2018 Student Research Conference:
31st Annual Student Research Conference

Critical Literacy: Questioning Perspectives, Characters, and Morality in Of Mice and Men

Erin M. Hutchison♦
Dr. Summer Pennell, Faculty Mentor

In this qualitative case study, I explore how using a critical literacy lens to analyze a text impacts students’ views of moral dilemmas and ability to question or critique the roles of characters and perspectives presented. During our reading of John Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men, the students engaged in problem posing during class discussion, individually, and in small groups. This involved questioning the author’s intent, searching for bias, and considering alternative perspectives to those presented in the novel. The research showed three major implications. First, students often did not or were unable to critically analyze literature; they simply engaged in recall of the plot or identified main ideas. Second, students came from different backgrounds that affected their critical literacy analysis. Finally, the research showed that in order to engage students in critical analysis on any level there needed to be consistent, thought-provoking class discussions.

Keywords: critical literacy, novel, question, students

Topic(s):English, Secondary MAE Research

Presentation Type: Oral Paper

Session: 302-5
Location: MG 1090
Time: 2:00

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♦ Indicates Truman Graduate Student
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