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Narrative Disruptions in Composition's Culture of Scholarship

Smith Madan, Ryan (2012) Narrative Disruptions in Composition's Culture of Scholarship. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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This dissertation examines the reception of narrative scholarship within Composition Studies. Scholarly narratives—that is, stories of teaching and learning from and about the writing classroom—circulate widely in Composition Studies’ scholarly body, yet their prevalence belies the dismissal they face as unrigorous and atheoretical. I argue that the field should more closely attend to the kinds of knowledge narrative scholarship offers. Further, I contend that such an investigation into narrative’s case exposes tacit interpretive practices that circumscribe the discipline’s dominant ways of reading scholarly work. Narrative scholarship, and the field’s arguments over its (il)legitimacy, have potential to productively “disrupt” dominant practices of scholarly production and consumption that are often perpetuated uncritically and to the discipline’s own detriment. This disruption allows reflection not only about the narrow question of whether stories of teaching and learning have value, but also on the conservative disciplinary commitments that underpin composition’s culture of scholarship. Such self-reflection is important, I maintain, for our own professional identities, for what we invite or discourage in our discipline’s intellectual conversations. But it is equally important for our teaching since the judgments we make about what counts as “worthy” scholarship have consequences for our writing pedagogies—especially for first-year composition courses that ask students to write personal narrative essays.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Smith Madan, Ryanrds22@pitt.eduRDS22
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairSeitz,
Committee MemberSalvatori,
Committee MemberKameen, Paulpkameen@pitt.eduPKAMEEN
Committee MemberLamana, Gonzalolamana@pitt.eduLAMANA
Date: 2 October 2012
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 1 June 2012
Approval Date: 2 October 2012
Submission Date: 14 June 2012
Access Restriction: 5 year -- Restrict access to University of Pittsburgh for a period of 5 years.
Number of Pages: 230
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > English
Degree: PhD - Doctor of Philosophy
Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: Personal Narrative, Writing Pedagogies, Two-Year College, Narratives of Teaching, Cultures of Scholarship, Disciplinarity
Date Deposited: 02 Oct 2012 19:45
Last Modified: 02 Oct 2017 05:15


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