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Beyond the Bridge Metaphor: Rethinking the Place of the Literacy Narrative in the Basic Writing Curriculum

Anne-Marie Hall and Christopher Minnix
Journal of Basic Writing
Vol. 31, No. 2 (FALL 2012), pp. 57-82
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/43443925
Page Count: 26
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Beyond the Bridge Metaphor: Rethinking the Place of the Literacy Narrative in the Basic Writing Curriculum
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Abstract

Critical analysis of the literacy narrative assignment within the context of the other genres in a basic writing course complicates understandings of the political import of the assignment. While several advocates of the literacy nanative have argued that it has the power of what Jean-François Lyotard has called petits récits, the authors argue that the relationship of the literacy narrative to other genres can also diminish the value of the literacy nanative and create what Lyotard has termed a "differend." While still arguing for the value of the literacy nanative, authors present a nanative about cunicular reform that demonstrates how students can learn to recognize how this genre circulates within the power/knowledge of academic writing. This critical reading of the literacy nanative genre leads the authors to call for a reconceptualization of the assignment as a productive "conflict" that can be utilized to reshape the entire curriculum of the course while still cultivating the skills of argumentation and analysis outlined in the course outcomes.

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