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The Pedagogy of Pop

Theoretical and Practical Strategies for Success

Edited by Edward A. Janak and Denise F. Blum - Contributions by Yvette Benavides; Seth Besteman; Carrie Brockheim; Colleen Coughlin; Jennifer Culver; Sheila Delony; Mikee Delony; Charity Dishon-Fischer; Brian Duchaney; Jennifer Edelman; Richard Ellefritz; Jennifer Moyer Geiger; Mike Hall; Glinda Fountain Hall; Sylvia Mac; Amy Rakowsky Neeman; David D. Newman; Michelle Parke; Julie Irene Prieto; Bob Reese; Cindy Roberts; Forrest Roth; Ludovic A. Sourdot and Fred Waweru

Media competes with public schools in terms of student engagement and time. However, the two needn't be mutually exclusive. The Pedagogy of Pop: Theoretical and Practical Strategies for Success discusses a variety of strategies and approaches for using social and mass media as tools through which teachers might improve schooling.

While there is a vast body of literature in this field, editors Edward A. Janak and Denise Blum have created a text which differs in two substantive ways: scope and sequence. In terms of scope, this work is unique in two facets: first, it presents both theory and practice in one volume, bridging the two worlds; and second, it includes lessons from secondary and postsecondary classrooms, allowing teachers on all levels to learn from each other. In terms of sequence, The Pedagogy of Pop draws on lessons from both historical and contemporary practice.

The introductory section of Janak and Blum's collection presents a pair of papers that use somewhat different approaches to examine the historical roots of contemporary critique. Part I presents a series of chapters designed to provide guidelines and theories through which educators on all levels can think about their practice, focusing more on the "why" of their approach than the "how." Part II presents a more "hands-on" approach by sharing a variety of specific strategies for incorporating pop culture in all its forms (technology, music, television, video games, etc.) in both secondary and postsecondary classrooms. The conclusion shows the praxis of teaching with popular culture, presenting a counterpoint to current thinking as well as a case study of the best of what can happen when popular culture is applied effectively.
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Lexington Books
Pages: 258Size: 6 3/8 x 9 3/8
978-0-7391-7600-9 • Hardback • December 2012 • $95.00 • (£65.00)
978-0-7391-9756-1 • Paperback • July 2014 • $41.99 • (£27.95)
978-0-7391-7601-6 • eBook • December 2012 • $38.99 • (£24.95)
Edward A. Janak is associate professor of educational studies at the University of Wyoming.

Denise Blum is assistant professor in social foundations at Oklahoma State University.
Introduction: The Past as Prologue
Chapter One - Can We Win the Future by Living in the Past? An Exploration of Nostalgia in Education,
Jennifer Edelman and Edward Janak
Chapter Two - Professional Paradox: Teachers in Film and Television,
Sheila Delony and Mikee Delony
Part One: Theoretical Analyses of Pop Culture
Chapter Three - Making a Modern Man: Disney's Literacy and Health Education Campaigns in latin and South America during WWII,
Julie Prieto
Chapter Four - Uncovering Images of Teaching: Towards a Teacher-Activist Ideal, Sylvia Mac and Denise Blum
Chapter Five - "The Words We Write for Ourselves:" Confronting the Myths of Race, Education, and American Genius in Finding Forrester, Joanna Davis-McElligatt and Forrest Roth
Chapter Six - "If You Should Die Before You Wake..." Bart Simpson and the Genesis of Rebellion,
Brian N. Duchaney
Chapter Seven - From
Desperate Housewives to The Real Housewives of New Jersey to Simply House: Views on Family and Gender in Popular Culture, Amy Neeman and David Newman
Part Two: Improving Instruction, The Pop of Pedagogy
Chapter Eight - Editorial Cartoons as Education: Political Cartoons as Pathways to the Pedagogy of Popular Culture,
Richard Ellefritz
Chapter Nine- iClickers & Voice-Over PPT: Using Technology to Engage Millennials in Learning,
Bob Reese
Chapter Ten - Amending Eurocentric Narratives of African History in the U.S. Classroom: A Popular Culture Approach,
Fred N. Waweru and Mwenda Ntarangwi
Chapter Eleven - Popular Culture and Teacher Education in the 21st Century: The Pedagogical Possibilities of Aliens in America, Ludovic A. Sourdot
Chapter Twelve - "How Does this Sound?" Using Language to Characterize Race in Middle-Earth,
Jennifer Culver
Chapter Thirteen - "World Goin' One Way, People Another:" Using
The Wire and Other Popular Culture Texts to Teach College Writing, Michelle Parke
Conclusion: The Future as Epilogue
Chapter Fourteen - I Don't Get It and That's Okay: Teaching Experiential Film Interpretation,
Jade Lynch-Greenberg and esteban garcia
Chapter Fifteen - My Conversations with Ben: What This Mother Learned from a Ghost Boy about Bullying,
Yvette Benavides
About the Contributors

Editors Janak and Blum draw lessons from historical and contemporary instructional classroom practice. The first part of the book provides guidelines and theories focusing on the "why" of teaching rather than the "how." Part 2 examines a variety of strategies for incorporating pop culture, including technology, music, television, video programming, etc., into lesson planning. Chapters 8 through 13 focus on pop culture as a form of pedagogy that enhances discussion of race, class, and gender in today's classrooms from pre-K-12. In the concluding chapters, pop culture provides the impetus to discuss topics that students are reluctant to discuss in the classroom (e.g., bullying). A new subgenre, creative life writing, is explored in the last chapter. The editors' goal for this book is to expand teachers' views and expand their own practice in the broadest terms. The final case study uses Department of Justice reports and the writings of Kayla Webley to focus on the suicide of Phoebe Prince. The 15-year-old Irish immigrant's text message "I can't take much more" drives home the painful truth about bullying and the power of putting theory into practice. Summing Up: Highly recommended.

For years the argument has raged over whether to teach popular culture in the classroom. Now that that argument is over, the real question—just how should we incorporate popular culture into pedagogy?—is finally being answered with this timely, well-written book. In The Pedagogy of Pop: Theoretical and Practical Strategies for Success, Ed Janak and Denni Blum offer a lively group of theoretically rigorous but classroom accessible ways of using popular culture to throw light on topics including race, class and gender and subjects ranging from The Simpsons to Lord of the Rings. We now know the value of teaching popular culture. With this book, we can finally start translating that directly to the classroom.
Brian Cogan, Molloy College, author of Deconstructing South Park: Critical Examinations of Animated Transgression