By Susan Miller
Winner of the 1999 Mina P. Shaughnessy Prize for remarkable study e-book within the box of educating English language, literature, rhetoric and composition.
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Extra info for Assuming The Positions (Pitt Comp Literacy Culture)
It was never part of a canon, yet was always implicated in dominant discourse, so it realigns our ideas about what does and does not count as culturally formative acts of writing. Like the unsettled colonial meanings of private, whose ambiguity warranted these moments of inscription, these texts show how writers inevitably enact the sacrificial tension between immediate events and literary precedents. These claims require that my own writing conveys discomfort with currently traditional methods of literary and historical interpretation, and thus that it attempts simultaneously to display the texts we do not see and to argue that we know them all too well.
The three focal points of this studythe cultural persistence of hegemonic common opinion despite philosophy's attempts to erase it, formal and home lessons in discourse, and evolving gender positions that mark members of each sex as simultaneously themselves and Otherappear in both dominant and defeated aspects. These texts especially manifest the cultural force of extracurricular educational practices, which they themselves fashion and to which they subject their writers. As anxious slave-owners, and as eventually defeated Page 6 victims of the southern identity that they had coveted from the time of Jefferson's Notes on Virginia on, these writers are not unconflicted supporters of exclusionary identity politics.
Briefly, this study shuffles these theories, practices, and politics to highlight how ordinary acts of writing simultaneously appropriate and mutate an expanding range of human identities that become available in specific cultures over time. My focus on how discourse determines what specific groups of people can and cannot be suggests that much of the writing we choose not Page 2 to see is a surface on which cultural norms and shifting desires meet. Plain texts (which is not to say "bad writing") embody the always provisional human identities that are unevenly available in discourse, subject positions that experimental moments of utterance constitute.
Assuming The Positions (Pitt Comp Literacy Culture) by Susan Miller