It looks like we will have a very rich discussion in tonight's class, based on the thoughtful responses you posted to Moodle and the deep questions articulated by our first group of student discussion leaders.

Tonight our time will be split between the two chapters we read. But before we dive into the questions prepared for us and see where that discussion leads, I would like to spend about 10 minutes getting "warmed-up" if you will.

1.) Are there any "basic comprehension" questions that arose for you during your reading?
(Before we get into the subtle distinctions or begin to question and critique, I think it is a good idea to open up a few minutes for basic questions -- which we all have from time to time. We'll try to do this each class. So please keep track of questions that may arise. You can also address them to the Moodle forum during the week. )

2.) A few "easy" questions:
(Your classmates take us into fairly abstract territory in the questions they prepared. Let's begin with two questions that may orient us a bit)
  • How does the "theorized" concept of reading that Nealon and Giroux explain change the "commonsense" idea of reading that we and many people often use? Can you explain how "author" relates to "authority"?

  • Nealon and Giroux explain how many contemporary theories of language and literature share the view that reading is NOT simply a transfer of meaning from speaker to listener, from writer to reader. This troubles some students (and thrills others) because it seems to say that there is now no singular meaning. The theorized explanation of reading could be summed up: reading is a process whereby meaning is produced in relation to certain contexts. But what does this mean? And if this is true, how does it avoid the consequence of infinite meanings?