The title of this book is concerned with the axis between pedagogy and theory, creating a productive interaction and synthesis of the two, and so this review also focuses on these interrelations. Of all the major figures involved in the advent of theory on the American shores, Robert Scholes was the only one who had a burning concern with connecting the new ideas with teaching. When Jonathan Culler, acclaimed for his Structuralist Poetics (1975), visited my campus shortly after his book was published, I invited him to my graduate pedagogy seminar. He was tactful and gracious in talking to the future teachers, but he made it clear that at that point theory could and should not be applied to pedagogy any more than quantum mechanics should be taught to beginning physics students. Scholes, on the other hand, is in the line of pragmatic thinking that maintains abstract ideas...
Why Robert Scholes's Utopian Vision Did Not Become Reality, and How to Make It Happen
Martin Bickman is professor of English and President's Teaching Scholar at the University of Colorado Boulder, where he teaches courses in pedagogy and American literature. His book Minding American Education: Reclaiming the Tradition of Active Learning (2003) won the Outstanding Book Award from the American Education Research Association. He has also edited Approaches to Teaching Melville's Moby-Dick (1985) and Uncommon Learning: Thoreau on Education (1999) and authored American Romantic Psychology (1988) and Walden: Volatile Truths (1992). Next fall he will teach a course in the new Writing and Public Sphere minor, Writing for the Real World: Transforming Education.
Martin Bickman; Why Robert Scholes's Utopian Vision Did Not Become Reality, and How to Make It Happen. Pedagogy 1 January 2023; 23 (1): 201–208. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/15314200-10082146
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