Critical Literacy is the theoretical underpinning of this course What does it mean to be positioned within a culture? How does hegemony control your responses to texts?
As Clark Stroup says what is "the role of language in what psychology calls synthetic happiness. To what extent can our language production (and our production of readings) generate happiness within the producer?
Read the Sapir-Whorf theory and consider the role that language has in the construction and evolution of cultural values.Questions to ask when reading a text include:
Who has power? Who is powerless or oppressed and how do I know?How did the author construct this group in this way? Who is silent? Who speaks for who? How do we know if one character is more powerful than another? Which elements of our own lives and context position us to see that character X is more powerful than character Y? An example of this is Stanley and Stella in Streetcar Named Desire
by T. Williams through dialogue, movement and body language we can see Stanley's dominance.Racism/Sexism:
Which group is isolated and ignored? Which group is powerless or dispossessed? Which group is stereotyped and or feminised? How do we know? Once again the behaviour, actions and responses of Stanley, Stella and Blanch in Streetcar Named Desire
by T. Williams demonstrate how women and men act and are portrayed in different ways. How are the characters in The Things They Carried
by T. O'Brien portrayed? Or in Translations
by B.Friel? What about groups in graphic novels where pictures can tell a thousand words? Which pictures, which angles, which point of view is favored or highlighted?
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