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Misreading Masculinity: Boys, Literacy, and Popular Culture / Edition 1

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Overview

Post-Columbine has been a time when the issues of popular culture and the behavior of boys have generated more heat than light. This complex, contested intersection has led to censorship and worse-alarm, irrationality, and a failure to examine our ways of teaching, particularly teaching literacy to boys. In this book Tom Newkirk takes an up-close and personal look at elementary boys and their relationship to sports, movies, video games, and other venues of popular culture. Unlike the alarmists, he sees these media not as enemies of literacy, but as resources for literacy.

Through a series of extraordinary interviews, Newkirk listens to young boys, and girls, who describe the pleasure they take in popular culture. They explain the ways in which they use visual narratives in their writing. They even defend their use of violence in their work. Newkirk disproves the simplistic stereotype of boys who are primed to imitate the violence they see. He shows that, rather than mimic, boys most often transform, recombine, and participate in story lines, and resist, mock, and discern the unreality of icons of popular culture.

Using a mixture of memoir, research project, cultural analysis, and critique of published findings, Newkirk encourages schools to ask questions about what counts as literacy in boys and what doesn't, to allow in their literacy programs boys' diverse tastes, values, and learning styles. In other words, if we want boys to join "the literacy club," then we have to invite them in with genres of their own choosing.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780325004457
  • Publisher: Heinemann
  • Publication date: 8/9/2002
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 224
  • Sales rank: 635,979
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.47 (d)

Meet the Author

Thomas Newkirk's most recent books with Heinemann are The Art of Slow Reading (2011), Holding Onto Good Ideas in a Time of Bad Ones (2009) and Teaching the Neglected "R" (2007, coedited with Richard Kent). His Misreading Masculinity (2004) was cited by Instructor Magazine as one of the most significant books for teachers in the past decade. A former teacher of at-risk high school students in Boston, Tom is Professor of English at the University of New Hampshire, the former director of its freshman English program, and the director and founder of its New Hampshire Literacy Institutes. He has studied literacy learning at a variety of educational levels - from preschool to college. His other Heinemann and Boynton/Cook titles include the NCTE David H. Russell Award winning Performance of Self in Student Writing (Boynton/Cook, 1997), Taking Stock: The Writing Process Movement in the 90s (Boynton/Cook, 1994, coedited with Lad Tobin), and Nuts & Bolts: A Practical Guide to Teaching College Composition (Boynton/Cook, 1993). In addition, Tom is coeditor (with Penny Kittle) of Children Want to Write, which is a collection of Donald Graves' most significant writings paired with recovered videotapes that illuminate his research and his inspiring work with children and teachers, and coeditor (with Lisa Miller) of The Essential Don Murray, which gathers the most important insights about writing and teaching writing from "America's Greatest Writing Teacher." Thomas Newkirk has been named the 2010 recipient of the Gary Lindberg Award for his outstanding contributions as a faculty member of the University of New Hampshire. Read the Award Announcement ยป
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Table of Contents

Prologue: The Believing Game

The "Crisis" in Boyhood

Making Sense of the Gender Gap

The Case Against Literacy

Taste and Distaste

Violence and Innocence

Misreading Violence

Making Way for Captain Underpants

A Big Enough Room

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