The major aim of this series is to bring rural education and rural existence back into critical conversations. There is overwhelming attention in scholarly publications in education on urban areas in most cases to the exclusion of rural education. It is crucial that we take a critical look at rural education not only in the United States but internationally to understand the necessity of analyzing the class, race, gender, LGBTQ, issues involved in rural schooling and its environment. Not only rural schooling should be analyzed specifically but its relationship to rural culture and the ways in which media contributes to and forms people’s understandings and views of the rural.
Authors are cordially invited to submit proposals and/or full manuscripts to the Acquisitions Editor,
Evelien van der Veer.
Series cover image is titled
Moncure, North Carolina school house k-12 by Frank Bird III.
This chapter explores issues in critical media literacy centering on a discussion of comic books and graphic novels, particularly Sin City: The Hard Goodbye (Miller, 2005). The discussion includes the entanglement of graphic novels within the context of consumer culture and commodification, the questions surrounding the “legitimacy” of such texts, the impact that these artifacts of popular culture have on the identity formation of youth, the reactions of students to the use of graphic novels in the classroom and the exploration of the issues of race, class and gender that are raised as result of the study of graphic novels in the classroom. It does mean that the so-called ‘literary canon’, the unquestioned ‘great tradition’ of the ‘national literature’ has to be recognized as a construct, fashioned by particular people for particular reasons at a certain time (Eagleton, 1983, p. 11).
The theoretical perspective of this study is a combination of critical theory and literary criticism. The serious study of the history, development and reception of graphic novels is enriched by the application of such theoretical perspectives, places them within a 21st century context and makes connections between popular culture, youth and critical pedagogy. Put another way, for radical literacy to come about, the pedagogical should be made more political and the political more pedagogical. In other words, there is a dire need to develop pedagogical practices which bring teachers, parents, and students together around new and more emancipatory visions of community (Giroux in Freire and Macedo, 1987, p. 6).
The series critically investigates and informs the construction of youth identity and identity in general through the study of various forms of contemporary media. It will expand the notions of critical media literacy and its implications for multiple understandings of culture and youth. Since popular culture (including media texts) is one of the primary sites of education for our youth, and all of us, it is crucial for those scholars involved in critical media studies to discuss these issues in book form. The scope of books in this series will include scholarly investigations into the connections among the symbolic order, various forms of cultural artifacts and multiple critical readings of these artifacts within the context of critical/transformational media literacy. How do multiple interpretations of popular culture within conceptualizations of media enhance our understandings of education and how can critical pedagogy, in the Freirian sense, be expanded to develop a student’s critical consciousness of the texts (books, films, games, social media, etc.) that surround them in popular culture.