Overview

One of the first collections to focus on independent writing programs, A Field of Dreams offers a complex picture of the experience of the stand-alone. Included here are narratives of individual programs from a wide range of institutions, exploring such issues as what institutional issues led to their independence, how independence solved or created administrative problems, how it changed the culture of the writing program and faculty sense of purpose, success, or failure.

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Field Of Dreams

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Overview

One of the first collections to focus on independent writing programs, A Field of Dreams offers a complex picture of the experience of the stand-alone. Included here are narratives of individual programs from a wide range of institutions, exploring such issues as what institutional issues led to their independence, how independence solved or created administrative problems, how it changed the culture of the writing program and faculty sense of purpose, success, or failure.

Further chapters build larger ideas about the advantages and disadvantages of stand-alone status, covering labor issues, promotion/tenure issues, institutional politics, and others. A retrospective on the famous controversy at Minnesota is included, along with a look at the long-established independent programs at Harvard and Syracuse.

Finally, the book considers disciplinary questions raised by the growth of stand-alone programs. Authors here respond with critique and reflection to ideas raised by other chapters—do current independent models inadvertently diminish the influence of rhetoric and composition scholarship? Do they tend to ignore the outward movement of literacy toward technology? Can they be structured to enhance interdisciplinary or writing-across-the-curriculum efforts? Can independent programs play a more influential role in the university than they do from the English department?



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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780874214642
  • Publisher: Utah State University Press
  • Publication date: 4/1/2003
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 326
  • File size: 480 KB

Table of Contents

Introduction: Cautionary Tales about Change 1
I Local Scenes: Stories of Independent Writing Programs 19
1 The Origins of a Department of Academic, Creative, and Professional Writing 21
2 Internal Friction in a New Independent Department of Writing and What the External Conflict Resolution Consultants Recommended 38
3 Writing Identity: The Independent Writing Department as a Disciplinary Center 50
4 Small but Good: How a Specialized Writing Program Goes It Alone 62
5 Independence Fostering Community: The Benefits of an Independent Writing Program at a Small Liberal Arts College 75
6 No Longer Discourse Technicians: Redefining Place and Purpose in an Independent Canadian Writing Program 90
II Beyond the Local: Connections Among Communities 105
7 Learning as We G(r)o(w): Strategizing the Lessons of a Fledgling Rhetoric and Writing Department 107
8 Creating Two Departments of Writing: One Past and One Future 130
9 Who Wants Composition? Reflections on the Rise and Fall of an Independent Program 153
10 Revising the Dream: Graduate Students, Independent Writing Programs, and the Future of English Studies 170
11 Locating Writing Programs in Research Universities 186
12 Wagering Tenure by Signing on with Independent Writing Programs 213
III The Big Picture: Implications for Composition, English Studies and Literacy Education 231
13 A Rose by Every Other Name: The Excellent Problem of Independent Writing Programs 233
14 Keeping (in) Our Places, Keeping Our Two Faces 247
15 Managing to Make a Difference 253
16 Stasis and Change: The Role of Independent Composition Programs and the Dynamic Nature of Literacy 268
17 Bigger than a Discipline? 278
Afterword: Countering the Naysayers: Independent Writing Programs as Successful Experiments in American Education 295
References 301
Notes on Contributors 312
Index 316
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