Author Hart, Gwendolyn A
Title Composing metaphors: Metaphors for writing in the composition classroom
book jacket
Descript 401 p
Note Source: Dissertation Abstracts International, Volume: 70-09, Section: A, page: 3452
Adviser: Jennie Nelson
Thesis (Ph.D.)--Ohio University, 2009
This dissertation is a qualitative study of students' and teachers' metaphors for writing in eight sections of required writing courses (freshman and junior composition) at a mid-sized public Midwestern university. Through a series of writing- and discussion-based activities, students and teachers composed and shared their personal metaphors for writing (e.g., Writing is like playing basketball), discussed metaphors for writing taken from the field of composition (e.g., Donald Murray's writing as discovery metaphor), and had several opportunities to revise or change their metaphors for writing
While metaphor researchers often collect and categorize metaphors from various groups such as students and teachers, they rarely allow these groups to share their metaphors with each other. This study was designed to remedy this oversight. Research in teacher training, psychotherapy, and teacher research has shown that metaphor can be a useful communicative tool, bringing people to better understandings of each other's positions and even allowing them to negotiate new positions
This study is organized by four case studies of teachers and their writing classes. All four teachers entered the study with pedagogical conflicts they were trying to work through and developed "metaphorical solutions" to deal with these issues. Through the case study method, this dissertation follows students' and teachers' changing awareness of their own conceptions of writing and the value of metaphor
At the conclusion of this study, all four teachers reported learning something new about their students and reconsidering, and sometimes altering, their pedagogy as a result. Also, participants exhibited greater understanding of the rhetorical properties of metaphor. In the field of composition, metaphor is often regarded as a literary device, not as a rhetorical device. Therefore, composition students often learn only the technical definition of metaphor, not the ways metaphor is central to our views of the world around us. This research suggests that metaphor study should be included in the composition curriculum in order to help students develop the "metaphorical literacy" needed for their daily lives
School code: 0167
Host Item Dissertation Abstracts International 70-09A
Subject Education, Language and Literature
Language, Rhetoric and Composition
Alt Author Ohio University