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Research conceptions of adult and college reader response to literature 1990

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RESEARCH CONCEPTIONS OF ADULT AND COLLEGE READER RESPONSE TO LITERATURE By KAREN EBERDT B. A., McGill University, 1970 M. A., University of Waterloo, 1980 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY in THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES (Language Education Department) We accept t h i s thesis as conforming to the required standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA October 1990 © Karen Eberdt, 1990 In presenting this thesis in partial fulfilment of the requirements for an advanced degree at the University of British Columbia, I agree that the Library shall make it freely available for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of this thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the head of my department or by his or her representatives. It is understood that copying or publication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my written permission. Department of Language Education The University of British Columbia Vancouver, Canada N D a t e nreRmbP.r 12 f 1990. DE-6 (2/88) ABSTRACT "Response to l i t e r a t u r e " i s an educational notion which generally ref e r s to an o r a l or written reaction to a non-expository published work such as a short story or poem. This h i s t o r i c a l analysis investigates conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e i n research with adults and college students. The d i s s e r t a t i o n problem derives from an apparent s h i f t i n emphasis from the text towards the reader i n research on response to l i t e r a t u r e (Purves, 1985). The underlying assumption of t h i s suggestion i s that there are h i s t o r i c a l l y predominant research conceptions. This d i s s e r t a t i o n documents these ideas with adult and college readers' responses to l i t e r a t u r e . The procedure was f i r s t to e s t a b l i s h foundation conceptions of "response" and " l i t e r a t u r e " from t h e o r e t i c a l considerations of these terms. Next, studies derived from major bibliographies were examined i n order to determine the general emphasis based on the research purpose, l i t e r a r y work, and response task. Predominant research conceptions of both "response" and " l i t e r a t u r e " were delineated by decades, from the f i r s t c i t e d study i n 1912. Results of the analysis concerned conceptions of both " l i t e r a t u r e " and "response". F i r s t , research conceptions of " l i t e r a t u r e " generally focused on p r i n t , rather than o r a l performance. In addition, there was a general research move from the use of meaningless s y l l a b l e s and fragments of poetry (1910-39); through the use of a d i v e r s i t y of genres such as newspaper a r t i c l e s , comprehension t e s t items, and novels (1940-69); to a contemporary focus on short s t o r i e s and poems (1970-89). Second, research conceptions of "response" supported the suggestion of a general s h i f t from conceptions which focused on textual elements such as rhythm, sounds of language and l i t e r a r y merit (1920-39); through those which focused on aspects of the reader such as personality changes, preferences and developmental differences (1940-69) ; to those which emphasized elements of response i t s e l f such as process, stance, and context (1970-89). Possible reasons for the s h i f t s i n emphasis were explored i n r e l a t i o n to general s o c i e t a l conditions and the changing image of the college student. From an educational perspective, the observed changes suggest a move towards empowerment of the learner i n the classroom. This trend corresponds to the increasing pedagogical emphasis on holism and collaboration. iv TABLE OF CONTENTS ABSTRACT . TABLE OF CONTENTS LIST OF TABLES . ACKNOWLEDGMENT . i i i v v i i v i i i CHAPTER ONE: OVERVIEW 1 I . I n t r o d u c t i o n I I . S i g n i f i c a n c e I I I . T h e o r e t i c a l framework I V . Problem f o r m u l a t i o n V . Statement o f the problem V I . Methodology A . P r o c e d u r e V I I . Overview o f d i s s e r t a t i o n c h a p t e r s CHAPTER TWO: FOUNDATION CONCEPTIONS OF "LITERATURE" 19 I . I n t r o d u c t i o n I I . Overview I I I . " L i t e r a t u r e " : d i c t i o n a r y meaning I V . " L i t e r a t u r e " as a l l p r i n t e d mat ter V . " L i t e r a t u r e " as a e s t h e t i c language V I . Summary V I I . C o n c l u s i o n CHAPTER THREE: FOUNDATION CONCEPTIONS OF "RESPONSE TO LITERATURE" 3 8 I . I n t r o d u c t i o n I I . Overview I I I . "Response t o l i t e r a t u r e " : c o n v e n t i o n a l meanings I V . Importance o f l i t e r a c y V . P e d a g o g i c a l r e sponse t o l i t e r a t u r e : m e c h a n i s t i c and new paradigm f o u n d a t i o n s A . T e x t - o r i e n t e d B . R e a d e r - o r i e n t e d C . R e s p o n s e - o r i e n t e d V I . Summary V I I . C o n c l u s i o n CHAPTER FOUR: GROWTH AND DIVERSITY (1910 - 49) 75 I . I n t r o d u c t i o n I I . Overview I I I . S o c i a l and p e d a g o g i c a l c o n d i t i o n s : 1910-19 a . R e s e a r c h : p s y c h o l o g y s e t s the s tage I V . S o c i a l and p e d a g o g i c a l c o n d i t i o n s : 1920-29 a . R e s e a r c h : the r e a d e r and the t e x t , V . S o c i a l and p e d a g o g i c a l c o n d i t i o n s : 1930-39 a . R e s e a r c h : a e s t h e t i c s and a p p r e c i a t i o n V I . S o c i a l and p e d a g o g i c a l c o n d i t i o n s : 1940-9 V a. Research: peak of d i v e r s i t y i n conceptions VII. Summary VIII. Conclusions CHAPTER FIVE: TRANSITION (1950-69) 129 I. Introduction I I . S o c i a l and pedagogical conditions: 1950-59 a. Research: s t a b i l i t y and conservatism I I I . S o c i a l and pedagogical conditions: 1960-69 a. research: return to the reader IV. Summary V. Conclusions CHAPTER SIX: EMPOWERMENT OF THE READER (1970-89) 161 I. Introduction I I . Overview I I I . S o c i a l and pedagogical conditions: 1970-79 a. Research: emphasis on response IV. S o c i a l and pedagogical conditions: 1980-89 A. Research: context predominates V. Summary VI. Conclusions CHAPTER SEVEN: SUMMARY . 204 I. Overview I I . Conceptual summary of Chapters One through Six A. Research conceptions compared with foundation conceptions B. Research conceptions compared with changing s o c i a l conditions C. Research conceptions compared with changing image of the college student D. Research conceptions compared with changes i n the college teaching of English CHAPTER EIGHT: CONCLUSIONS AND FUTURE DIRECTIONS: THE LARGER CIRCLE 220 I. Introduction I I . Overview I I I . Mechanistic metaphor: conceptual change as succession IV. C u l t u r a l - p o l i t i c a l metaphor: conceptual change as ideology V. Transactive metaphor: conceptual change as l i v i n g e n t i t y VI. Holonomic metaphor: speculation on the future VII. Summary VIII. Reflections B I B L I O G R A P H Y . . . . A P P E N D I X O N E : C R I T I C A L B I B L I O G R A P H I E S OF T H E R E S E A R C H . A P P E N D I X TWO: S T U D I E S NOT A V A I L A B L E FOR T H E A N A L Y S I S . A P P E N D I X T H R E E : T A B L E S OF STUDY C H A R A C T E R I S T I C S v i i LIST OF TABLES I . CHARACTERISTICS OF STUDIES: 1910-9 311 I I . CHARACTERISTICS OF STUDIES: 1920-9 312 I I I . CHARACTERISTICS OF STUDIES: 1930-9 313 IV. CHARACTERISTICS OF STUDIES: 1940-9 315 V. CHARACTERISTICS OF STUDIES: 1950-9 318 V I . CHARACTERISTICS OF STUDIES: 1960-9 321 V I I . CHARACTERISTICS OF STUDIES: 1970-9 32 6 V I I I . CHARACTERISTICS OF STUDIES: 1980-9 333 v i i i ACKNOWLE DGMENT I would l i k e to express my deepest gratitude to the following people: to V i c t o r Froese, whose i n t e g r i t y , s e n s i t i v i t y and imagination guided my work; to Alan Purves, whose generosity i s matched only by hi s p r e c i s i o n and rigorous standards, not a l l of which I f e l t I met; and to Richard Beach, through whose work on two monumental bibliographies I discovered a path. Appreciation must also go to the fa c u l t y and s t a f f of the University of B r i t i s h Columbia Language Education Department for the pro f e s s i o n a l l y e x i t i n g and supportive atmosphere; to Patrick Dunn and Patrick Atkinson i n the I n t e r l i b r a r y Loan Department for both e f f i c i e n c y and resourcefulness; and to Linda Gill-Aranha, whose u n f a i l i n g good humour enhanced the whole process. F i n a l l y , I must express appreciation to my children, Brian and Caroline, for support, encouragement and breaks from my work which were f i l l e d with good times and laughter; and above a l l , to my husband Frank, who makes everything worthwhile and s p e c i a l . / CHAPTER ONE: OVERVIEW I. Introduction 1 I I . Significance 2 A. Significance of response to l i t e r a t u r e . . 2 B. Significance of research on the responses of adults and college students 3 C. Significance of an examination of research conceptions 4 I I I . Theoretical framework 5 A. Nature of perception 5 B. Method of c l a r i f y i n g the concept "response to l i t e r a t u r e " 6 C. Pedagogical value of examining conceptions . . 6 IV. Problem formulation 7 A. Foundation conceptions 7 B. Research conceptions . 8 C. Suggestion of conceptual s h i f t s 9 V. Statement of the problem 10 A. Questions 10 VI. Methodology 11 A. Procedure 12 VII. Overview of d i s s e r t a t i o n chapters 16 I. Introduction "Response to l i t e r a t u r e " i s a general pedagogical notion or concept r e f e r r i n g to a reaction (usually expressed v e r b a l l y or i n writing) to a published work, often a short story, novel, poem or play. I t i s the argument of t h i s d i s s e r t a t i o n that, although researchers e f f e c t i v e l y explore the myriad issues involved i n response to l i t e r a t u r e , an examination of the ways in which underlying t h e o r e t i c a l perspectives have framed t h e i r research has been missing. The purpose of t h i s analysis i s to explore these underlying t h e o r e t i c a l perspectives. This w i l l be done through an examination of conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e i n 2 research exploring the responses of adults and college students. I I . Significance The pedagogical si g n i f i c a n c e of t h i s d i s s e r t a t i o n w i l l be explained on three l e v e l s : 1) general s i g n i f i c a n c e of response to l i t e r a t u r e ; 2) the sig n i f i c a n c e of research on the responses of adult readers; and 3) the si g n i f i c a n c e of an examination of research conceptions of the terms, " l i t e r a t u r e " and "response to l i t e r a t u r e " . A. Significance of response to l i t e r a t u r e Response to l i t e r a t u r e i s considered of pedagogical value for three reasons. F i r s t , i t i s of u t i l i t a r i a n value. Responding to l i t e r a t u r e i s an important means of developing, nurturing and insuring l i t e r a c y (Bleich, 1985). The importance of i t s value as a means to l i t e r a c y has been acknowledged from e a r l i e s t ( A l t i c k , 1957) to most recent times (Brody, DeMilo, Purves, 1989). Purves (1971) observes that, "as a behavior to be culti v a t e d , i t i s considered by many curriculum writers the most important of a l l " (p. 708). Response to l i t e r a t u r e i s thus of fundamental importance. Second, as Langer (1989) suggests, "the process of understanding l i t e r a t u r e i s a natural and necessary part of the well-developed i n t e l l e c t " (p. 1). Response to l i t e r a t u r e 3 provides a means to s e l f - a c t u a l i z a t i o n and personal growth (Rosenblatt, 1938; Dixon, 1975). Third, response to l i t e r a t u r e i s of pedagogical importance i n a s o c i a l and c u l t u r a l sense. Rosenblatt (1938) suggests that: "the study of l i t e r a t u r e can have a very r e a l , and even cen t r a l , r e l a t i o n to the points of growth i n the s o c i a l and c u l t u r a l l i f e of a democracy" (p. v). Suggesting a larger context, Purves (in press) states: l i t e r a t u r e learning i n most s o c i e t i e s i n the world involves the acculturation of the i n d i v i d u a l to the s o c i a l norms of readership as established by the society. (P- 22) Thus concern with response to l i t e r a t u r e i s pedagogically s i g n i f i c a n t because i t can foster l i t e r a c y , personal growth, s o c i a l i z a t i o n and knowledge of c u l t u r a l heritage. B. Significance of research on the responses of adults and college students Research on response to l i t e r a t u r e i s generally recognized as important. Klemenz-Belgardt (1981) c i t e s the "widely acknowledged assumption" that: the more the teacher of school and college English knows about what student readers do, the easier i t w i l l be for him to achieve with them t r a d i t i o n a l objectives of l i t e r a r y study, such as willingness to read l i t e r a t u r e or insightfulness i n reading, (p. 358) Further, Hansson (1985) observes: considering the time and e f f o r t s that are spent i n teaching how to interpret and appreciate l i t e r a t u r e , we 4 know shockingly l i t t l e of what constitutes response to l i t e r a t u r e , (p. 226) The subjects studied i n research on response to l i t e r a t u r e range from children to adults. This d i s s e r t a t i o n explores only that research done with adult readers. The a r b i t r a r y delineation w i l l be people who are eighteen years of age or older, both within and outside of school. Thus the c r i t e r i a i s those studies which describe the subjects as either eighteen years of age or older as well as those which e x p l i c i t l y i d e n t i f y grade twelve students. The major reason