Tuesday, August 23, 2011



Question: How and why should we deal with Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and/or Transgender(LGBT) literature in the classroom?

Answer/Quote: “Recently, scholars have argued for expanding texts in schools to include children’s and young adult literature with lesbian, gay, bisexual, and/or transgender (LGBT) characters and themes, and for including gay readings of more traditional literature as a means for discussing and countering homophobia and heterosexism in schools….”

Quote: “Most of these studies document the use of a single text in a larger unit or several texts in a single lesson, with the general assumption that all students are heterosexist if not outright homophobic….”

Quote: “These conflicting and simultaneous contexts allowed for, provoked, and even demanded discourses that are neither monolithically liberatory nor oppressive. We suggest that no single discourse  is. Rather, putting complementary and competing discourses in conversation with each other around diverse texts and in complex contexts provides opportunities for conflicts, resulting in ruptures releasing potential and promise for change.”  P. 149.

Comment: If I understand the findings of this research, discussions of LGBT literature could become a donnybrook. I’m a professional English teacher, not a psychologist.  I'm also not an activist on behalf of causes. If students introduce the subject, I will concentrate on the writing skills used to express ideas, without comment on the subject matter, as I will do for most students who write on controversial subjects. I don’t feel that I can control discussions on most controversial subjects. Students can write about their opinions, but, for me, I will stay out of it. RayS.

Title: “Analyzing Talk in a Long-Term Literature Discussion Group: Ways of Operating Within LGBT-Inclusive and Queer Discourses.” MV Blackburn and CT Clark Reading Research Quarterly (July/August/September 2011), 222-248.

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