: Wendy Bishop
: 19.98 MB
The theory and criticism of genres of writing was once a stable, staid area of English studies, based largely on a fixed taxonomy of genres and on the tenets of formalism. But with the rise of different postmodern theories, work in sociolinguistics, and the influence of contemporary research, these notions are now under dispute. Wendy Bishop and Hans Ostrom's new book takes a broad look at the new concepts and applications of "genre," presenting several theoretical, critical, and pedagogical perspectives. This collection includes many essays that explicitly concern and/or take into account student writing, including essays exploring links between "process" pedagogy and genre, and between social epistemic pedagogy and genre. Other essays explore the acquisition of genre familiarity; still others, the several possible social functions of genre. By design, these pieces often echo one another, or argue dialectically, in effect collaborating to pursue arguments and lines of inquiry about textual forms and functions. An additional team of contributors wrote brief responses to some of the essays as a way of building conversation and dialogue into the structure of the collection, as a way of inviting readers to imagine their own responses. To showcase these different perspectives, the editors have divided this volume into four sections, comprised of one to six essays each (some with responses), and three intersections where two essayists were paired because their texts either talked to, complicated, or illustrated one another. Bishop and Ostrom state, "Our purpose in stretching and teasing academic writing is not to be clever just for the sake of cleverness; instead we believe that a collection on genre should sweep around its own back door, so to speak; also we know the stretching and teasing and conversing will multiply useful connections, the ones most of us are trying to make these days between our lived lives, our teaching, our scholarship, and our research." Anyone trying to make connections of their own will find this book essential reading.