for se l e c t i n g research with adults and college students derives from the b e l i e f that there are developmental constraints on l i t e r a r y response (Applebee, 1978; Svensson, 1985; H i l l o c k s and Ludlow, 1984). In addition, research with t h i s group of subjects reveals the r e s u l t of public education systems (Purves, Harnisch, Quirk and Bauer, 1980). Thus, from a developmental, pedagogical and c u l t u r a l point of view, adult and college readers are a point of reference for studies with children and high school students. C. Significance of an examination of research conceptions A study of key constructs i s important i n any f i e l d . Rosenblatt (1989) states that: the emphasis on making our underlying assumptions e x p l i c i t provides the basis not only for agreement but also for understanding the t a c i t sources of disagreement, (p. 16) 5 I t i s useful for the educator to c l a r i f y the meaning of fundamental concepts such as l i t e r a t u r e and response to l i t e r a t u r e i n order to f a c i l i t a t e e f f e c t i v e discussion of these ideas. Thus the si g n i f i c a n c e of t h i s d i s s e r t a t i o n ranges from general to s p e c i f i c pedagogical importance: from the general pedagogical importance of response to l i t e r a t u r e , through the s i g n i f i c a n c e of research with adult readers, to the s i g n i f i c a n c e of an exploration of fundamental conceptions of the research. I I I . Theoretical framework The t h e o r e t i c a l framework of t h i s d i s s e r t a t i o n concerns: 1) the nature of perception as i t re l a t e s to terminology i n a f i e l d ; 2) the method of c l a r i f y i n g the phrase, response to l i t e r a t u r e ; and f i n a l l y , 3) the educational s i g n i f i c a n c e of examining researchers 1 conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e i n l i g h t of t h e o r e t i c a l perspectives. A. Nature of perception Terminology, Kenneth Burke (19 66) points out: " i s not j u s t a r e f l e c t i o n of r e a l i t y but a way of seeing, a way of making d i s t i n c t i o n s that would be made d i f f e r e n t l y i f a d i f f e r e n t terminology were employed" (p. 46). As well: even i f any given terminology i s a r e f l e c t i o n of r e a l i t y , by i t s very nature as a terminology i t must be a 6 selection of r e a l i t y ; and to t h i s extent i t must function also as a deflection of r e a l i t y , (p. 45) Much that we take to be true about r e a l i t y i s merely the "spinning out of p o s s i b i l i t i e s " i m p l i c i t i n our conceptions of terms. Thus conceptions w i l l be considered as a source of a "feed-forward process" (Ford, 1987, p. 288). It i s an assumption of t h i s d i s s e r t a t i o n that i n i t i a l underlying research conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e help shape the r e s u l t s of the research. B. Method of c l a r i f y i n g the concept "response to l i t e r a t u r e " I t i s a second assumption of t h i s d i s s e r t a t i o n that the concept "response to l i t e r a t u r e " i s c l a r i f i e d not only by juxtaposing i t s terms, "response" and " l i t e r a t u r e " with c e r t a i n a r b i t r a r y constant d e f i n i t i o n s , but also by observing the h i s t o r i c a l context of the research. C. Pedagogical value of examining conceptions The t h i r d assumption of the thesis i s that there i s pedagogical value i n examining research conceptions i n l i g h t of both dictionary d e f i n i t i o n s as well as changing s o c i e t a l conditions and pedagogical values. By means of such an examination, constant and changing research p r i o r i t i e s , as well as possible causes for change, become clearer. Thus three assumptions constitute the t h e o r e t i c a l framework of the proposed d i s s e r t a t i o n : 1) terminology shapes 7 perception; 2) research conceptions of "response to l i t e r a t u r e " can be made clea r by an analysis which compares research conceptions with contemporary dictionary meanings as well as general s o c i e t a l and pedagogical conditions; and 3) the r e s u l t i n g comparison w i l l be of use to the educator. IV. Problem formulation The coupling of the words, "response" and " l i t e r a t u r e " , has a long history i n the t i t l e s of research studies (Sussams, 1933; Patrick, 1939; Meckel, 1946; McKillop, 1951; Buehler, 1952; Matson, 1953; Boyd and Mandler, 1955; Squire, 1956; Scribner, 1960; Squire, 1964; Stout, 1964; Monson, 1966; Kaiser, 1967; Curtis, 1968; Holland, 1968; Livingston, 19 68; Purves with Rippere, 19 68; Skelton, 1968; Cooper, 1969). The meaning of the phrase "response to l i t e r a t u r e " seems to have changed or evolved through the century. Even though today "response to l i t e r a t u r e " i s considered to be a phrase which excludes such aspects as ph y s i o l o g i c a l reaction and l i t e r a l comprehension of text (Beach and Hynds, 1989; Cooper, 1971), t h i s has not always been the case. A. Foundation conceptions The term "response", according to the Oxford English Dictionary (1989), encompasses phys i o l o g i c a l , psychological, 8 i n t e l l e c t u a l , e c c l e s i a s t i c a l , and recreational dimensions of an answer to some stimulus. The term " l i t e r a t u r e " i s equally amorphous. According to Webster's Dictionary (1984), the word " l i t e r a t u r e " has three p r i n c i p a l meanings: 1) everything i n p r i n t ; 2) great books of whatever subject; and 3) imaginative writing. Thus the meanings of these terms appear almost too vague to be useful i n discussion or research without greater s p e c i f i c a t i o n . B. Research conceptions The sp e c i a l d i f f i c u l t i e s of empirical research i n an area as "subjective, ineffable and r e l a t i v e as a reader reading a book" (Beach, 1979, p. 134) seem almost insurmountable. Many researchers (Cooper, 1985; Petrosky, 1985; Holland, 1985; Klemenz-Belgarde, 1981; Rosenblatt, 1985a) have concluded from t h e i r work that "response to l i t e r a t u r e " as a concept seems to be as large as human understanding i t s e l f : "understanding the process of reading or i n t e r p r e t i n g i s , i n the f i n a l analysis, understanding understanding" (Chabot, 1985, p. 24). There i s a vast range i n the types of research questions. These range from questions concerned with l i t e r a l comprehension (Hillocks and Ludlow, 1984) to those concerned with psychoanalytic exploration (Holland, 1975a) to those d e t a i l i n g the formulation of l i t e r a r y analyses (Kintgen, 1986). 9 Correspondingly, research conceptions of l i t e r a t u r e are equally diverse, ranging from pure sounds and rhythm of poetry (Givler, 1915) through single words (Downey, 1928), exposition (Black, 1954), researcher-devised s t o r i e s (Wolfenstein, 1946) and newspaper a r t i c l e s (Gray, 1947) to novels (Wilson, 1966), drama (DeVries, 1973), published short s t o r i e s (Dollerup, 1971), f i l m (Weber, 1973) and poetry (Svensson, 1985). This enormous variety i s also suggested in the myriad r e s u l t s , about which Cooper (1976) cautions that "there i s no need to despair because so many studies t e l l us so l i t t l e with absolute certainty" (p. 88). C. Suggestion of conceptual s h i f t s Purves (1985), i n his discussion of aspects of response to l i t e r a t u r e , proposes that early research was based on I.A. Richards' (1929) P r a c t i c a l C r i t i c i s m which, while not e x p l i c i t l y t h e o r e t i c a l , nevertheless tended to follow from the premise of hermeneutics that the l i t e r a r y text contained a v e r i f i a b l e essence, (p. 54) Next, Purves points out, following the influence of Wellek and Warren, came the Freudians and the ensuing s h i f t i n attention to the reader. These observations suggest that a ca r e f u l examination of research should reveal s h i f t s i n predominant conceptions from the text to the reader. In addition, Froese (1990a) has suggested a recent move towards a fundamental paradigm s h i f t i n the concept of l i t e r a c y , which corresponds with a general movement towards 10 h o l i s m i n a r e a s a s d i v e r s e a s m e d i c i n e and b u s i n e s s . T h i s d i s s e r t a t i o n s u g g e s t s t h a t t h e s h i f t t o w a r d s t h e i n c r e a s i n g p r i o r i t y p l a c e d on l i t e r a c y h a s a l r e a d y e x t e n d e d t o t h e a r e a o f r e s e a r c h on r e s p o n s e t o l i t e r a t u r e . V. S t a t e m e n t o f t h e p r o b l e m The s u g g e s t i o n o f a g e n e r a l s h i f t i n e m p h a s i s f r o m t h e t e x t t o w a r d s t h e r e a d e r i n r e s e a r c h on r e s p o n s e t o l i t e r a t u r e h a s n o t b e e n f u l l y documented. I t s u n d e r l y i n g a s s u m p t i o n , t h a t t h e r e a r e h i s t o r i c a l l y p r e d o m i n a n t r e s e a r c h c o n c e p t i o n s , a s w e l l a s p o s s i b l e r e a s o n s f o r t h e s e s h i f t s a l s o h a s n o t b e e n d e t a i l e d . F i n a l l y , s p e c u l a t i o n o f a g e n e r a l movement t o w a r d h o l i s m a l s o h a s been unexamined i n t h e a r e a o f r e s p o n s e t o l i t e r a t u r e . A. Q u e s t i o n s 1. A r e t h e r e s h i f t s i n r e s e a r c h c o n c e p t i o n s o f r e s p o n s e t o l i t e r a t u r e ? The f o l l o w i n g s u b - q u e s t i o n s w i l l be a d d r e s s e d : a. What a r e r e s e a r c h c o n c e p t i o n s o f r e s p o n s e t o l i t e r a t u r e ? i . G e n e r a l d i c t i o n a r y m e a n i n g s w i l l p r o v i d e a f o u n d a t i o n f r o m w h i c h t o d i s c u s s t h e o r e t i c a l i d e a s a b o u t r e s p o n s e t o l i t e r a t u r e . The f o l l o w i n g s u b - q u e s t i o n s w i l l be a d d r e s s e d : a. What a r e d i c t i o n a r y o r f o u n d a t i o n c o n c e p t i o n s o f " l i t e r a t u r e " ? b. What are dictionary or foundation conceptions of "response" as i t rel a t e s to " l i t e r a t u r e " ? b. Are some research conceptions more predominant than others i n ce r t a i n periods? c. Does a cursory overview of s o c i e t a l and pedagogical conditions suggest reasons for these predominant conceptions? 2 . What are some d i f f e r e n t ways of inte r p r e t i n g possible s h i f t s i n research conceptions? This w i l l be addressed by means of the following sub-questions: a. What are the strengths, l i m i t a t i o n s and pedagogical implications of various metaphors or ways of interpreting general s h i f t s i n research conceptions? b. On the basis of the above answers, what speculations can be made of future research directions? VI. Methodology Methodology concerns the s p e c i f i c approach, either philosophic or s c i e n t i f i c . The choice between these centres on the p o s i t i v i s t notion that there i s an objective truth which can be discovered and the r e l a t i v i s t p o s i t i o n which argues that truth i s made, not found. This d i s s e r t a t i o n attempts to be both p o s i t i v i s t , i n the r e t r i e v a l and analysis of sources, and r e l a t i v i s t , i n the synthesis of i t s information. A. Procedure 1. The f i r s t step i s to delineate benchmark conceptions of the terms " l i t e r a t u r e " and "response to l i t e r a t u r e " . Standard dictionary d e f i n i t i o n s w i l l be used for two reasons. F i r s t , when there i s dispute over the meaning of a word, the dictionary i s usually considered the d e f i n i t i v e authority. Second, the meanings provided i n the dictionary can be considered a foundation from which to approach both t h e o r e t i c a l and research meanings of the concepts. 2. The second step i s to determine research conceptions of the responses of adult and college students to l i t e r a t u r e . This w i l l be accomplished i n four intermediate steps. a. The f i r s t task i s to i d e n t i f y those studies which constitute the research on adult and college readers* responses to l i t e r a t u r e . These are derived from published, and thus generally sanctioned bibliographies of research' on response to l i t e r a t u r e . The Purves and Beach (1972) bibliography i s the only one to extend the span of research covered more than twenty years. The two main bibliographies used i n t h i s d i s s e r t a t i o n are as follows: Purves, Alan and Beach, Richard. (1972). Literature and the reader: research i n response to l i t e r a t u r e , reading int e r e s t s and the teaching of l i t e r a t u r e . National Council of Teachers of English. Beach, Richard and Hynds, Susan. (1989). Research on the learning and teaching of response to l i t e r a t u r e . Center 13 for the teaching and learning of l i t e r a t u r e . Albany: SUNY1. These were supplemented by other bibliographies: Cooper, Charles. (1976). Empirical studies of response to l i t e r a t u r e : review and suggestions. Journal of aesthetic education, 10, 77-93. Applebee, Arthur. (1978) . ERIC/RCS Report: the elements of response to a l i t e r a r y work: what we have learned. Research i n the Teaching of English, 11, 255-71. Klemenz-Belgardt, Edith. (1981). American research on response to l i t e r a t u r e : the empirical studies. Poetics, 10, 357- 80. Galda, Lee. (1983). Research i n response to l i t e r a t u r e . Journal of research and development i n education. 16, 1- 7. In addition to these major c r i t i c a l bibliographies, which e x p l i c i t l y address the topic of research on response to l i t e r a t u r e , a supplemental l i s t of studies was derived from the following sources: Cooper, Charles. (1971). Measuring appreciation of l i t e r a t u r e : a review of attempts. Research i n the Teaching of English. 