Students can sometimes be resistant to discussing issues of diversity in the English classroom, making it a challenge for instructors to hold honest and enlightening exchanges about race, sexuality, gender, and other facets of human identity. This essay explores various pedagogical strategies the author has successfully employed when teaching texts that highlight diverse perspectives. She focuses specifically on global feminist literature by way of one primary example, the contemporary Australian Aboriginal novel Home by Larissa Behrendt, which highlights the “stolen generations” of Aboriginal and mixed-descent children and the many repercussions of those atrocities on future generations. After providing a brief overview of the novel, she discusses the successful techniques she has utilized in the classroom to help students prepare for and critically analyze this text. These approaches include interrogating the term diversity itself, providing historical and cultural context to the various issues illuminated in the novel, viewing related visual discourses such as film, and crafting writing and discussion assignments for the students to complete both in and out of class. These pedagogical strategies could be useful in any English classroom that focuses on issues of diversity.
Research Article|January 01 2013
Julie M. Barst; Pedagogical Approaches to Diversity in the English Classroom: A Case Study of Global Feminist Literature. Pedagogy 1 January 2013; 13 (1): 149–157. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/15314200-1814278
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