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The Journal of English Language and Literature , Vol.57, No.6, 1111 ~ 1131, 2011
Preservice Teachers` Responses to Postmodern Picture Books and Deconstructive Reading
Eun Ja Yun
Reading postmodern texts certainly situates readers in roles different from the ones we have been used to. Recently, postmodern metafiction forms a significant body of children`s literature that is intended to challenge and transform the conventions of books in the digital age. While many studies have been done as to how child readers have capabilities to appreciate and interpret postmodern metafiction picture books, few studies on teachers and preservice teachers` reactions are not readily available. The role of teachers and preservice teachers are crucial for child readers to have access to affluent reading resources. This study discusses how preservice teachers read and respond to postmodern metafiction picture books using a deconstructive approach by means of binary opposites. Data was collected with 14 preservice teachers as to their likes/dislikes, reading levels, and reading paths about postmodern metafiction picture books. Expected pedagogical implications for literacy and language education were requested to address in their reading diaries and response papers. With their likes/ dislikes, since binary opposites always imply the hierarchy of power and value, the likes is apparently more valued and appreciated over their dislikes. This differentiated values are discussed in more detail with three recurring themes-Education, Morals and Behavior, and Tradition. With reading levels, there seems to be a gap existing between the authors` implied reader and literary critics` and the preservice teachers` ideal readers for the postmodern metafiction picture books. Although many studies have already revealed young readers` capability of appreciating postmodern metafiction, it depends a lot more on the teachers and preservice teachers whether children`s right to have access to affluent literacy resources is respected or not. Preservice teachers` awareness of the potential of postmodern metafiction will work as an initial step to bring and realize the new reading path and new literacies in classrooms. By challenging metanarratives of children`s literature, preservice teachers` readings of postmodern picture books reveals potentials to raise different reading paths and develop new literacies and other educational implications.
Key Words
Postmodern Picture Books, Metafiction, Deconstructive Reading, Binary Opposites, Reading Path, New Literacies,영미문학, 문화연구, 비교문학, 비평이론, English and American Literature, cultural studies, comparative literature, critical theory
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