Creating Intellectual Space -

Creating Intellectual Space The Complete Shakespeare Company All the plays in 59 minutes then all again in 1 minute OR, How I found something about

which to write a doctoral thesis. Are you finding it difficult to discover a unique topic for your research? Are you finding it difficult to sustain your interest in the

topic you have chosen because you do not believe it is original? Intellectual space, that piece of the landscape no one else has discovered yet; the idea that will give your research true originality, IS NOT RARE it is everywhere -

in this room outside on the streets in our classrooms above all in language It can be found everywhere, anywhere, because we can CREATE it !. How? By applying a deconstructive approach to understanding

the world. For Derrida: A community of the question... Philosophy is: within the fragile moment when the question is not yet determined enough for the hypocrisy of an answer to have already initiated itself beneath the mask of the question,

and not yet determined enough for its voice to have been already and fraudulently articulated within the very syntax of the question. A community of decision, of initiative, of absolute initiality, but also a threatened community, in which the question has not yet found the language it has decided to see, is not yet sure of its own possibility within the community. A community of the question about the possibility of the question

(Derrida, 2001: 99)." Ask Real Questions We can open intellectual space everywhere by asking real questions. Real questions interrogate the obvious and expose our

assumptions about how the world is constructed. In revealing our assumptions we can challenge and transform them. I asked, "What is curriculum?" Curriculum appears as an obvious concept

that teachers mostly take for granted. When I honestly asked this question I realized I did not know what a curriculum was even though I was writing a term paper about it! Etymology of "Curriculum" The meaning of a word is a socially agreed construct. Etymology is a history

of the formation of such an agreement. Whilst the meaning of a word shifts according to social practices its meaning potential is embedded in its history its etymology. currere - (inf.) to traverse a course

(process); (n.) trajectory of the course that is run (product), conflated with Greek 'syllabus' (misspelling of syttibos (content). cle - suffix meaning either the means by which the verb is achieved or the place in which it occurs. The Space

Opened The Latin infinitive of currere - the student's perspective on the learning process, the nominative - the observer's perspective, conflated with the Greek syllabus - the content; and the meansends symbiosis indicated in the Latin suffix 'cle' are all discussed in the literature to some extent BUT...The place meaning potential of the suffix is almost totally ignored especially in TESOL

curriculum literature. WHY? Why Classroom TESOL? TESOL is assumed to 'take place' in the classroom.

What is the reason for this assumption? How does the classroom differ from other places of language learning? What are the consequences? How could I dis-cover the properties of TESOL classrooms and compare them to the properties of other TESOL places of

learning? I decided to select 15 successful nonmother tongue users of English and simply let them reflect aloud to me on their learning stories. I was sure both classroom and other places would emerge. METHODOLOGY Critical Discourse Analysis (CDA) CDA would enable me to expose the assumptions participants were making about

the nature of the classroom and other places that emerged. Bifurcation of Classroom and Real-Life World All participants bifurcated their classrooms from their experience of their real life worlds. It became clear that for them the classroom was a magic womb as Illich described decades ago in De-Schooling Society (1970).

5 features bifurcating classroom & community 1. Metonymical clusters (lexis) 2. Choice of transitivity processes 3. Modalization especially quasi modal have to 4. Grammatical metaphor 5. Loss of Actor role within the tripartite

subject Metonymical Clusters In the classroom; learning, studying, practicing, doing exercises and memorizing. In the community; participating, sharing, using, practicing, communicating, conversing, judging, negotiating,

implementing, self-managing, selfauditing, anticipating and collaborating . All of the latter presuppose greater learner agency except the agency neutral term practicing which is the only category common to both domains. Transitivity Process Consider the following; at the class you become more listener but when you get outside the class there are so many efforts you need to think of

when to become a listener when to become a speaker Modalization & Grammatical Consider the following; Metaphor the variety she brought in the classroom wasnt just music. Sometimes we had magazines we had to cut up some pictures it was art it wasnt just the

language it was the variety she brought in the classroom that made a big difference. What emerged in this intellectual space? Learner Agency Place-Based Hermeneutic

"I started learning English..." (classroom) "I started learning English..." (home) "I started learning English..." (football field) The Tripartite Subject (Eggins, 2004: 172) grammatical subject: the agent about whom something is predicated thematic subject: the fronted agent the actor: the performative agent of the transitivity process

Power/Knowledge Nexus The classroom, by dint of the power relations in which it is embedded, is marked by learner subject positions that are denuded of the actor role: they are defined

by lack of learner agency. Consequences of Denuded Agency? Consider this view of classroom learning; a burden I have to learn this so its on the back of your mind. Youre always

thinking I have to learn something Domains of Place & Learner Agency Cline The classroom Interim Educational Places Community Places Learner agency generally increases as the student moves further away from the classroom and the educational institution

Model of Place Domains and Learner Agency Cline Classroom Interim Places Community Primary, Secondary,

Tertiary, Non-Communicative/ Communicative Formal/Informal Within/Peripheral/Beyond Home/Work/Service/Social Cultural/Industrial International/Virtual Low Learner Agency

Medium Learner Agency High Learner Agency Intellectual Space Interrogating the lacuna of place in TESOL curricula opened up a fascinating

intellectual space. This fascination provided the motivation to persist and complete a doctoral thesis.

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