5, 5-23. Petrosky, A.R. (1977). Response to l i t e r a t u r e : research roundup. English Journal 66, 86 -8, 96-9. Galda, L. (1982). Assessment: Response to l i t e r a t u r e . In A. Berger and A. H. Robinson. Eds. Secondary School Reading. Urbana, 111.: National Council of Teachers of English. Beach, R. and Appleman, D. (1983). Reading strategies for expository and l i t e r a r y text types. In A. Purves and 0. N i l e s . Ed. Becoming readers i n a complex society. Eighty- This w i l l be supplemented with additional studies from Richard Beach's (1988) paper, "New di r e c t i o n s i n research on response to l i t e r a t u r e " , which was delivered at the NCTE Conference i n St. Louis, Missouri. t h i r d Yearbook of the National Society for the Study of Education. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Cooper, Charles. Ed. (1985) . Researching response to l i t e r a t u r e and the teaching of l i t e r a t u r e . Norwood, N.J.: Ablex. b. The second step was to r e t r i e v e those studies from 2 the above bibliographies whose t i t l e s s p e c i f i e d high school , college, and adult readers, as well as those studies which did not s p e c i f i c a l l y exclude these groups. Examples of general t i t l e s included i n t h i s step are: 1) "Enhancing the black s e l f concept through l i t e r a t u r e " (Arnez, 1972), which explored the responses of elementary students; and 2) "Group t a l k and l i t e r a r y response" (Barnes, 1971), which explored the responses of grade eleven students. Both of these studies had to be eliminated because they did not include adult or college readers. Theoretical a r t i c l e s concerning research as well as reviews of research on response to l i t e r a t u r e , as l i s t e d i n these bibliographies, were included. A r t i c l e s which referred to high school students i n a general sense were excluded. A reading of each of these 248 studies i d e n t i f i e d those studies which used grade twelve students, college students, or adult readers outside of academia, r e s u l t i n g i n 2 a l i s t of 214 relevant studies (see Appendix Two). 2 The reason for including grade twelve students was the a r b i t r a r y cutoff point of eighteen years of age as d e f i n i t i o n of adult reader. 3 In the case of one study (Fowler and McCormick, 1986), where the age group of the subjects was not s p e c i f i e d either i n the t i t l e or i n the report of research i t s e l f , that study was included because i t contained works of l i t e r a t u r e which would be considered 15 c. The t h i r d step was to read, chronologically, each of the reports of research with a view to determining the primary conceptions of both " l i t e r a t u r e " and "response to l i t e r a t u r e " . For the conception of " l i t e r a t u r e " , note was taken of the genre of l i t e r a t u r e , i t s author and t i t l e , as well as the c r i t e r i a for i t s sele c t i o n . For the conception of response, note was taken of the t i t l e of the research a r t i c l e , the research purpose, and the s p e c i f i c response task. A h o l i s t i c judgment was made of whether the study tended more towards the text, the reader, or aspects of the response i t s e l f . I t i s important to point out that re s u l t s were not considered a component of the conception of the terms unless these r e s u l t s contradicted the i n i t i a l conception and thus needed explanation i n terms of the o r i g i n a l conception 4. d. The fourth step was to l i s t and then discuss the studies by decade, for sake of convenience. This discussion was preceded by an overview of s o c i e t a l and pedagogical conditions. 3. The f i n a l section of the d i s s e r t a t i o n explores the changing emphases i n research conceptions of "response to l i t e r a t u r e " . Different ways of seeing the s h i f t s were derived from metaphors suggested i n Morgan's (1989) Images of appropriate for adult readers. 4 I.A. Richards (1929) i s the most notable example. 16 organization. The strengths, l i m i t a t i o n s and pedagogical implications of the metaphors relevant to research conceptions of "response to l i t e r a t u r e " were delineated. F i n a l l y , speculation was offered on the move towards holism and future d i r e c t i o n s . VII. Overview of d i s s e r t a t i o n chapters The following i s an overview of the eight chapters in the d i s s e r t a t i o n . The f i r s t chapter, the introduction, s p e c i f i e s the si g n i f i c a n c e of the d i s s e r t a t i o n , the t h e o r e t i c a l framework, problem formulation (statement of the problem, questions to be answered; methodology and procedure), and an overview of the d i s s e r t a t i o n i t s e l f . Chapter Two presents conventional conceptions of " l i t e r a t u r e " , beginning with a summary of dictionary meanings, followed by a discussion of the importance, c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s and modes of l i t e r a t u r e i n both i t s nonhonorific sense as physical a r t i f a c t and i t s h o n o r i f i c sense as aesthetic a r t i f a c t . Conceptions of "response" as i t re l a t e s to l i t e r a t u r e are taken up i n Chapter Three. As i n Chapter Two, t h i s chapter begins with a summary of the dictionary meanings of "response", followed by a discussion of three conventional response orientations. These es s e n t i a l preliminaries (Chapters Two and Three) provide the constant l i g h t or 17 framework from which to examine the changing research conceptions. Chapter Four considers the early research phase, from i t s beginnings i n 1912 to mid-century, characterized by a growing d i v e r s i t y of conceptions concerning both l i t e r a t u r e and response to l i t e r a t u r e . The research conceptions are presented i n l i g h t of both the conventional conceptions developed i n Chapters Two and Three as well as changing s o c i e t a l and pedagogical conditions. Chapter Five documents the t r a n s i t i o n a l research phase, from the f i f t i e s through the s i x t i e s . This period i l l u s t r a t e s a t r a n s i t i o n stage i n the narrowing of conceptions from the peak i n d i v e r s i t y evident i n research of the f o r t i e s . Chapter Six explores the new d i r e c t i o n since the early seventies, i n which research conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e most f u l l y exemplify a pedagogical awareness of the transactional or dynamic nature of the reading event, along with an increasing concern for general l i t e r a c y s k i l l s . Chapter Seven presents a summary of the d i s s e r t a t i o n chapters as well as a conceptual summary which compares research conceptions with: 1) foundation conceptions; 2) changing s o c i e t a l conditions; 3) changing images of the college student; and 4) changes i n the college English classroom. 18 Chapter Eight provides a conceptual synthesis of ideas presented i n the previous chapters by looking at the s h i f t s i n research conceptions through various metaphors: mechanistic, c u l t u r a l - p o l i t i c a l , and organic. I t also includes speculation on the future. Three appendices are included at the end of the d i s s e r t a t i o n . Appendix One provides an overview of the general aims, scope and conclusions of the major c r i t i c a l bibliographies used i n the d i s s e r t a t i o n . Appendix Two provides a l i s t of those studies which were unavailable, either through the University of B r i t i s h Columbia Library or i t s I n t e r - l i b r a r y Loan Department. Appendix Three provides summary tables of research c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s . 19 CHAPTER TWO FOUNDATION CONCEPTIONS OF LITERATURE I. Introduction 19 II . Overview 19 I I I . "Literature": dictionary meaning A. H i s t o r i c a l . 2 0 B. Contemporary 22 IV. " L i t e r a t u r e " as a l l printed matter A. Importance 24 B. C h a r a c t e r i s t i c s . * 25 V. " L i t e r a t u r e " as aesthetic language 2 6 A. Importance . . . . 2 6 B. Ch a r a c t e r i s t i c s 28 VI. Summary 3 6 VII. Conclusion: possible research choices . . . . 37 I. Introduction This chapter begins the foundation from which research conceptions w i l l be examined. I t presents a t h e o r e t i c a l discussion of dictionary meanings of the word " l i t e r a t u r e " . The following chapter, Chapter Three, completes the foundation i n i t s exploration of meanings of the phrase, response to l i t e r a t u r e . Thus Chapters Two and Three approach the s i t u a t i o n of the l i t e r a r y transaction from opposing perspectives: the f i r s t has l i t e r a t u r e and the second, response, as t h e i r respective centres of gravity. I I . Overview The discussion of the concept " l i t e r a t u r e " begins with a b r i e f etymology of the word, followed by a look at 20 contemporary dictionary meanings. This i s succeeded by an exploration of l i t e r a t u r e considered f i r s t as physical and then as aesthetic a r t i f a c t ; that i s , as printed matter and as work of a r t . For both conceptions, the importance and general c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s w i l l be discussed. The chapter closes with a summary and conclusions. I I I . "Literature": dictionary meaning A. H i s t o r i c a l Rene Wellek provides a f u l l d e s cription of the changing meanings of the term, l i t e r a t u r e , i n Wiener's (197 3) Dictionary of the hi s t o r y of ideas. He points out that the word i t s e l f derives from the Latin l i t t e r a t u r a which, i n turn comes from the root l i t t e r a , l e t t e r . According to Q u i n t i l i a n (Institutiones, l i b 2., cap. 1), Wellek points out, i t i s a t r a n s l a t i o n of the Greek grammatike, which meant "a knowledge of w r i t i n g and reading". Generally, throughout h i s t o r y the term was used to r e f e r indiscriminately to a l l kinds of writings including those of an erudite nature, history, philosophy, theology, etc.: "only very slowly was the term narrowed down to what we today c a l l 'imaginative l i t e r a t u r e ' and imaginative, f i c t i v e prose". The view that " l i t e r a t u r e " distinguished imaginative from s c i e n t i f i c writing was the r e s u l t of a central problem posed by Baumgarten i n h i s 1735 Reflections on Poetry. In t h i s work, Baumgarten set about to supplement the Cartesian 21 view of ideas as r e s t r i c t e d to conceptual rather than i n t u i t e d knowledge. He proposed the importance of the sensory and perceptual cognition of the kind found i n poetry and the other a r t s . Drawing upon the Greek word for perception, aisthesis, Baumgarten coined the word aesthetics for the science of perceptual cognition. The basic conclusion of his analysis i s that the aesthetic value of a poem i s proportional to the i n t u i t e d vividness of the fused q u a l i t y of the experience that i t evokes. Wellek points out that Kant's l a t e r (1790) Critique of Judgment also distinguished the good, the true, and the useful, from the b e a u t i f u l . Slowly through the twentieth century, with the increasing d i s t i n c t i o n s concerning s c i e n t i f i c , ordinary and l i t e r a r y language, the purely d i d a c t i c and mimetic conception of l i t e r a t u r e receded, and f i c t i o n increasingly became a quality of l i t e r a t u r e . To summarize b r i e f l y , the term " l i t e r a t u r e " s i g n i f i e d f i r s t , i n c l a s s i c a l times, both the knowledge of l e t t e r s and writings as well as the actual body of writings themselves. During the eighteenth century, the term retained these senses, while also adding that of "a knowledge of be l l e s l e t t r e s " as distinguished from erudition, thus suggesting the exclusi v e l y aesthetic sense of l i t e r a t u r e and foreshadowing i t s use i n pedagogical c i r c l e s as being r e s t r i c t e d to purely imaginative as distinguished from s c i e n t i f i c writing. Several related terms, s p e c i f i c a l l y : "world l i t e r a t u r e " (used f i r s t by Goethe i n 1827 to r e f e r to writings of a l l c u l t u r e s ) ; "general l i t e r a t u r e " (used f i r s t by James Montgomery i n 1833 to r e f e r to p r i n c i p l e s of c r i t i c i s m ) ; and "comparative l i t e r a t u r e " (used f i r s t by Hutchison Posnett i n 1886) arose i n the nineteenth century. A more recent related term, "oral l i t e r a t u r e " , i s described by Wellek as a "contradictio i n adjecto, i n view of the derivation of l i t e r a t u r e from l i t e r a " . However, he points out that i t i s "a needed term since the o r a l t r a d i t i o n i s a necessary component of any meaningful hi s t o r y of the verbal forms of a r t " (p. 86). Wellek does not mention the hi s t o r y of the meaning as r e f e r r i n g to a l l those works printed on a p a r t i c u l a r subject, as i n the phrase, "reviewing the l i t e r a t u r e " . B. Contemporary The discussion of contemporary meanings w i l l begin with dictionary d e f i n i t i o n s . These d e f i n i t i o n s not only provide a foundation from which to view uses of the term but they also serve the function of providing "some agreement among users of the language about the generally accepted meanings of words" (Kister, 1977). The Oxford English Dictionary (1989) defines " l i t e r a t u r e " as: 1) acquaintance with ' l e t t e r s ' or books; p o l i t e or humane learning; l i t e r a r y culture. Now rare and obsolescent. 2) 23 l i t e r a r y work or production; the a c t i v i t y or profession of a man of l e t t e r s ; the realm of l e t t e r s . 