Play and the Politics of Reading
The Social Uses of Modernist Form
By (author) Paul B. Armstrong
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Play and the Politics of Reading by Paul B. Armstrong
Book Description"Classrooms and curricula should be structured to foster the playful interaction that can teach students how to negotiate social and political differences in an emancipatory, noncoercive manner...Teaching reading as a playful exercise of reciprocity with otherness can help prepare students for a democracy understood as a community of communities."-from the "Pedagogical Postscript"Reading is socially useful, in Paul B. Armstrong's view, and can model democratic interaction by a community unconstrained by the need to build consensus but aware of the dangers of violence, irrationality, and anarchy. Reading requires mutual recognition but need not culminate in agreement, Armstrong says; instead, the social potential of reading arises from the active exchange of attitudes, ideas, and values between author and reader and among readers. Play and the Politics of Reading, which has important implications for education, draws on Wolfgang Iser's notion of free play to offer a valuable response to social problems.Armstrong finds that Joseph Conrad, E. M. Forster, Henry James, and James Joyce provide apt examples of the politics of reading, for reasons both literary and political. In making the transition from realism to modernism, these authors experimented with narrative strategies that seek simultaneously to represent the world and to question the means of representation itself. The formal ambiguities and complexities of such texts as Howards End and Ulysses are ways of staging for the reader the difficulties and opportunities of a world of differences. Innovative formal structures challenge readers to reconsider their assumptions and beliefs about social issues.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780801443251
(229mm x 152mm x 21mm)
Imprint: Cornell University Press
Publisher: Cornell University Press
Publish Date: 1-Jan-2005
Country of Publication: United States
Books By Author Paul B. Armstrong
Heart of Darkness, Paperback (January 2016)
"This is the best Norton Critical Edition yet! All my students are becoming intensely interested in reading Conrad-largely because of this excellent work."-Elise F. Knapp, Western Connecticut State University
How Literature Plays with the Brain, Paperback (August 2014)» View all books by Paul B. Armstrong
Examines the parallels between certain features of literary experience and functions of the brain. For the neuroscientific community, this book suggests that different areas of research - the neurobiology of vision and reading, the brain-body interactions underlying emotions - may be connected to a variety of aesthetic and literary phenomena.
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Author Biography - Paul B. Armstrong
Paul B. Armstrong is Professor of English and Dean of the College, Brown University. He is the author of The Challenge of Bewilderment: Understanding and Representation in James, Conrad, and Ford; The Phenomenology of Henry James, and Conflicting Readings: Variety and Validity in Interpretation. He is also the editor of the Norton Critical Edition of Howards End by E. M. Forster and a forthcoming revised Norton Critical Edition of Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad.
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