“Critical process writing” seeks to review the history (from the turn of the 20th century to 2020) of writing. It then moves to highlight the “process approach” movement in the late 1960’s and 1970’s centering how the movement changed how educators viewed and, thereby taught, writing. Following is a series of chapters that presents a different genre of writing and includes prompts and examples to help educators return to authentic writing, where the voice of the students, once again, take center stage. “Critical process writing” also includes an introductory chapter on the nature of “critical pedagogy” and a concluding chapter on “How to set up an effective writing program.”
Our wildly diverse country contains multitudes—wanderers and drifters, exiles and refugees, boundary defenders and border-crossers, nomads and immigrants, Underground Railroaders and long-haul riders, free-thinkers and rule-followers. No single story can say it all, for we are people who speak with many tongues, and who refuse to stand still—we’re on the move, on the run, and in the mix, our collective experiences united in motion. Critical Process Writing begins here, for Brett Blake understands that no one is literally “voiceless,” although too many (massively and tragically in American schools) are savagely silenced or heartlessly unheard. Dr. Blake illuminates a sturdy antidote—literacy practices that are collaborative, social, and critical, geared toward co-creating (teacher and student together) a relationship that reveals a wide universe of meaning-making. The result: the poetry of the everyday, the literature of the street, and an authentic encounter in which a teacher, listening with empathy and identification, and a student, seizing an occasion to perform an account of events and experiences, become both more literate and more powerful and intentional in their projects and their pursuits. Critical Process Writing is an indispensable book.
Critical Process Writing
Brett Elizabeth Blake, Ph.D. is a professor of literacy and TESOL at St. John’s University where she is also a Senior Research Fellow in the Vincentian center for Social Justice and Poverty.
Having attended SUNY Stony Brook, Northwestern University and the University of IL at Chicago, Brett has worked with and written extensively on the need, globally, for equity in literacy and language acquisition especially among the most vulnerable.