Cover

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pp. 1-1

Title Page, Copyright

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pp. 2-5

CONTENTS

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pp. 5-7

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INTRODUCTION

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pp. 7-11

MUCH TO MY BENEFIT, I have friends and colleagues who encourage me to say things about language and education, particularly with respect to African Americans. They solicit writing, invite me to forums, and prop me up at podiums. They generally seek insight, decisiveness, and controversy, though I wonder sometimes which they most prefer. Notwithstanding...

LANGUAGE AND POLITICS

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A HEIGHTENED SENSE OF LANGUAGEAS EDUCATIONAL AND SOCIAL CRITIQUE

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pp. 13-20

I HAVE LONG BEEN SENSITIVE to how certain terminology informs my perception, partly because of my role in a mass search for an adequate name. Having been Colored, Negro, Black (sometimes with a lower-case b), Afro-American, and African American (sometimes with a hyphen) all in only...

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THE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITYTHAT WRITING IS—AND WRITING INSTRUCTION TOO

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pp. 21-28

WRITING IS NOT AN ACTIVITY that features social responsibility as an option. Writing is social responsibility. When you write, you are being responsible to some social entity even if that entity is yourself. You can be irresponsible as a writer, but you cannot be nonresponsible. This issue probably has been discussed most in literary circles, couched in the long-running...

LANGUAGE AND LITERATURE

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pp. 29-31

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GENOPSYCHOLINGUISTICIDE AND THE LANGUAGE THEME IN AFRICAN AMERICAN FICTION

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pp. 31-44

THESE SHARP WORDS EMANATING from Yaqui Laster's subconscious create a key thematic link between Savior and numerous other fictions in the African American tradition. In conceiving of genocide from a psycholinguistic perspective, Kemp has reflected a characteristic language sensibility,...

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TUCEPT HIGHJOHN AND THE LIMITS OF LANGUAGE PROGRAMMING:A CODA

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pp. 45-50

ARTHUR FLOWERS TAPS OUT, in De Mojo Blues, a tale of post-1960s stagnation. His chief concern, socially, is the collectively weak soul of the African diaspora, and his attempt, artistically, is to paint a vision of ultimate triumph. He forges a modern myth out of African American culture, particularly....

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JULIUS AND JESSEIN 003

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pp. 51-60

FEELING A NEED TO shake things up, flip the script, depart from the skill and drill stuff that transpired in most basic writing courses dubbed ENGW 003,1 decided to have students read several stories that deal extensively with the theme of language empowerment. I wanted them to understand that in some respect these stories address their struggles as...

LANGUAGE AND LEARNING

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pp. 61-63

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ONE MORE TIME FOR PROFESSOR NURUDDIN

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pp. 63-72

YUSUF NURUDDIN, MY BROTHER. Surely the best arrangement is for me to be there at Medgar Evers College to visit your Black Studies courses. But now that I live two hundred fifty miles from Brooklyn, that option is no longer convenient. So, as per your request, I have sent what you need to...

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LANGUAGE LEARNING AND DEMOCRATIC DEVELOPMENT

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pp. 73-86

I HAVE SOUGHT TO AVOID hopping from one bandwagon to another, a behavior characteristic of American educators. My decisions to embrace or reject phonics or teaching grammar or back-to-basics or process writing instruction or critical thinking courses have not been based upon the shrillness...

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AFRICAN AMERICANIN PROCESS

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pp. 87-96

IN 1988, LISA DELPIT achieved a masterstroke of irony. Writing in the Harvard Educational Review, she broached the subject of silence and subsequently hushed much of the audience she was imploring to speak. Her goal in "The Silenced Dialogue: Power and Pedagogy in Educating Other People's Children" was to initiate or redirect conversations about...

LANGUAGE, RACISM, AND RESISTANCE

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pp. 97-99

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A LEGACY OF HEALING: WORDS, AFRICAN AMERICANS, AND POWER

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pp. 99-112

To CLAIM THAT "words will never hurt me" is the all-time number one act of denial. Only a person profoundly hurt by words would attempt this psychological maneuver. I have, in fact, been rather adept at the sticks-and-stones competition but have been nicked quite a bit, along with others of my ethnic group, by the master narrative in which inferiority is...

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GETTING OFF THE HOOK—I MEAN CURVE

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pp. 113-122

SHORTLY AFTER THE PUBLICATION of Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray's tome on intelligence and social policy, I began to have a recurring and disturbing dream. I would be trapped between the covers of the New York Times Book Review impaled on a bell curve. I was an African American hanged one of the new ways, that is, by genteel and intellectual...

A FINAL WORD

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pp. 123-125

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PLAYING WITH THE PATTERNS

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pp. 125-7

THERE ARE TWO MAIN reasons I have resisted, despite considerable urging, following up on the memoir sections of my book Voices of the Self. One, I don't kiss and tell. So I would have to leave a large hole in a narrative about adult life compared to the small one (barely noticed by some) that I left in the tale of my adolescence. I can work with cracks...

INDEX

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pp. 138-141

Back Cover

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pp. 144-144