Harvard Educational Review
  1. Fall 2021 Issue »

    Moving Beyond Interpretive Monism

    A Disciplinary Heuristic to Bridge Literary Theory and Literacy Theory

    In this essay, authors Todd Reynolds, Leslie S. Rush, Jodi P. Lampi, and Jodi Patrick Holschuh provide a disciplinary heuristic that bridges literary and literacy theories. The secondary English language arts (ELA) classroom is situated at the intersection between literary theory and literacy theory, where too often literary theory does not include pedagogical practices and literacy theory does not take disciplinary differences into account. Reynolds and coauthors propose an English Language Arts heuristic for disciplinary literacy to guide teachers toward embracing student-led interpretations. They explore the connections among the Common Core State Standards, New Criticism, and the ELA classroom and focus on the prevalence of interpretive monism, which is the belief that only one interpretation is appropriate for students when reading a literary text. The essay explicates a heuristic for ELA literacy that centers on students actively creating interpretations of and transforming literary texts. By embracing this heuristic, the authors assert, teachers can focus on studentled interpretations of literary texts and thus empower their students.

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    Todd Reynolds (https://orcid.org/0000-0002-0445-1082) is an assistant professor of secondary English education at the University of Wyoming. After teaching high school English for ten years and working in elementary schools as a literacy coach and fifth-grade teacher, he earned a doctorate in literacy education, focusing on dialogic teaching in the English classroom. Reynolds’s work has appeared in journals such as Literacy, Research, and Instruction, Language and Education, Journal of Adolescent and Adult Literacy, and English Teaching: Practice and Critique. His current research focuses on dialogic teaching and disciplinary literacy in English language arts.

    Leslie S. Rush (https://orcid.org/0000-0002-2515-9013) is a professor in the School of Teacher Education at the University of Wyoming, where she has also served as an English and literacy teacher educator and as an administrator. Her research includes the study of disciplinary literacy in English/language arts classrooms, as well as the roles played by instructional coaches in secondary school settings. Rush’s work has appeared in the Journal of Adolescent and Adult Literacy, Journal of College Reading and Learning, English Journal, and Journal of Literacy Research, among other journals. With Lisa Scherff, she served as coeditor of English Education, the journal of English Language Arts Teacher Educators (ELATE), an affiliate of the National Council of Teachers of English.

    Jodi P. Lampi (https://orcid.org/0000-0002-2515-9013) is an associate professor in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction and the director of the Academic Literacy and Learning Program at Northern Illinois University. She teaches developmental reading, learning strategies, disciplinary literacy, methods, and foundations of teaching postsecondary literacy across undergraduate-, graduate-, and doctoral-level courses. Her research covers topics related to conceptualizations of literacy, study and learning strategies, disciplinary literacy, and college teaching and learning. Lampi’s work has appeared in journals such as the Journal of Adolescent and Adult Literacy, Community College Journal of Research and Practice, Journal of College Reading and Learning, and Journal of College Literacy and Learning.

    Jodi Patrick Holschuh (https://orcid.org/0000-0003-3541-9904) is a professor in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction and an assistant dean for faculty development and Strategic Planning for the College of Education at Texas State University. Her teaching focuses on developmental literacy, learning support, and disciplinary literacy from the undergraduate to doctoral levels. Her research centers on disciplinary literacy, postsecondary reading and learning, transitions to college learning, and literacy learning in the sciences. Holschuh’s work has appeared in numerous journals, including Journal of Literacy Research, Review of Research in Education, Journal of College Reading and Learning, and Journal of Adolescent and Adult Literacy.
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    Fall 2021 Issue


    “What’s Going to Happen to Us?”
    Cultivating Partnerships with Immigrant Families in an Adverse Political Climate

    Book Notes

    Border Thinking
    Andrea Dyrness and Enrique Sepúlveda III

    Educating for Durable Solutions
    Christine Monaghan

    Schooling for Critical Consciousness
    Scott Seider and Daren Graves

    Charter School City
    Douglas N. Harris

    The Young Crusaders
    V. P. Franklin

    The Last Negroes at Harvard
    Kent Garrett and Jeanne Ellsworth