3) a. l i t e r a r y production as a whole; the body of writings produced i n a p a r t i c u l a r country or period, or i n the world i n general. Now also i n a more r e s t r i c t e d sense, applied to writing which has claim to consideration on the ground of beauty of form or emotional e f f e c t , b. the body of books and writings that t r e a t of a p a r t i c u l a r subject, c. c o l l o g . printed matter of any kind. The Webster's New World Dictionary of American English (1988) includes the meaning of l i t e r a t u r e as "printed matter of any kind, e s p e c i a l l y those (writings) of an imaginative or c r i t i c a l character without regard to t h e i r excellence" (emphasis mine). The World Book Dictionary (1987) and The Random House Dictionary of the English Language (1987) also include "writings of a period, language or culture" and "printed matter of any kind" respectively. However, they both omit reference to imaginative works, emphasizing instead the "beauty or excellence of s t y l e or thought". The World Book Dictionary i s unique i n c i t i n g as a synonym for l i t e r a t u r e the term " b e l l e s - l e t t r e s " , which Wellek had observed was an archaic association of " l i t e r a t u r e " . To summarize, the meaning with the greatest consensus among major general d i c t i o n a r i e s i s "printed matter of any kind". "Excellence i n writing" i s a second important meaning. The meaning with the least consensus i n general d i c t i o n a r i e s , although i t i s the most popular i n pedagogical and research c i r c l e s , i s the reference to aesthetic, imaginative writing. The discussion now turns to a more 24 de t a i l e d consideration of these three meanings of the word " l i t e r a t u r e " . IV. "Literature" as a l l printed matter A. Importance P r i n t seems to pervade modern-day culture. The p r i n t i n g industry has the largest number of production plants of any industry i n the world (Academic American Encyclopedia, 1983). The 1985 UNESCO S t a t i s t i c a l Yearbook put world book production i n 1983 at 772,000 t i t l e s , of which some 80 per cent was produced i n the developed countries. The Library and book trade almanac: 1989-90 puts 1987 publishing industry sales at 11.4 b i l l i o n i n the United States. I t also adds that 1988 book t i t l e s reached a record o v e r a l l t o t a l of 56,027 for a single year. Large (1984) estimates that the t o t a l of a l l printed knowledge today doubles every eight years. June Callwood (1990) concludes: i n t h i s h a l f of the century North America has become a world of forms and documents and inst r u c t i o n s , written warnings, posted rules, l e a f l e t s , and v i t a l information c i r c u l a t e d i n brochures, (p. 36) P r i n t has i t s very roots i n economic necessity. The e a r l i e s t forms of written language, that of the Sumerians, arose out of the increasing complexity of t h e i r business dealings. Finnegan (1988) points out that both the Reformation, which r e l i e d on universal access to the Bible, and the I n d u s t r i a l Revolution, which underlies modern 25 i n d u s t r i a l society, were highly dependent on p r i n t i n g and ensuing widespread l i t e r a c y : much that we think of as c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of the modern world - economic, s o c i a l , r e l i g i o u s , p o l i t i c a l - i s b u i l t on the foundation provided by p r i n t as a medium of communication, (p. 30) B. C h a r a c t e r i s t i c s Literature, at i t s most fundamental, i s merely printed words. W. H. Gass (1970) suggests that "a word i s a concept made f l e s h . . . the eternal presented as noise" (p. 29). De Beaugrande (1988a) proposes that discourse i s neither a mere r e f l e c t i o n of the world nor a mere vehicle of personal imaginings . . . (it) allows us to discuss and organize our actual experiences, as well as to mediate among those we have not yet encountered, (pp 3-4) Thus l i t e r a t u r e , i n a fundamental sense, i s language i t s e l f . I t i s the means by which we make sense of the world. In addition, i n contemporary Western culture, an a b i l i t y to cope with l i t e r a t u r e as printed matter i s v i r t u a l l y e s s e n t i a l for physical s u r v i v a l . Without the a b i l i t y to read, i t i s d i f f i c u l t to earn a l i v i n g . In the areas of pedagogy and research, however, the meaning of l i t e r a t u r e i s usually r e s t r i c t e d to i t s sp e c i a l sense as aesthetic and imaginative writing. Two points of view w i l l be considered i n the following section. The f i r s t , perhaps more t r a d i t i o n a l , proposes that aesthetic language exi s t s as an inherent textual q u a l i t y . I t i s the author's s p e c i a l use of language. The second argument proposes that 26 aesthetic language i s a q u a l i t y created by the reader i n the transaction with the text. I t i s a way of reading. The f i r s t idea to be explored i s that aesthetic language ex i s t s as an inherent q u a l i t y of the text. V. "L i t e r a t u r e " as aesthetic language Frye (1957) describes the aesthetic roots of language i n words themselves, . . . what we think of as t y p i c a l l y the poetic creation, which i s an associative r h e t o r i c a l process, most of i t below the threshold of consciousness, a chaos of paronomasia, sound-links, ambiguous sense-links, and memory-links very l i k e that of the dream. Out of t h i s the d i s t i n c t i v e l y l y r i c a l union of sound and sense emerges, (p. 271-2) Urmson (1977), suggesting the s i m i l a r i t i e s between p r i n t and spoken language, proposes that l i t e r a r y s t y l e i t s e l f i s commonly c r i t i c i z e d i n terms of sounds: even i n the case of works which would not normally be read aloud i t i s a commonplace to speak of assonance, dissonance, sonority, rhythm . . . We c r i t i c i z e the writing i n terms of how i t would sound, i f i t were spoken, (pp. 339-40) Even though the roots of aesthetic language can be perceived to e x i s t i n mere words and bare sounds themselves, i t i s more usual to think of l i t e r a t u r e as some form of connected discourse, such as a poem, novel or essay. A. Importance Many would argue that r e f e r e n t i a l language, as f a r as i t can be considered an inherent textual qua l i t y , i s more 27 important than aesthetic language. Taxonomies of human goals generally do not include aesthetic needs (McDougall, 1933; Murray, 1938; Maslow, 1943, 1970 1; McClelland, Atkinson, Clark and Lowell, 1953; Vroom, 1964; Ford and Nichols, 1987). The suggestion i s that i t may be possible to survive comfortably without ever being aware of the beauty of language: we face the prospect that the use of anything but immediately functional or d i v e r s i o n a l texts (newspapers, magazines instructions and the like) may lose currency i n our society. (De Beaugrande, 1988a, p. 1) Like the study of Latin and Greek, a self-conscious awareness of the beauty of language seems to be relegated almost exclusively to the pedagogical domain. However, i t i s perhaps e s p e c i a l l y here where some argue that the notion of "aesthetics" has recently undergone serious assault. In his War against the i n t e l l e c t (1989), Peter Shaw argues that on contemporary un i v e r s i t y campuses, . . . ( l i t e r a r y works) are being subjected to a system of int e r p r e t a t i o n that i s extinguishing t h e i r s p i r i t quite as e f f e c t u a l l y as i f they were again l i t e r a l l y under assault by Vandals and Goths, (p. 167) However, others such as Falck (1990) i n s i s t on the continuing ontological necessity of an aesthetic language that "gives us our purest and most es s e n t i a l way of grasping r e a l i t y or t r u t h " (p. x i i ) . Maslow posits but does not include categories of aesthetic needs i n h i s hierarchy. 28 B. C h a r a c t e r i s t i c s Literature, considered i n i t s meaning as aesthetic language, ref e r s to the i n t r i n s i c beauty of written text. Theories of aesthetics are diverse. The simplest i s the hedonistic idea that beauty i s inherent i n that written language which merely gives pleasure. This idea i s derived from Santayana's aesthetics, described i n h i s (1896) The Sense of beauty, which proposes that aesthetic value i s "taken as i n t r i n s i c pleasure or the l i k i n g of a thing for i t s e l f , as against l i k i n g i t as a means to an end" (Wiener, 1973, p. 151). Thus, l i t e r a t u r e which does no more than please could be considered "aesthetic". Examples would be rock l y r i c s , cartoon dialogue, and clever advertising slogans. A d i f f e r e n t philosophy of aesthetic language i s derived from Kant. He stresses a "higher" type of pleasure: disi n t e r e s t e d , universal, necessary i n a uniquely s p e c i f i e d way, and one which gives the e f f e c t of being purposeful without a c t u a l l y s a t i s f y i n g a purpose (Wiener, p. 152). Other theories of aesthetics include Croce's emphasis on the i n t u i t i o n of q u a l i t y and William James1 aesthetics of fusion, which proposes that, l i k e the taste of lemonade, the aesthetic q u a l i t y l i e s i n the fusion of separate elements which, i n i s o l a t i o n , are commonplace. Although there i s now no s i n g l e dominant theory of general aesthetic value, the various conceptions have s i m i l a r features, each holding as dominant features that others would accept only as 29 subordinate. The most popular conception of the beautiful i n l i t e r a r y and pedagogical domains seems to be more c l o s e l y r e l a t e d to Kant than to Santayana. "Good l i t e r a t u r e " i s that text which requires e f f o r t : our perception of what i s aesthetic and what i s not . . . i s r a d i c a l l y molded by our values . . . the arousal boost we derive from a work judged to be art i s therefore larger and more rewarding than that from one judged to be k i t s c h . (Nell, 1988a, p. 8.) S i m i l a r l y , Davis (1973) observes, to perceive more r i c h l y . . . and think more vigorously . . . we must have recourse to the products of minds superior to our own . . . which must i n i t i a l l y bring more pain than pleasure . . . This pain i s one of the symptoms by which the c r i t i c recognizes great writing, (p. 21) The current idea of l i t e r a t u r e as aesthetic a r t i f a c t , rather than merely printed matter, has a long history. I t began with A r i s t o t l e ' s suggestion that poetry o f f e r s special insight because i t describes "a kind of thing that might be" rather than a "thing that has been". Ransom (1941), too, stresses the ontological dimension of aesthetic rather than ordinary language: Poetry intends to recover the denser and more refractory o r i g i n a l world which we know loosely through our perceptions and memories. By t h i s supposition i t i s a kind of knowledge which i s r a d i c a l l y or o n t o l o g i c a l l y d i s t i n c t , (p. 281) The concept of l i t e r a t u r e as aesthetic a r t i f a c t , distinguished from other printed matter, i s c l o s e l y related to the idea of l i t e r a t u r e as r e f e r r i n g more to the world of imagination rather than " r e a l i t y " . Pratt (1977) points out that t h i s d i s t i n c t i o n has i t s modern beginnings i n the early decades of the twentieth century with a growing awareness of d i s t i n c t i o n s among l i t e r a r y , s c i e n t i f i c and ordinary languages (pp. 128-9). She explains that i n the twenties and t h i r t i e s , the Russian Formalists, the New C r i t i c s (led by I.A. Richards), and the Prague School (led by Roman Jakobson), a l l emphasized the concept of " l i t e r a t u r e " as a superior use of language: No word i n the poem (I mean here every "and" or "the") i s i d e n t i c a l with the same-sounding word i n common use and conversation . . . the c o n s t e l l a t i o n i t occupies i n verse or a r t i s t i c prose, changes i t to the core of i t s nature, renders i t useless, unserviceable for mere everyday use, untouchable and permanent. (Rilke, 1922, p. 326, i n Pratt, 1977, emphasis mine) This s p e c i a l q u a l i t y of poetic as d i s t i n c t from ordinary language resulted i n a dichotomy of non-literary and l i t e r a r y language: " i t has either a communicative function . . . or a poetic function." (Cercle Linguistique de Prague, 1929, p. 14, Pratt's 1977 t r a n s l a t i o n , p. x v i i ) . N e l l (1988a) points out the ensuing implication of such a view: the ultimate t e s t of c r i t i c a l competence i s to be able to d i s t i n g u i s h r e l i a b l y between l i t e r a r y and non-literary works (or between art and fakes) on textual grounds alone, (p. 41, emphasis mine) Pratt c i t e s reasons for the i m p o s s i b i l i t y of t h i s feat by pointing out the s i m i l a r i t i e s between t r a d i t i o n a l l i t e r a r y conventions and o r a l language narratives of personal experience using Labov's (1972) research on o r a l narrative of personal experience. She i l l u s t r a t e s , with examples of s p e c i f i c l i t e r a r y works, that these two d i f f e r e n t uses of language, o r a l narrative and l i t e r a t u r e , are formally and f u n c t i o n a l l y very much a l i k e : a l l the problems of coherence, chronology, causality, foregrounding, p l a u s i b i l i t y , s e l e c t i o n of d e t a i l , tense, point of view, and emotional i n t e n s i t y e x i s t for the natural narrator just as they do for the novelist, and they are confronted and solved (with greater or lesser success) by speakers of the language every day. (pp. 66- 7) She concludes with the observation that "the formal s i m i l a r i t i e s between natural and l i t e r a r y narrative [must] derive from the f a c t that at some l e v e l of analysis, they are utterances of the same type" (p. 69). De Beaugrande (1988a) also points out that the idea that l i t e r a t u r e has d i s t i n c t i v e features that deviate from "ordinary language" e. . . . presupposes an o b j e c t i f i e d text with independently given features . . . no provision (in t h i s premise) i s made for . . . "found poems" or for using ostensibly l i t e r a r y features i n other types such as advertising and p o l i t i c a l oratory, (p. 7) The argument that l i t e r a t u r e i s i n t r i n s i c a l l y aesthetic i s , as has been mentioned, c l o s e l y r e l a t e d to the t h i r d major dictionary conception of l i t e r a t u r e as f i c t i o n a l rather than factual writing. Reichart (1981) states that when a reader assumes a text to be a l i t e r a r y work, t h i s includes the negative assumption that i t i s not to be construed as serving any of the normal, goal-directed functions of language . . . we assume that the statements i n a l i t e r a r y work have l o s t t h e i r assertive function, (p. 66) 32 In f i c t i o n a l writing, he proposes, the r e f e r e n t i a l value i s diminished. The connotative, rather than the e x p l i c i t meaning, i s the focus of attention for both reader and writer. Ryan (1980) s p e c i f i e s two weaknesses i n the d i s t i n c t i o n : 1) i f we view f i c t i o n as discourse concerning invented events, we w i l l be unable to account for the presence i n f i c t i o n a l works of statements describing accurately r e a l world states of a f f a i r s . 