Getting Restless: Rethinking Revision in Writing Instruction
- Journal of Advanced Composition
In Getting Restless, Nancy Welch calls for a reconception of what we mean by "revision," urging compositionists to rethink long-held beliefs about teacher-student relations and writing practices. Drawing primarily on feminist and psychoanalytic theories, she considers how revision can be redefined not as a process of increasing orientations toward a particular thesis or discourse community, but instead as a process of disorientation: an act of getting restless with received meanings, familiar relationships, and disciplinary or generic boundaries--a practice of intervening in the meanings and identifications of one's text and one's life.
Using ethnographic, case-study, and autobiographical research methods, Welch maintains two consistent aims throughout the study:
In achieving these ends Welch examines three academic sites: a campus writing center, undergraduate writing classrooms, and a summer workshop for K-12 teachers.
This book will appeal to a wide audience, including classroom and writing center teachers, historians and theorists in composition and rhetoric, feminist theorists, and those engaged in literacy studies, teacher education, and connections/tensions among teaching, writing, and psychoanalysis.
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They do not describe the ways students and teachers resist revision, do not yet
examine this resistance as meaningful. In this chapter I'll work to recover one
chronicle of loss, violence, and compromise, exploring the shifting and conflictual
A student's resistance to this revision-as-death-work is very much a part of the
transference relationship. Resistance for Lacan is the mark of a divided self
striving to maintain unity and stability even as the self perceives contradictions
and gaps ...
Despite their many differences, these students believe they face a strict choice
between resistance or assimilation; at this crossroads they gravitate to the writing
center.2 For two semesters I've followed four graduate student writers — from ...
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Rethinking Revision in Writing Instruction
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