chapter  10
24 Pages

The textual cycle of the English classroom

In this, the last descriptive, ‘empirical’ chapter in the book we look at the ‘textual cycle’ of the English classroom – that is, the selection of texts, their presentation and re-production to and for students, and the teacher’s production of new texts. The question ‘What is an appropriate English text?’ has been and remains a highly charged one. It has been asked and answered differently by successive governments since the beginning of the 1990s. The literary texts that are brought into the curriculum constitute the cultural, social and ethical material with which the teacher and the students will need to engage, and they come to form one important element of what English can come to mean. We focus successively on moments of this cycle to show how the larger-level social relations of education work to position teachers and students in this respect, and how they create particular versions of English. The position of media studies in this respect is a case in point (Buckingham and Sefton-Green 1994).