2) the above d e f i n i t i o n ( i . e . that "a f i c t i o n i s a statement that refers to a made up event that has been invented or feigned rather than having a c t u a l l y happened") f a i l s to make a d i s t i n c t i o n between f i c t i o n on the one hand and other types of utterances concerning alternate worlds such as reports of dreams, philosophical examples and counterfactuals. (p. 404) In addition, many would argue that the tr u t h factor i s equally important i n narrative and exposition. N e l l (1988a) observes: the most s t r i k i n g evidence that fact (exposition) grips us as strongly as f i c t i o n i s the self-evident but almost e n t i r e l y unremarked phenomenon that the way we lose ourselves i n a newspaper (especially when a big story runs: the assassination of a president or a great p o l l u t i o n threat) cannot be distinguished from the way we lose ourselves i n a novel, (p. 51) Examples of blurred categories come e a s i l y to mind. A f i r s t i s Truman Capote's (1962) no n f i c t i o n a l novel, In cold blood: a true account of a multiple murder and i t s consequences. A second i s Michael Herr's (1990) Walter Winchell: a novel, "a biography i n the form of a screenplay This suggestion i s supported by Langer's (1989) recent study with exposition and narrative. that c a l l s i t s e l f a novel (Rascoe, 1990, p. 12). A t h i r d example i s Dennis McFarland's (1990) Music Room which, "constructed l i k e a detective story . . . i s nevertheless an opposite of that genre" (Humphreys, 1990, p. 11). I t thus follows that "(w)e have no r e a l standards to d i s t i n g u i s h a verbal structure that i s l i t e r a r y from one that i s not" (Northrop Frye, 1957, p. 303). Further, i t would seem that "any text . . . can be read either way (that i s , e f f e r e n t l y , for information, or a e s t h e t i c a l l y , for pleasure)" (Rosenblatt, 1985, p. 269). Why then, does the b e l i e f p e r s i s t that a canon of l i t e r a r y works i s re a d i l y i d e n t i f i a b l e by i t s i n t r i n s i c excellence? This problem w i l l be approached f i r s t from a s o c i a l , then from an in d i v i d u a l perspective. As concerns the communal v a l o r i z a t i o n of " l i t e r a t u r e " , Richard Ohman (1971) observes that our readiness to discover and dwell on the i m p l i c i t meanings i n l i t e r a r y works - and to judge them important - i s a consequence of our knowing them to be l i t e r a r y works, rather than that which t e l l s us they are such. (p. 6) . Thus, as Pratt (1977) points out, the body of texts considered to be l i t e r a r y works have i n common the following issues: 1) they were composed with the idea of being published; 2) they are thus d e l i b e r a t i v e and polished; and f i n a l l y , 3) they have passed through "a process of se l e c t i o n c a r r i e d out by s p e c i a l i s t s " who screen out poorer works i n order to "ensure the d i s t r i b u t i o n and preservation of the more successful" (p. 118). The published work as physical 34 object "symbolizes t h i s s e l ection and r a t i f i c a t i o n procedure" (p. 118). Van Rees (1987) suggests that the judgment that a text i s of s u f f i c i e n t aesthetic q u a l i t y to be judged as " l i t e r a r y " i s a rrived at by consensus among those who have published in the highest-ranking journals. Once a growing number of analyses by these "agents of consecration" (p. 282) agree about the aesthetic value of a given l i t e r a r y work, Van Rees points out that: by continuously adding to e x i s t i n g comments, essayists and academics may subsequently appear to be r e f i n i n g previous interpretations and to be adducing more precise grounds i n support of the s p e c i f i c value they believe to be a t t r i b u t a b l e to the works that form part of t h i s canon, (p. 280) E x p l i c i t c r i t e r i a of l i t e r a r y merit are not e a s i l y measurable. For example, Fi e d l e r (1984) describes a l i t e r a r y work as at best a s k i l f u l and sophisticated arrangement of words, a pleasantly i n t r i c a t e web of s e n s i b i l i t y , which i s judged good or bad i n terms of how complex and various though f i n a l l y u n i f i e d , i n i t s abstract pattern, (p. 155) Beardsley (1970) of f e r s s i m i l a r c r i t e r i a : . . . a poem must bring together some d i f f e r e n t meanings and include elements of contrast or opposition or tension. I t must unify them so that i t s tension i s contained within a whole that possesses a notable degree of i n t e g r i t y and independence. And i t must take on, as a whole, a pervasive quality, or set of q u a l i t i e s , which I c a l l regional q u a l i t i e s : i t s melancholy, i t s wit, i t s vigour, i t s v i t a l i t y , etc. The more complexity i t i n f o l d s , the more thoroughly i t i s u n i f i e d , the more intense i t s q u a l i t i e s , the better i t i s as a poem. (p. 91) Van Rees (1987) argues that the c r i t e r i a for admittance into the prestigious int e r p r e t i v e community are numerous and stringent. However, Nell's (1988a) study (pp. 148-66) reveals the s u r p r i s i n g l y s i m i l a r judgments of l i t e r a r y merit and preference rankings among c r i t i c s , l i b r a r i a n s and average readers. These r e s u l t s suggests that perhaps "professional c r i t i c s are not the possessors of an arcane r i g h t . . . , (instead) t h e i r judgments of l i t e r a r y excellence are c l o s e l y emulated by lay readers" (p. 160). In addition, h i s study (supported by Foster, 1936 and Schmidt, 1980) suggests that for c r i t i c s , l i b r a r i a n s and average readers, not only are merit and d i f f i c u l t y c l o s e l y related, but these q u a l i t i e s correlate negatively with reading preference. That i s , i n support of Kant's aesthetic theory, the more d i f f i c u l t the l i t e r a r y work, the greater w i l l be the perception, among both c r i t i c s and lay readers, of i t s l i t e r a r y merit and the less readers w i l l v o l u n t a r i l y choose to read i t . The idea that " l i t e r a t u r e i s an i d e a l form of communication because i t has the most powerful examples of verbal s k i l l " (Duncan, 1953, p. 93), i s thus a tautology. As a community of readers, we revere that which has been considered s p e c i a l . However, the conception of l i t e r a t u r e as aesthetic a r t i f a c t i s also an i n d i v i d u a l as well as a public conception. What c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s i d e n t i f y l i t e r a t u r e as aesthetic i n a personal sense? Bogdan (1990a) points out that i n order to undergo the l i t e r a r y experience, the reader must f i r s t see the l i t e r a r y object, and i n order for that to happen, she or he must be able to d i s t i n g u i s h i t as i t s e l f , as something that i s not " l i f e " : l i t e r a r y structure, then becomes both the means of separating l i t e r a t u r e from l i f e and of conjoining l i t e r a t u r e to l i f e once that separateness has f i r s t been discerned through what we c a l l aesthetic distance, (p. 117) L i t e r a t u r e thus provides the cushioning of experience: "knowledge accrues from our perception of i t as o b j e c t i f i e d •out th e r e " 1 (Bogdan 1990a, p. 117). This cushioning from personal concerns i s perhaps what constitutes both the i n s p i r a t i o n a l and healing power of l i t e r a t u r e i n a personal rather than communal sense. VI. Summary The discussion of foundation conceptions of l i t e r a t u r e began with a summary of the etymology of " l i t e r a t u r e " . I t then moved to an exploration of contemporary dictionary meanings. There were three primary dictionary meanings: printed matter, the body of great writings of a culture, and f i c t i o n a l works. The c u l t u r a l importance of l i t e r a t u r e as p r i n t was discussed. Next, the argument was made for the idea of l i t e r a t u r e as an i n t r i n s i c a l l y - i d e n t i f i a b l e aesthetic a r t i f a c t . This argument was then contrasted with the idea of the aesthetics of l i t e r a t u r e being a way of reading, i n addition to, or even instead of, a way of writing. VII. Conclusion Underlying t h i s discussion was the idea of an objective or subjective r e a l i t y : the question of whether l i t e r a t u r e i s "found" or "made" by the reader (Fish, 1980, p 11). These problems are i m p l i c i t i n the researcher's s e l e c t i o n of the l i t e r a t u r e to be used with h i s subjects. If a researcher considers l i t e r a t u r e to be "found", he may tend to s e l e c t examples of l i t e r a t u r e which are conventionally revered, such as the works of major nineteenth century poets If the researcher considers l i t e r a t u r e to be "made", rather than found, he may select examples of l i t e r a t u r e which are less canonical. In any case, even i f he considers only dictionary meanings of the concept, the choices of the researcher are many. He can use any one of the following as " l i t e r a t u r e " : 1) single printed words, since they are the fundamental building blocks of l i t e r a t u r e i n a l l of i t s senses; 2) any "excellent" writing, regardless of genre; 3) any connected discourse, regardless of q u a l i t y or genre; or 4) f i c t i o n a l rather than f a c t u a l material. A f i n a l possible option goes beyond foundation or dictionary meanings. The researcher a l s has the choice of disregarding dictionary meanings and using other interpretations of the concept such as performance, o r a l s t o r i e s and f i l m . 33 CHAPTER T H R E E FOUNDATION CONCEPTIONS OF " R E S P O N S E TO L I T E R A T U R E " I . I n t r o d u c t i o n 38 I I . O v e r v i e w 39 I I I . " R e s p o n s e " : d i c t i o n a r y m e a n i n g s A . H i s t o r i c a l 39 B . C o n t e m p o r a r y . 4 0 I V I m p o r t a n c e o f l i t e r a c y 42 A . " R e s p o n s e t o l i t e r a t u r e " i n d a i l y l i f e . . . 44 V . P e d a g o g i c a l " r e s p o n s e t o l i t e r a t u r e " : m e c h a n i s t i c a n d new p a r a d i g m f o u n d a t i o n s . . . . 46 A . T e x t - o r i e n t a t i o n : a s s o c i a t e d c r i t i c a l s c h o o l . 4 9 1 . C o n c e p t o f t h e a u t h o r 51 2 . C o n c e p t o f l i t e r a t u r e 52 3 . C o n c e p t o f r e s p o n s e 53 B . R e a d e r - o r i e n t a t i o n : a s s o c i a t e d c r i t i c a l s c h o o l . 5 5 1 . C o n c e p t o f t h e a u t h o r 58 2 . C o n c e p t o f l i t e r a t u r e . 5 8 3 . C o n c e p t o f r e s p o n s e 59 C . R e s p o n s e - o r i e n t a t i o n : a s s o c i a t e d c r i t i c a l s c h o o l . 6 3 1 . C o n c e p t o f t h e a u t h o r 68 2 . C o n c e p t o f l i t e r a t u r e . 6 8 3 . C o n c e p t o f r e s p o n s e 69 V I I . Summary 72 V I I I . C o n c l u s i o n : P o s s i b l e r e s e a r c h c h o i c e s . . . . 