Discourse as Enabling Constraints
92
Lenas Story as an Indication of the Need for Primary Interaction in the Writing Class
93
The Mediator and the Edifying Teacher
141
Edifying Teachers as Enabling Constraints
145
Conclusion or a New Beginning
152
Notes
159
Works Cited
177
Index
195
Copyright

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About the author (1996)

Xin Liu Gale is Professor in the Department of Rhetoric and Writing at the University of Arkansas, Little Rock.

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