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Higher Education's Contribution Is To Show People How To Deliberate Over Contentious Issues?

By Author: peter
Total Articles: 191

English studies should also be about embedding our classrooms in a process that allows students to realize that the seemingly most literal language is metaphoric, the result of intense negotiation, of bringing disparate worldviews together. It is this vision of language that will enable them to be active participants in local, regional, and national public spheres. In "Rogue Cops and Health Care," Susan Wells takes the prison visiting room as a metaphor for ED Hardy Hoodies engaging our students in public writing.

The image of the visiting room suggests that our work establishes a point of exchange between the private, the domain of production, and some approximation of the public sphere. It is not directed at the political opinions of students, however progressive or retrograde, but toward the production and reading of texts that move between the public (the political, abstract, the discussable) and the private. The realignment of rhetorical pedagogy to the public I advocate is not, therefore, a prescription or proscription of a genre of writing. Personal essays are not intrinsically "private"; technical discourse is not necessarily "public." Rather, publicity is constructed as a relation of readers to writers, including notions of rationality and accountability that are continually open to contest. Reform is less about assigning a variety of writing modes than about a particular vision of language, a particular enactment of language politics. Clearly, such an undertaking will take significant work and hard conversations. Yet if we want to ensure that the production of value within an academic program is not seen as simply the circulation of texts, but the creation of venues through which all participants begin to recognize and regard the ownership of such texts and the education of students as a communal responsibility, it is just this set of hard conversations that we must undertake.

The story of the Glassville project is not that our institute or department succeeded in ED Hardy Boots permanently socializing the aesthetic means of production. Glassville did not lead to a moment of epiphany, but to a contentious and difficult process. As I once heard a university president state, "One of the great contributions of higher education is to show people how to deliberate over contentious issues together." By taking on use-value as a guiding principle of our work, I believe that we can contribute to that great tradition.

The most enjoyable aspect of the book, however, is not dependent upon the role of vampyres or fledglings, but on the everyday decisions that characters must make that determine who they are, what they believe in, and how they will treat others. The storyline of Stark and his role as a newly recruited henchman for Kralona leads Zoey to face many difficult ethical decisions, including the question of if being good or evil, and acting on these impulses, is truly a decision or if it is part of one's inherent nature. Zoey believes that it is a choice and tells Stark, "What you really are is how you act most of the time" (p. 275). Readers will recognize themselves and their own experiences as they watch Zoey navigate difficult relationships and question her own beliefs about human nature, loyalty, and trust in this coming-of-age tale.

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