73 I . I n t r o d u c t i o n T h i s c h a p t e r c o n s t i t u t e s t h e s e c o n d p e r s p e c t i v e f r o m w h i c h r e s e a r c h c o n c e p t i o n s o f r e s p o n s e t o l i t e r a t u r e w i l l b e e x a m i n e d . I t c e n t r e s o n t h e p e r c e p t i o n o f l i t e r a t u r e l e s s a s a n e x t e r n a l p h y s i c a l a r t i f a c t a n d m o r e a s a c o n c e p t i n t h e m i n d o f t h e r e a d e r , a l l o w i n g f o r t h e t r a n s i e n c e o f s u c h a d i s t i n c t i o n . I I . Overview Like the exploration of foundation conceptions of l i t e r a t u r e , the discussion of conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e begins with dictionary d e f i n i t i o n s of "response". This i s followed by an overview of the prevalent forms of response to l i t e r a t u r e i n d a i l y l i f e . The central emphasis of the chapter follows: a t h e o r e t i c a l description of the major conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e . Although there are numerous continua on which to examine the research, a central one seems to be the respective importance accorded the text, the reader and the response i t s e l f . These three components constitute d i f f e r e n t points of emphasis on the reader-text continuum: text- oriented, reader-oriented, and response-oriented. An example of each orientation or focus w i l l be i l l u s t r a t e d by arguments commonly associated with c r i t i c a l schools which emphasize the text, the reader or the transaction of response i t s e l f . The chapter closes with a summary and conclusions concerning possible research choices. I I I . "Response": dictionary meaning A. H i s t o r i c a l The Oxford English Dictionary (1989) states that the word "response" was used f i r s t i n the simple sense of "an answer; a reply" i n about 1300: "In a chambre f a s t i l o k e a l l e h i were ibroust. That h i ne scholde ascaie nost er h i respounse seele". I t was used for the f i r s t time e x p l i c i t l y as opposed to a stimulus by J. B. Watson (1919) i n his Psychology: "having now examined at some length into the general nature of both stimulus and response, we should be prepared to understand the object of a psychological experiment". In addition, response has e c c l e s i a s t i c a l , musical, psychological and even recreational overtones. The word's most constant sense i s an answer to some question or stimulus. B. Contemporary meaning The Oxford English Dictionary (1989) defines "response" i n the following ways: 1. a. an answer; a reply, b. an action or f e e l i n g which answers to some stimulus or influence; spec, i n psychol. (frequently opposed to stimulus); an observable reaction to some s p e c i f i c stimulus or s i t u a t i o n ; the fact of such reaction, c. the way i n which an apparatus responds to a stimulus or ranged stimulus, d. Bridge, a reply to a partner's opening (or subsequent) bid. 2. E c c l . a=responsory. b. a part of the l i t u r g y said or sung by the congregation i n reply to the p r i e s t . 3. an oracular answer. 4. Mus. 'In a fugue, the r e p e t i t i o n of the given subject by another part'. 5. pl=responsion. 6. a t t r i b . and comb.; as response function, rate; esp. in psychol., as response bias, movement, pattern, p r o b a b i l i t y , set; response-contingent adj.; response time. E l e c t r . , the time taken for a c i r c u i t or measuring device, when subjected tb a change i n input s i g n a l , to i t s change i n state by a sp e c i f i e d f r a c t i o n of i t s t o t a l response to that change. The Random House Dictionary of the English Language (1987) defines "response" as: 41 1. an answer or reply, as i n words or i n some action. 2 (Biol.) any behavior of a l i v i n g organism that r e s u l t s from an external or i n t e r n a l stimulus. 3.(Eccles.) a. a verse, sentence, phrase, or word said or sung by the choir or congregation i n reply to the o f f i c i a n t , b. responsory. 4. (Bridge.) a bid based on an evaluation of one's hand r e l a t i v e to the previous bid of one's partner. The World Book Dictionary (1987) defines i t as: 1. an answer by word or act; 2. the words said or sung by the congregation i n answer to the minister; 3. the reaction of body or mind to a stimulus. Thus, the phrase "response to l i t e r a t u r e " , based on the conventional dictionary d e f i n i t i o n of response, encompasses any and a l l aspects of what happens to a person when she or he reads l i t e r a t u r e . The discussion w i l l now turn to s p e c i f i c d e f i n i t i o n s of response to l i t e r a t u r e used by educators. Chabot (1985), i n Cooper's Researching response to l i t e r a t u r e and the teaching of l i t e r a t u r e , emphasizes the vast range of the concept of "response to l i t e r a t u r e " : i t i s necessary to ground understanding of the reading or i n t e r p r e t i v e process i n a conception of the ent i r e interpretive situation, that i s i n the f u l l interplay between reader and book, between any subject and i t s object, (p. 24) Cooper (1985), s i m i l a r l y , defines "response to l i t e r a t u r e " as the f u l l complexity of the reading process, from decoding to inference, as well as the p a r t i c u l a r demands of the uniquely aesthetic, g l o b a l l y contextualized reading which f i c t i o n a l l i t e r a t u r e requires, (p. xi) Purves (1971) defines the phrase as r e f e r r i n g to: "the perceptual, cognitive, a f f e c t i v e and psychomotor behaviours 42 and the reading and hearing of a work, as well as watching one" (p. 708). He continues: response begins the moment one f i r s t confronts the work and ends - well, i n some cases i t ends only when the in d i v i d u a l dies. I t includes reading, thinking, f e e l i n g , and acting i n some r e l a t i o n to the stimulus of the l i t e r a r y work . . . (p. 708) Acknowledging the d i f f i c u l t y of measuring neural and unconscious psychological processes involved i n the response of the reader, Purves distinguishes between "response" and "expressed response": " i f response cannot be wholly and d i r e c t l y measured or taught, i t s a r t i c u l a t i o n can be" (p. 709). The next section treats response to l i t e r a t u r e at a fundamental l e v e l of a r t i c u l a t i o n : the a b i l i t y to make sound- symbol correspondence. IV. Importance of l i t e r a c y As was mentioned i n Chapter Two, the a b i l i t y to read or respond to printed l e t t e r s i s an increasing p r i o r i t y . Of the past three to four decades, T i l a k (1989) reports: the world has experienced an education explosion . . . world enrolments i n a l l lev e l s of education, from the primary to the t e r t i a r y , expanded from about 250 m i l l i o n i n 1950 to 906 m i l l i o n i n 1985 . . . More than half of the population of the age group 6-24 i n the world are presently i n schools and colleges . . . between 1960 and 1985 . . . adult l i t e r a t e s i n the world doubled from 1,134 m i l l i o n to 2,314 m i l l i o n . . . (p. 1) Of h i s review of current research, T i l a k concludes that education (and the emphasis i s on primary education or basic l i t e r a c y ) i s the key to a country's prosperity. Education contributes s i g n i f i c a n t l y to economic growth; as well, i t i s s i g n i f i c a n t i n reducing poverty (p. 60). This i s suggested i n i n d i v i d u a l as well as national s u r v i v a l . Keefer (1990) suggests: That very abstract term, l i t e r a c y , has the connotation of bringing l i g h t into darkness, of educating m i l l i o n s i n the Third World - and thousands i n our own country - who l i v e impoverished and oppressed l i v e s , deprived of the s k i l l s that would allow them to f i n d the work and to assert the r i g h t s that might give them the chance for a decent and d i g n i f i e d l i f e - or for l i f e at a l l . (p. 119) And Bruce (1990) observes: i t i s as hard . . . to imagine what i t ' s l i k e to be i l l i t e r a t e as i t i s to imagine what i t ' s l i k e to be mute, bli n d , and deaf. Being i l l i t e r a t e must be l i f e imprisonment i n a dark hole. (p. 21) The importance of being able to read and write i s compounded by the fa c t that l i t e r a c y i s a c r i t e r i o n with increasingly higher standards. In V i c t o r i a n England, l i t e r a c y was defined as "the a b i l i t y to sign the marriage r e g i s t e r 1 " ( A l t i c k , 1957, p. 169). As recently as 1950, UNESCO defined l i t e r a c y as no more than the " a b i l i t y to read and write one's own name" (UNESCO, 1957). The current c r i t e r i o n i s no less than a person "who can with understanding both read and write a short simple statement on h i s everyday l i f e " (UNESCO, 1983) . In addition, Applebee, Langer and M u l l i s (1987) suggest that t h i s c r i t e r i o n for minimum s u r v i v a l i s today A l t i c k (1957) explains that Victorians, not proud of the l e v e l of l i t e r a c y , proposed that the large number of "x" signatures on the marriage r e g i s t e r revealed, not genuine i l l i t e r a c y , but merely apprehension about the impending commitment. expanding t o i n c l u d e a l s o : "the a b i l i t y t o r e a s o n e f f e c t i v e l y " (pp. 7-8). I t would be u n u s u a l i f the c u l t u r a l importance o f l i t e r a c y had no e f f e c t on contemporary r e s e a r c h c o n c e p t i o n s o f the re sponses o f a d u l t s and c o l l e g e s t u d e n t s t o l i t e r a t u r e , e s p e c i a l l y s i n c e much of the r e s e a r c h i s concerned w i t h a p i v o t a l segment o f s o c i e t y , the c o l l e g e s t u d e n t . T h i s age group marks both the o f f i c i a l end of c h i l d h o o d and the b e g i n n i n g o f a d u l t h o o d . I t s i g n i f i e s the end o f mandatory e d u c a t i o n and u s u a l l y , the b e g i n n i n g o f p r e p a r a t i o n f o r a c a r e e r . I t would seem t h a t r e s e a r c h on re sponse t o l i t e r a t u r e w i t h a d u l t s and c o l l e g e s t u d e n t s s h o u l d r e p r e s e n t the p i n n a c l e o f succes s i n l i t e r a c y . A . "Response t o l i t e r a t u r e " i n d a i l y l i f e A l t h o u g h i t i s i m p o r t a n t t o remember t h a t a r t i c u l a t i o n i s the p r i m a r y p e d a g o g i c a l a s surance o f l i t e r a c y , t h i s i s not the most c o n v e n t i o n a l form of response i n d a i l y a d u l t l i f e . B e g i n n i n g w i t h the i d e a o f l i t e r a t u r e as r e f e r r i n g t o a l l p r i n t e d m a t t e r , re sponse t o l i t e r a t u r e i n d a i l y l i f e i s u s u a l l y i n a r t i c u l a t e . The words on a c e r e a l box, p r i n t on b i l l b o a r d s and unbidden g r a f f i t i a r e o f t e n r e a d w i t h o u t comment, o r even r e c o g n i z e d w i t h o u t accompanying t h o u g h t . A second type o f i n a r t i c u l a t e re sponse r e f e r s t o what R o s e n b l a t t c a l l s " e f f e r e n t " and what Hunt and V i p o n d c l a s s i f y as " i n f o r m a t i o n " r e a d i n g : the r e a d i n g o f c o o k i n g d i r e c t i o n s , 45 ap p l i c a t i o n forms, l i b r a r y catalogues, assignment directions, and t r a f f i c signs. A t h i r d type of response i n d a i l y l i f e , also i n a r t i c u l a t e , r e f e r s to aesthetic or pleasure reading. N e l l (1988a) suggests that i t i s s o l e l y the lack of expressed response which distinguishes pleasure from work reading: . . . the moment evaluative demands intrude, as i n the case of an absorbed reader suddenly t o l d that he or she i s to produce a c r i t i c a l review of the book, l u d i c reading, i n obedience to a va r i e t y of mechanisms (Apter, 1979; Deci, 1976), at once becomes work reading: the response demand tri g g e r s a perceived e f f o r t f u l n e s s . (p. 75, emphasis mine) Thus, he suggests that once a reader knows that a response i s expected, the pleasure of reading suddenly becomes work. Bogdan (1986) elaborates a d i f f e r e n t view of response to l i t e r a t u r e which, i f not c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of most response i n d a i l y l i f e , i s at least beyond pedagogy. I t i s the highest type of aesthetic response, " s t a s i s " : . . . an intensely personal and private experience best expressed by silence, i t [stasis] i s usually marked by a recession of cognitive f a c u l t i e s and a near p a r a l y s i s of l i n g u i s t i c powers . . . i t may be defined as that i d e a l state of imaginative i d e n t i t y with the l i t e r a r y object, t y p i f i e d by the fusion of i n t e l l e c t and emotion, which l i t e r a t u r e teachers always aim at but only r a r e l y succeed i n t r i g g e r i n g , (p. 52) In a moderate statement which of f e r s a balance between these two l a t t e r examples, Rosenblatt (1978), who generally stresses the value of expressed response, also acknowledges the worth of i n a r t i c u l a t e reading of "popular" materials. She r e f e r s to 46 the mass-production of popular texts which make.few demands on t h e i r readers and whose readers make few demands on the texts or on themselves . . . i t i s probably among these readers that the fre e s t , most honest and most personal l i t e r a r y transactions occur, (p. 140, emphasis mine) Thus i n a r t i c u l a t i o n i s c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of both the sp e c i a l response of heightened l i t e r a r y insight as well the bulk of non-pedagogical reading. However, the only proof of l i t e r a c y i s a response which i s a r t i c u l a t e d through a demonstration or t e s t . An i n i t i a l c r i t e r i o n of pedagogical conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e i s that the response be a r t i c u l a t e . Hansson (1985) underlines the challenges: The meaning of a work may be v i v i d l y present i n our response, but the words to describe the meaning are not available, or they are f e l t to be i n s u f f i c i e n t or p a r t l y misleading. The expressed response i s not an adequate representation of the c l e a r l y f e l t or grasped response, (p. 212) V. Pedagogical "response to l i t e r a t u r e " : mechanistic and new paradigm views Mechanistic and new paradigm world views, deriving from s c i e n t i f i c theories are the foundation from which pedagogical theories of response to l i t e r a t u r e derive. The discussion w i l l turn b r i e f l y to these i n f l u e n t i a l s c i e n t i f i c theories. Contemporary world views, supported by the thinking of Descartes and Newton, generally emphasize a mechanistic view of r e a l i t y . Mechanism i s defined as "the view that a l l natural processes are explicable i n terms of Newtonian r 47 mechanics" (Webster's Dictionary, 1980). Capra (1988) explains: i n Newtonian mechanics a l l physical phenomena are reduced to the motion of material p a r t i c l e s , caused by t h e i r mutual a t t r a c t i o n , that i s , by the force of gravity . . . material objects moved, and were thought to account for a l l changes observed i n the physical world . . . the mechanistic view of nature i s . . . c l o s e l y r e l a t e d to a rigorous determinism, with the giant cosmic machine completely causal and determinate. A l l that happened had a d e f i n i t e cause and gave r i s e to a d e f i n i t e e f f e c t . . . (p. 66) Theories r e s u l t i n g from three s c i e n t i f i c experiments at the beginning of the century (Einstein's general theory of r e l a t i v i t y , 1915; Bohr's quantum mechanics, 1913; Heisenberg's uncertainty p r i n c i p l e , 1927) offered s c i e n t i f i c evidence to challenge the p r e v a i l i n g common-sense world views. Bleich (1978) emphasizes that " i n each case ( i . e. the formulations of Einstein, Bohr, and Heisenberg) the r o l e of the observer i s paramount" (p. 18). Bohm (1986), from the area of t h e o r e t i c a l physics, describes the basic features of quantum mechanics which contradict mechanism: 1. One i s that movement, energy and momentum are no longer continuous as c l a s s i c a l physics says . . . a l l energy i s transferred i n discrete quanta that are not analyzable. This already implies the i n d i v i s i b i l i t y of the universe because a l l parts of the universe are interconnected by quanta that cannot be divided. 