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Voices on Birchbark

Everyday Communication in Medieval Russia

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Jos Schaeken

In Voices on Birchbark Jos Schaeken explores the major role that writing on birchbark – an ephemeral, even ‘throw-away’ form of correspondence and administration – played in the vibrant medieval merchant city of Novgorod and other cities in the Russian Northwest. Birchbark literacy was crucial to the organization of Novgorodian society; it was integrated into a huge variety of activities and had a broad social basis; it was used extensively by the laity, by women as well as men, by villagers as well as landlords. Voices on Birchbark is the first book-length study of this unique corpus in English. By examining a representative selection of birchbark texts, Jos Schaeken presents fascinating vignettes of daily medieval life and a holistic picture of the pragmatics of communication in pre-modern societies.
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Olga A. Pilkington

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Olga A. Pilkington

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Olga A. Pilkington

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Olga A. Pilkington

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Teaching Modernist Anglophone Literature features fresh classroom approaches to teaching modernism, with an emphasis on pedagogy grounded in educational theory and contemporary digital media tools. It offers techniques for improving students’ close reading, critical thinking/writing, and engagement with issues of gender, race, class, and social justice. Discussions are raised of subjectivity, perception, the nature of language, and the function of art. Innovative project ideas, assignments, and examples of student work are offered in a special annex. This volume fills a gap in higher education pedagogy uniquely suited to the experimental nature of modernism. Madden and McKenzie’s inspiring volume can steer the teaching of modernist literature in creative, new directions that benefit both teachers and students.

Contributors are: Susan Hays Bussey, William A. Johnsen, Benjamin Johnson, Mary C. Madden, Laci Mattison, Precious McKenzie, Susan Rowland, and Kelsey Squire.