Friday, January 28, 2011

Topic: Basic Writers

Question: What are the issues in teaching basic writers?

Answer: One issue is whether to include them at the college level. The admission of basic writing (remedial) students at City College of New York started the trend and ended in a sense with City College of New York’s shunting remedial writing and reading students to community colleges. Reviews five books about basic writing What follows is a quick review of the contents of these books and a listing of the books reviewed.

“Taken together, the five books under review here tell the story of the crucial, if not always exemplary, role of basic writing (BW) in the unfinished democratization of American universities and colleges. From these myriad perspectives, access [to college] emerges as the central, most pressing concern. However, each of the authors productively complicates the horizon by raising additional issues….”

Basic Writing. George Otte and Rebecca Williams Mlynarczyk. West Lafayette: Parlor Press and WAC Clearinghouse. 2010.

Basic Writing in America: The History of Nine College Programs. Ed. Nicole Pepinster Greene and Patricia J. McAlexander. Cresskill: Hampton Press. 2008.

Before Shaughnessy: Basic Writing at Yale and Harvard, 1920-1960. Kelly Ritter. Carbondale: Southern Illinois UP. 2009.

The Rhetoric of Remediation: Negotiating Entitlement and Access to Higher Education. Jane Stanley. Pittsburgh: U of Pittsburgh P. 2010.

The Way Literacy Lives: Rhetorical Dexterity ad Basic Writing Instruction. Shannon Carter. Albany: State U of New York P. 2008.

Comment: One of these issues is defining the Basic Writer. In my experience, they come from all levels  of IQ. They are often articulate talkers but disabled writers. They are an interesting and challenging group of individuals. They are difficult to teach. RayS.

Title: “Review: Basic Writing and the Future of Higher Education.” Reviewed by D. Mutnick. College English (January 2011), pp. 322-326.

No comments:

Post a Comment