2. I t says that everything i s both wave-like and p a r t i c l e - l i k e . . . according to the experimental environment. So i t i s rather l i k e an organism whose basic c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s depend on the environment, rather than l i k e a fi x e d mechanical system. 3. There i s another qua l i t y of wholeness i n quantum theory due to a peculiar connection of distant things c a l l e d non-locality, which means that things that are far from each other can be strongly connected. They are not 48 necessarily connected by things that are p h y s i c a l l y close to them. (p. 7) Thus, although not proposing a viewpoint which was 2 . . . e n t i r e l y new , discoveries i n science which defied l o g i c a l explanation began to a t t r a c t attention i n diverse areas. Dewey and Bentley (1949), i n Knowing and the known, derive philosophical implications from these s c i e n t i f i c experiments. They use the word "transactional" to describe the " i n t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p between the knower and what i s known" (p. 128). Rosenblatt (1978) borrows t h e i r term to describe a new way of thinking about reading, the Transactive or Organic orien t a t i o n of response to l i t e r a t u r e . Bleich (1978) also explores the implications of s c i e n t i f i c discovery. He mentions s p e c i f i c a l l y the work of Kuhn, Einstein, Bohr and Heisenberg. He proposes epistemological implications leading to a subjective paradigm which extend to the area of response to l i t e r a t u r e . The New C r i t i c s , by comparison with these others, seem to hold firmly to the idea of a mechanistic view of the reading experience, i n which there i s a clear boundary between text and reader. Leading from these discussions, conventional pedagogical conceptions of a r t i c u l a t e d response to l i t e r a t u r e can be considered to centre around three general emphases: 1) Capra (1988) points out that "before 1500 the dominant world view i n Europe, as well as i n most other c i v i l i z a t i o n s , was organic. . . the s c i e n t i f i c framework of the organic world view rested on two a u t h o r i t i e s — A r i s t o t l e and the Church" (p. 53). 49 Objective or New C r i t i c a l , which focuses on a r e a l i t y "out there", i n the text; 2) Subjective or Psychoanalytic, which focuses on a r e a l i t y "inside", i n the reader; and 3) Transactive or Organic, which focuses on the moment of response i t s e l f , "the o s c i l l a t i n g dynamics of reading" between external and int e r n a l r e a l i t y (Straw and Bogdan, 1990). These orientations are generally recognized as d i s t i n c t perspectives of "response to l i t e r a t u r e " (Purves, 1985; Rosenblatt, 1978; Probst, 1989 [New C r i t i c a l ] ; Chabot, 1985 [Psychoanalytic]. I t should also be noted that each of these general orientations towards the reading experience i s based on theory-laden observations of r e a l readers. Although recognizably d i s t i n c t , and often used as glosses on each other, these d i f f e r i n g orientations share many features, which are generally overlooked. The major components to be discussed are those of: 1) the author; 2) the text; 3) the reader; and 4) the response s i t u a t i o n . A. Text-orientation: associated c r i t i c a l school The text-oriented view of response to l i t e r a t u r e i s often associated with names such as Brooks, Warren, Wellek, Ransom (Straw, 1990). The I.A. Richards of (1929) P r a c t i c a l c r i t i c i s m i s often included. New C r i t i c i s m i s rooted i n that aspect of the Cartesian view which conceives of human knowledge as a progression toward absolute truth. C u l l e r (1988) dates New C r i t i c i s m as or i g i n a t i n g from 1920, i n an argument that "poetry i s not the expression of personality but the escape from personality" i n T.S. E l i o t ' s The sacred wood, and as a conservative Southern resistance to values associated with science, in d u s t r i a l i s m and urbanization, (p. 9) C u l l e r suggests that " E l i o t ' s early c r i t i c i s m provided a theory of poetry which could be linked with the close analysis of verbal texture practised by I.A. Richards" (p. 10). However, Purves (1985) s p e c i f i e s important d i s t i n c t i o n s between the thinking of Richards (1929) and Wellek and Warren (1956), the l a t t e r authors asserting "that the poem i s a 'structure* of norms which can be approximated by the reader- c r i t i c , but not f u l l y apprehended" (p. 54). The popularity of t h i s text-oriented approach during the l a t e twenties arose primarily i n opposition to both the p r e v a i l i n g emphases on impressionistic and biographical c r i t i c i s m as well as an increasing f a i t h i n the language and 3 t r u t h of science . Hunt (1990) observes the paradox that although the New C r i t i c s were attempting to o f f e r a balance and thus were opposed to a " s c i e n t i f i c - t e c h n o l o g i c a l world view", t h e i r approach to l i t e r a t u r e i s s o l i d l y p o s i t i v i s t " i n (the) assumption that there.is an exterior, t h e o r e t i c a l l y knowable "truth" (the text) out there" (p. 100, emphasis i n o r i g i n a l ) . The c h a r a c t e r i s t i c a l l y defensive attitude i s suggested even i n Tate's Preface to the (1942) Language of poetry: "The symposium comes to a unanimous decision on . . . the main question: that poetry, although i t i s not science, i s not nonsense" (p. v i i i ) . The New C r i t i c s attempted to balance p r e v a i l i n g views by emphasizing the r a t i o n a l rather than emotional. Rosenblatt (1978) sees Wellek and Warren's (1949) Theory of l i t e r a t u r e as contributing probably the clearest and most i n f l u e n t i a l t h e o r e t i c a l framework for concentration on "the poem i t s e l f " as against i t s study as a document i n l i t e r a r y or s o c i a l history, (p. 103-4) "Emphasis should be kept on the poem", Wellek and Warren proposed (p. x i ) . Rosenblatt (1978) describes t h i s o r i e n t a t i o n as "dominated by the notion of something non- personal, something apart from p a r t i c u l a r readers, which ' i s ' the poem" (p. 104). Probst (1989) remarks of New C r i t i c a l views: "perhaps the most s i g n i f i c a n t of these i s the notion that the l i t e r a r y work sets the standard by which a reading may be judged" (p. 2) . In addition, Rosenblatt (1978) describes the New C r i t i c a l "concern for formal values", "analytic s k i l l s " , "notion of poem-as-object, and the neglect of both author and reader" (p. x i i ) . 1. Concept of the author For the New C r i t i c , the author i s the shadow behind the text. Straw (1990) goes even further i n his observation of the New C r i t i c a l viewpoint. The author i s "not only i n v i s i b l e , but nonexistent" (p. 56). He points out that contributors to New C r i t i c a l thought such as Wimsatt and 52 Beardsley, c r i t i c i z e those who a t t r i b u t e the meaning of a work to "the intention of the author" (p. 56). Gerber (1967) describes the New C r i t i c a l focus on the text, apart from the author: We are to keep away from the author because we must remember that the author i s only playing a r o l e , and so the author i s not r e a l l y the author. We are to forget our own experience because the action of the narrative i s probable or improbable only i n terms of the narrative i t s e l f , (p. 355) E.D. Hirsch (1967) condemns the New C r i t i c s for t h e i r "banishment of the author" (p. 1). Thus the New C r i t i c i s m , as an i l l u s t r a t i o n of a text-oriented approach of response to l i t e r a t u r e , centres on the importance of the text rather than the author. 2. Concept of l i t e r a t u r e For the New C r i t i c s , l i t e r a t u r e often takes the form of poetry. Ransom (1941) suggests that "poetry intends to recover the denser and more refractory o r i g i n a l world which we know loosely through our perceptions and memories" (p. 281). Correspondingly, "the theory and c r i t i c i s m of poetry" are f a r superior " i n both quantity and q u a l i t y " to that of prose, for example, the novel (Wellek and Warren, 1956, p. 212). For the New C r i t i c s , the text looms larger than poet or reader: "the r e a l poem must be conceived as a structure of norms, r e a l i z e d only p a r t i a l l y i n the actual experience of i t s many readers" (Wellek and Warren, 1956, p. 150). Hunt (1990) observes that for New C r i t i c s , the i n d i v i d u a l reactions of actual readers are of l i t t l e i n t e r e s t . . . to study such responses . . . would be to abandon l i t e r a t u r e i n favor of psychology, (p. 99) A f i n a l c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of the New C r i t i c a l approach to l i t e r a t u r e concerns the nature of the text i t s e l f . Since texts are e n t i t i e s with fixed q u a l i t i e s , there i s a hierarchy of texts with a canon at the top. 3. Concept of response During the twenties, New C r i t i c s seemed to pos i t the importance of the reader i n t h e i r proposal that the reader int e r p r e t the text d i r e c t l y rather than through the intermediary of c r i t i c s . However, seen i n l i g h t of subsequent orientations, the emphasis i s decidedly on the text i t s e l f . For the New C r i t i c s , the function of reading l i t e r a t u r e i s to give "pleasure i n a higher kind of a c t i v i t y , that i s , non-acquisitive contemplation" accompanied by a "pleasurable seriousness" of "perception" (Wellek and Warren, 1956, p. 31). Thus, t h i s text-based "pleasure" i s arrived at by hard work. The New C r i t i c places cognition over a f f e c t ; external over i n t e r n a l r e a l i t y . Wimsatt and Beardsley (1949) emphasize a text - o r i e n t a t i o n of response i n t h e i r observation that the A f f e c t i v e Fallacy i s a confusion between the poem and i t s r e s u l t s . . . I t begins by t r y i n g to derive the standard of c r i t i c i s m from the psychological e f f e c t s of 54 the poem and ends i n impressionism and r e l a t i v i s m , (p. 345) Straw (1990) explains the text-based emphasis of the New C r i t i c s i n his observation that they were not only "unconcerned about the a f f e c t i v e e f f e c t " of the l i t e r a r y work, but they also believed that "the reader should not be concerned with the emotional e f f e c t of the poem or the l i t e r a r y work" (p. 56). Jones (1977) observes: The New C r i t i c i s m . . . saw the i d e a l reader as a sort of Lockean tabula rasa to whom the text, upon ca r e f u l scrutiny, revealed i t s complexities. Interpretation then became e s s e n t i a l l y a discovery of meanings already encoded i n the text. (p. 205) Purves (1985) comments that i n t h i s perspective: one i s , i n sum, examining error and i t s causes . . . researchers may legitimately use such techniques as the r a t i n g of papers or interviews or multiple-choice tests on a text, and the attendant criterion-based modes of analysis, (p. 55) Response, for the New C r i t i c , i s more often than not a t e s t of the reader's a b i l i t y . The answer w i l l be r i g h t only to the extent that i t approximates a f u l l i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of the meaning i n the text. Thus, the focus of response i s on convergent, public interpretations, rather than divergent, more subjective impressions. Gerber (1967) points out that: Paradoxically, while formal analysis presumably requires the reader to concentrate upon the l i t e r a r y text to the v i r t u a l exclusion of other considerations, i t at the same time sets up a cordon s a n i t a i r e between the reader and the work that distances the work almost as successfully as the h i s t o r i c a l approach. In f a c t i t i s the basic theory of the New C r i t i c i s m , that l i t e r a t u r e should be kept separate from l i f e . (p. 354) 55 For the New C r i t i c s , the reader's response i s judged against the standards set by the poem. However, the subjective roots are unmasked in practice. Since the poem can not a c t u a l l y "speak", New C r i t i c s r e l y on the evaluations of l i t e r a r y c r i t i c s or teachers to speak for the poem. Not s u r p r i s i n g l y , and c e r t a i n l y not disappointingly for the c r i t i c and teacher, the response of the average reader, or the student, i s often found to be lacking i n the general hierarchy of responses. B. Reader-orientation: associated c r i t i c a l school The reader-based orientation of