Most of this section comes from EMPO Word by Shane Abrams. We cut some of his examples and much of his introduction to save space, but we thought Abrams’ theoretical base was worth noting. He envisions this text as a space to advocate for a student-centered writing pedagogy that at once embraces expressivist and social constructivist paradigms of rhetoric. We share his vision. He had two footnotes here. One that was a call out to Paulo Freire and the school of popular/critical pedagogy and social justice education. The second was to place-based education and the pedagogical manifestation of the mantra, “Think Globally; Act Locally.”
As you work through this text, try to find ways to make it relevant to the local community: students can complete a micro-ethnography in a place unique to your location; students could choose research topics that are relevant to the local scene; students could analyze op-eds from the local newspaper.
This isn’t the first time a book has pursued these goal, but Abrams considers his approach a valuable contribution to buoying the perception of value in student writing and we concur and so included it in Expression and Inquiry.