Fantasy Media in the Classroom: Essays on Teaching with Film, Television, Literature, Graphic Novels and Video Games

Fantasy Media in the Classroom: Essays on Teaching with Film, Television, Literature, Graphic Novels and Video Games

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Overview

A common misconception is that professors who use popular culture and fantasy in the classroom have abandoned the classics, yet in a variety of contexts—high school, college freshman composition, senior seminars, literature, computer science, philosophy and politics—fantasy materials can expand and enrich an established curriculum.
The new essays in this book combine analyses of popular television shows including Buffy the Vampire Slayer; such films as The Matrix, The Dark Knight and Twilight; Watchmen and other graphic novels; and video games with explanations of how best to use them in the classroom. With experience-based anecdotes and suggestions for curricula, this collection provides a valuable pedagogy of pop culture.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780786459216
Publisher: McFarland & Company, Incorporated Publishers
Publication date: 02/17/2012
Pages: 270
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.80(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Emily Dial-Driver is a professor of English at Rogers State University in Claremore, Oklahoma, and fiction editor of RSU’s Cooweescoowee: A Journal of Arts and Letters. Sally Emmons is an associate professor of English at Rogers State University and the managing editor of Cooweescoowee. Jim Ford teaches humanities, philosophy, and religion at Rogers State University and is director of the honors program. His articles have been published in the Journal of Religion, the Journal of the National Collegiate Honors Council, and Honors in Practice.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents



Preface EMILY DIAL-DRIVER 1

Introduction JIM FORD 3



I. Seeing the Classics in a New Light: Using Fantasy as a Lens in Traditional Classes

Pop Pedagogy JESSE STALLINGS 11

Added Interest, Added Value LAURA GRAY 24

Bruce, Bill, and Barack CAROLYN ANNE TAYLOR 33



II. Integrating New Works: Using Fantasy to Enrich Traditional Classes

Flights of Fantasy JIM FORD 47

Fusion Curriculum EMILY DIAL-DRIVER 58

“We’re Not in Kansas Anymore” SALLY EMMONS 74

Critical Thinking and Post-Apocalyptic Literature MARY M. MACKIE 88

Corruptible Power FRANCES E. MORRIS and EMILY DIAL-DRIVER 105

Breaching Barriers Between Work and Play SHAKA MCGLOTTEN 123

Fantasy Classics: Hobbits and Harry in Interdisciplinary Courses JIM FORD 138



III. New Directions: The Joys of Fantasy Classes

Hansel, Gretel, and Coraline J. RENEE COX 151

The Fantastic Classroom: Teaching Buffy the Vampire Slayer EMILY DIAL-DRIVER 171

Buffy Versus Bella: Teaching about Place and Gender JACQUELINE BACH, JESSICA BROUSSARD and MELANIE K. HUNDLEY 182

Brave New Classroom: Using Science Fiction to Teach Political Theory KENNETH S. HICKS 203

Incarnations of Immortal Creations EMILY DIAL-DRIVER 217

Conclusion JIM FORD 248



About the Contributors 251

Index 255

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Fantasy Media in the Classroom: Essays on Teaching with Film, Television, Literature, Graphic Novels and Video Games 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
rivkat on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Free LibraryThing Early Reviewer book. As it says on the label; the book is divided depending on whether the author teaches a fantasy- (or occasionally sf-) specific course or integrates fantasy into a more traditional curriculum, Harry Potter alongside Shakespeare. Some essays focus on textual analysis¿why John Scalzi¿s novels could be used to teach something about political theory¿and others more on teaching practice. Of interest for thinking about fandom, Jesse Stallings writes: ¿I was surprised to note that most of my students took everything in a novel (or movie, song, television show, graphic work) at face value, never considering why a particular event took place, why a character acted the way he or she did, or why an author describes a particular moment in such detail¿. [Scott McCloud¿s Making Comics helps add] the new question `What if this were like this, or removed completely?¿ ¿ to their tools of analysis.¿ Having taken apart works of fiction in their journals, they were prepared to put them back together in various ways, including their own graphic novels, mock movie posters, and so on. Another thing I learned from the book: composition teachers are apparently really into Philip Zimbardo and the Stanford Prison Experiment. I don¿t know why, but I guess it¿s pedagogically valuable?
The_Hibernator on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Fantasy Media in the Classroom is a collection of essays which describe why fantasy media and popular culture are useful in the classroom. For instance students can learn the same techniques using popular fiction as they can with an old-school class, but they feel more confident in their analyses because they already feel like they are experts on popular culture. These lessons and confidence can then be extrapolated on to classical literature. Fantasy Media in the Classroom also gives examples of how popular culture can be used to design lessons. This book was written mostly from the perspective of teaching college students, but a few essays talk about high school students. It's possible these lessons could also be changed a bit and used for younger students, as well. I think this book would be useful to teachers, even if they don't plan on fully incorporating popular culture in their classrooms, because it may help them to see the benefit of popular culture references their students make during class...and how such references could be embraced as an interesting interpretation rather than brushed off. I am not a teacher, but I found this book interesting because it helped me to better understand what fantasy media says about psychology/sociology/politics.
mitchellray on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Learning begins with motivation. There is no learning unless students are engaged with the subject matter. This is part of the rationale for using popular fantasy media in high school and college courses. Using contemporary works of interest to students also illustrates how skills practiced in the classroom are relevant to everyday life."Fantasy Media in the Classroom" is a book of essays written by teachers using fantasy texts, films, and video games to enhance student learning. These are serious practitioners who provide detailed descriptions of how they integrate fantasy media into courses. These are not frivolous attempts to gain popularity among students and gain points on course evaluations. These teachers are after increasing student learning while maintaining academic rigor. Their essays provide in-depth explanations of the rationale for using fantasy, how to incorporate popular works into course designs, and successes and pitfalls for both the teacher and the student in this approach to learning.Reading the book as a whole will provide instructors with ways to integrate classic and contemporary works; how best to use and present movies; detailed interpretations of popular novels, films, and games; discussion, assignment, and essay test questions; and resources for further reference. There are case studies of using fantasy media to teach interdisciplinary courses, philosophy, political science, and, of course, English literature and composition. However, the techniques used in the examples presented can easily be applied to other disciplines such as religion, history, business, art, science, or whatever subject is being taught. The book is also useful for self-directed learners.This is a helpful resource for any teacher who is searching for ways to make course material more relevant for students. Parents reading the book may be reassured that their children¿s minds are not being destroyed by an interest in fantasy. Homeschoolers will discover ways to channel their children¿s interest in popular media to increase interest in academic subjects. If nothing else, reading this book will likely spark curiosity in exploring the many books, films, and games referenced. This book does a thorough job in illustrating how fantasy can make learning fantastic.
The_hibernators More than 1 year ago
Interesting and helpful Fantasy Media in the Classroom is a collection of essays which describe why fantasy media and popular culture are useful in the classroom. For instance students can learn the same techniques using popular fiction as they can with an old-school class, but they feel more confident in their analyses because they already feel like they are experts on popular culture. These lessons and confidence can then be extrapolated on to classical literature. Fantasy Media in the Classroom also gives examples of how popular culture can be used to design lessons. This book was written mostly from the perspective of teaching college students, but a few essays talk about high school students. It's possible these lessons could also be changed a bit and used for younger students, as well. I think this book would be useful to teachers, even if they don't plan on fully incorporating popular culture in their classrooms, because it may help them to see the benefit of popular culture references their students make during class...and how such references could be embraced as an interesting interpretation rather than brushed off. I am not a teacher, but I found this book interesting because it helped me to better understand what fantasy media says about psychology/sociology/politics.