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Professor Paul Lynch to Lead Workshop and Give Talk During Department’s Annual Teaching Workshops

The Department of English and the Hodges Better English Fund will present a talk and workshop by Professor Paul Lynch on Friday, August 12th, during the Department’s annual “Teaching Workshops.”  These professional development workshops provide new teachers with an introduction to our program. For returning graduate teaching associates and lecturers, the workshops provide a chance to renew and share information, as well as to learn about innovative approaches to teaching writing.

Dr. Lynch will lead a workshop,”Lectio Pedagogica,” from 9:00-11:00am, in 1210 McClung Tower,  This workshop will present a contemplative method for  interpreting the experience of teaching. Workshop participants will not only “read” pedagogical situations, but also experience them.  Experience, John Dewey writes, is “the result, the sign, and the reward” of our interaction with he world. It refers not only to what happens, but to how we make sense of what happens. It is never simply “raw” or “cooked,” but is being continually reprocessed. This fluidity presents challenges for making a resource of experience, particularly in the classroom, where the data are overwhelmingly complex.

From 11:15-12:15, Dr. Lynch will give the keynote address, “After (Pedagogy) Failure,” in 1210 McClung Tower.  Recently, composition has begun to re-imagine failure as a normal (if difficult) part of student writing. But as John Schilb notes, teachers are less inclined to welcome our own failures so warmly. Even less do we have language for deeper failure—the sense, described by Paul Kameen—that an entire pedagogical approach no longer functions. Kenneth Burke insists that when we experience failure, we can nevertheless “win in defeat by charging it off to experience.” This presentation will consider pedagogy failure that seems too large to be so easily written off.

Professor Lynch  is an associate professor of English at Saint Louis University, where he directs the writing program. He is the author of After Pedagogy: The Experience of Teaching and the co-editor with Nathaniel Rivers of Thinking with Bruno Latour in Rhetoric and Composition. His work has appeared in College Composition and Communication, College English, Pedagogy, Present Tense, and Rhetoric Review.

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