Reflections upon Reading #3–Grand Narratives and Higher Education, by Sara Franks

Well, I had a draft of this saved, which has vanished into thin electrons, and at this point, I cannot reconstruct it as my first impressions of the reading have been lost.  The short version is that I found myself being told that we should be all-inclusive in our worldview, and yet the idea of a “grand narrative” was used as a disparaging term in reference to some folks’ way of framing the sweep of time and history (and perhaps, the teaching of it).  Yes, I agree that those who think that Western Civilization is synonymous with World History have missed the boat, but not having the absolute diversity of opinions on the table is not my idea of a good discussion, either.

Interdisciplinary work makes all the sense in the world, especially as I see it being played out here at UA.  English instructors are collaborating with library instructors to help beginning freshmen find their feet in library use and scholarly communication.  Being aware that the Information Cycle is born and bred to be a survivor in this 24/7/365 world and is driven by commercial and power-structure interests should be no surprise to freshmen.  Showing them a way around an information power structure that seems more interested in Jersey Shore than their (the students’) long-term health and well-being is to assist in developing life skills that will be with those students forever.  Sign me up, and I thank you for the opportunity.

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