• Do You know a Creon?: Making Literature Relevant in an Omani University

    Marielle R. Risse (see profile)
    CLCS Global Arab and Arab American, HEP Teaching as a Profession, LLC Arabic, LSL Second-Language Teaching and Learning, RCWS Literacy Studies, RCWS Literacy Studies
    Arabic language, Comparative literature, Education, Middle Eastern literature
    Item Type:
    Book chapter
    arab world, literature, teaching
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    My paper explores how to choose literature texts which solve the dual purpose of teaching English skills (speaking, reading, writing and listening), as well as teaching students to look at poems, short stories, novels and dramas as relevant to their own life, full of characters who they already know and situations they recognize. I argue for the need of mixing Arabic literature in translation, canonical English texts and modern writers to created syllabi with texts that are both academically suitable and interesting for Middle Eastern students. To show the efficacy to this method, I will include examples of students’ reaction to such syllabi. I will also include a brief review of articles about the challenges and benefits of using multi-cultural literature in the classroom. Providing texts that encourage students to notice universal human characteristics, whether fighting on a pirate ship in Peter Pan, dueling with a braggart in Cyrano De Bergerac or becoming, for ten minutes, the imperious Creon in Sophocles’ Antigone, means that improvement in English language skills is matched by a wider understanding of humanity.
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    4 months ago
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