response to l i t e r a t u r e i s concerned with psychological aspects of reading l i t e r a t u r e . Jones' (1949) work on Hamlet which was f i r s t published i n 1910 under the t i t l e , "The Oedipus complex as an explanation of Hamlet's mystery", was an early foundation for the connection between psychological theory of Freud and l i t e r a t u r e . Jones' works explored the r e l a t i o n between the psychology of the writer and his f i c t i o n a l characters. Jones went "through the work to the mind of the writer, t r e a t i n g the text as i f i t were an account of a fantasy" (Purves, 1985, p. 54). During the f i f t i e s , Simon Lesser made a major contribution to a reader-oriented approach to l i t e r a t u r e . Lesser's (1957) F i c t i o n and the unconscious proposes that " f i c t i o n speaks to us i n a language which e f f o r t l e s s l y conceals many things from conscious awareness at the same time that i t communicates them to the unconscious with extraordinary vividness" (p. 175). He suggests that i n reading, "we unconsciously understand at l e a s t some of a story's secret s i g n i f i c a n c e ; to some extent our enjoyment i s a product of t h i s understanding" (p. 15). Goldsmith (1979) observes that i n t h i s work, Lesser attempted to account for the psychological appeal of f i c t i o n based on the i n t e r a c t i o n between form and content (which he i n s i s t e d are r e a l l y inseparable but which he separated i n h i s study for the sake of convenience) and the psychological needs and c o n f l i c t s of the reader, (p. 78) Lesser explores fundamental aspects of the r e l a t i o n s h i p between psychology and l i t e r a t u r e . These include the issues of why f i c t i o n a l c o n f l i c t i s pleasurable, the function of form i n giving pleasure, and the m i t h r i d a t i c e f f e c t of a r t . He suggests that the reading of great l i t e r a t u r e i s distinguished by the temporary experience of "a c e r t a i n amount of anxiety, just as a vaccination gives us a small and controlled case of the disease i t i s meant to prevent" (Lesser, 1957, p. 260). Purves (1985) explains that l a t e r Freudians such as Norman Holland (1968) focused more c e n t r a l l y on the reader, "taking the text as a r e l a t i v e l y neutral phenomenon, a Rorschach blot to which the reader reacted according to the reader's ego-structure" (p. 54). An extreme of t h i s position, Purves proposes, i s suggested by Berkeley i n h i s (1774) S i r i s , which theorized that "natural 57 phaenomena are only natural appearances. They are therefore such as we see and perceive them" (p. 140). A l l these t h e o r e t i c a l approaches of response to l i t e r a t u r e are united i n the focus on the personality of the reader or writer rather than on the work i t s e l f . Subjective c r i t i c i s m provides an i l l u s t r a t i o n of a reader-oriented approach to response to l i t e r a t u r e . This c r i t i c i s m i s conventionally associated with names such as B l e i c h and Holland, (and sometimes Fish) as well as practices such as bibliotherapy and the use of l i t e r a t u r e i n psychotherapy. Chabot (1985) remarks of t h i s approach: . . . [ i t ] claims, or assumes that the processes i t finds central to reading - whether they be termed "the subjective paradigm" or "DEFT" - are, i n fact, d e f i n i t i v e of human cognition i n general, (p. 22) Thus, where the text-oriented conception of response finds i t s centre of gravity i n the text i t s e l f , the response of the reader-orientation, as represented by subjective c r i t i c i s m , focuses on the r o l e of the personality i n the reader's transaction with the text. Proponents of reader- orientations seem to emphasize that l i t e r a r y texts are perceived and understood i n the same way as l i f e i t s e l f . I t i s thus f e e l i n g rather than cognition which i s fundamental. Ble i c h (1969) i l l u s t r a t e s t h i s emphasis: . . . no matter who makes the c r i t i c a l judgment - no matter how impeccable his reputation for " o b j e c t i v i t y " - there i s an unarticulated emotional basis . . . (p. 30) Further: 58 the most that a reader can do with the r e a l object, the text, i s to see i t . . . discussion of the work must re f e r to the subjective synthesis of the reader and not to the reader's in t e r a c t i o n with the text. (Bleich, 1978, p. I l l ) 1. Concept of the author In the reader-oriented Subjective c r i t i c i s m , the author, l i k e the reader, i s a responder. Bleich (1969) makes the point that: the text represents the author's response to his own personality, much as our meaning represents our response to our own p e r s o n a l i t i e s . . . (p. 40) Thus, as concerns the l i t e r a r y transaction, the author, i n creating the work, i s reading his own personality just as the reader, i n reading the work, i s also reading h i s own personality. Both perspectives seem hermetically-sealed. 2. Concept of l i t e r a t u r e In Subjective c r i t i c i s m , the text i s a f l u i d e ntity, determined and controlled by the reader's response: "a l i t e r a r y work i s not a fixed stimulus" (Holland, 1975a, p. 43). Rosenblatt (1985) describes the reader-based aspect of "Subjective c r i t i c i s m " i n i t s perception of the text as "passive" or "secondary" (p. 36). Purves (1985) describes the Psychoanalytic conception of text "as a r e l a t i v e l y neutral phenomenon, a Rorschach bl o t " (p. 54) and r e f e r s to i t s " f r a g i l i t y " (p. 56). Holland (1975a) explains: s t o r i e s . . . do not present u n i t i e s - only so many marks on a page . . . i t i s readers who provide the unity . . . 59 there seems to be b u i l t into the mind a press towards unity, (p. 14) In discussions of the reader-orientation, the text referred to i s often narrative, i n the form of short s t o r i e s or plays, rather than poetry, which seems to be more c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of New C r i t i c i s m . "Literature" for the Subjective c r i t i c i s much l i k e l i f e i t s e l f : "an organic experience i n the minds of men and a part of the great continuum of human experience" (Holland, 1973, p. 134). 3. Concept of the response Feeling, i n Subjective c r i t i c i s m , i s more fundamental than cognition. Jones (1977) describes t h i s change i n perspectives (which he ascribes to Fish) from the New C r i t i c a l orientation: the epistemological order of the universe i s reversed, and the reader i s no longer a passive observer on the outside looking i n , but rather the one who constitutes meaning i n the i n t e r p r e t i v e process . . . (p. 205) In the Subjective orientation of Berkeley (1744): the response i s i n d i v i d u a l and implies that one must f i r s t examine individuals, seeing them as p a r t i c u l a r cases. L i t t l e may connect one reader to another . . . few generalizations about readers may be made common because of the i d i o s y n c r a t i c world of each reader. (Purves, 1985, pp. 55-6) Although founded more on the democratic l e v e l l e r of f e e l i n g rather than s k i l l - o r i e n t e d cognition, the requirement of r e f l e c t i v e response remains. As i n the text-oriented approach, there i s an i m p l i c i t hierarchy. For example, i n 60 Poems i n persons (1973), one of Holland's c r i t e r i a for subjects i s that they be those who give evidence of having experienced a heightened s e n s i t i v i t y . In addition, i f the text-oriented view of response to l i t e r a t u r e conceived of reading as problem-solving with the text as the problem, the reader-orientation often sees reading as problem-solving with the reader, s p e c i f i c a l l y his personality, as the problem. Bleich (1978) says that > understanding a work of l i t e r a t u r e can be seen as an "expression of the pe r s o n a l i t i e s of the readers" (p. 292). A reader who i s "learning more about l i t e r a t u r e " also "learns more of h i s own inner dynamics" (Holland, 1973, p. 134). The reader-orientation of response to l i t e r a t u r e , consistent with i t s idea of the f l u i d , dynamic nature of the text, tends to focus on the process, rather than the product. Thus t h i s orientation i s distinguished from the text- orientation, which espouses the text as fixed r e a l i t y and tends to focus more on the product rather than the process of response. Holland (1968) proposes: . . . a l l of us, as we read, use the l i t e r a r y work to symbolize and f i n a l l y , to r e p l i c a t e ourselves. We work out through the text our own c h a r a c t e r i s t i c patterns of desire and adaptation. We interact with the work, making i t part of our own psychic economy and making ourselves part of the l i t e r a r y work - as we interpret i t . (p. 816) The idea of response, i n the reader-orientation, i s not to persuade others but to learn about oneself. And i t involves e f f o r t : 61 t h i s model of l i t e r a t u r e as transformation suggests that the inanimate l i t e r a r y work i s not that, not a work in i t s e l f , but the occasion for some person's work (in the sense we give the word when we speak of the "dream-work" or creative "work"). (Holland, 1975a, p. 17) Although the reader-orientation i s conventionally conceived as personal and i d i o s y n c r a t i c , Holland (1975a) proposes t h i s aspect as a means to a larger end which seems to encompass both consensus and " o b j e c t i v i t y " : the f a c t we perceive the world i n the terms of our own s u b j e c t i v i t i e s has a p o s i t i v e , freeing side. I t i s only by being d i f f e r e n t from one another that we can have the experience of sharing . . . only by beginning with d i f f e r e n t s u b j e c t i v i t i e s can we a r r i v e at that consensus about experience that constitutes a l l the o b j e c t i v i t y subjective beings can have . . . I t i s only by having our o b j e c t i v i t y l i m i t e d that we can have any o b j e c t i v i t y whatever, (p. 231) Bleich (1986b) also suggests the underlying s o c i a l , rather than personal ends of reader-oriented response. He argues that readers gain "intersubjective knowledge" through p a r t i c i p a t i n g i n the "thought c o l l e c t i v e , or community i n which the reading takes place" (p. 418). In addition, although B l e i c h c r i t i c i s e s Holland for merely di s p l a c i n g the o b j e c t i v i t y to the reader from the text and assuming that the reader's personality i s fundamentally constant, De Beaugrande (1988a) points out that Bleich himself i s g u i l t y of a s i m i l a r tendency: Sometimes, he [Bleich] singles out students' "misinterpretations", remarking that "the ' r e a l ' parts of the poem got distorted", "exaggerated", or, "altogether misinterpreted" (p. 29, 30, 31). Other times, he decides the "poem" has been "perceived c o r r e c t l y " (p. 24) ( a l l the "poem" has been "perceived c o r r e c t l y " (p. 24) ( a l l from Readings and Feelings). (p. 2 38) Thus, the reader- and text-orientations of response to l i t e r a t u r e , as i l l u s t r a t e d by proponents of Subjective c r i t i c i s m on the one hand, and by New C r i t i c s on the other, have several t r a i t s i n common. The f i r s t i s the idea of movement towards closure i n response. For those who propose a text-orientation, response emanates from the text and i s complete when the underlying unity i s perceived i n a l l i t s complexity. For reader-oriented c r i t i c s , response flows from the reader's personality and i s considered "correct" when the reader i s f i l l e d with a "sense of plenitude, of a f u l l understanding of a coherent text" (Belsey, 1980, p. 104). Second, the goal of the reader-orientation, l i k e that of the text-ori e n t a t i o n of response, i s that l i t e r a r y response can a l t e r , rather than merely r e f l e c t s the personality of the reader; proper reading can make the reader a better person. Indeed, the commonality between the two opposing orientations i s emphasized i n Zaccaria and Moses1 (1969) explanation of the goals of bibliotherapy: . . . (to) help the in d i v i d u a l assimilate the c u l t u r a l pattern by acquainting him with the superstructure of attitudes and expectancies which he must erect on the basis of fundamental human impulses, (p. 10) It would seem that even proponents of a text- o r i e n t a t i o n would agree with the statement. A f i n a l s i m i l a r i t y , shared by both the reader- and the text- nature of the reading event. The New C r i t i c s were the f i r s t to suggest that the reader interpret the work d i r e c t l y , and determine i t s meaning without the aid of c r i t i c s and c r i t i c a l writings and h i s t o r i c a l and biographical knowledge of the period and the author. S i m i l a r l y , reader-orientations propose the importance of the moment of response. Holland (197 3) suggests: these p r i n c i p l e s urge us toward a l i t e r a r y c r i t i c i s m that takes as i t s subject matter, not a text, but the transaction between a reader and a text . . . the true focus of c r i t i c i s m has to be the r e l a t i o n between oneself and the text . . . transactive c r i t i c i s m , (p. 247-8) Thus, as well as noting the differences, i t i s also important to note the common ground shared i n the ideas of what are often presented as opposing orientations. C. Response-orientation: associated c r i t i c a l school The response-orientation of "response to l i t e r a t u r e " i s associated with labels such as "audience-oriented c r i t i c i s m " (Suleiman and Crosman, 1980; Johnson, 1988), "transactional c r i t i c i s m " (Rosenblatt, 1978) and "reader-response c r i t i c i s m " (Tompkins, 1980). I t became popular i n the early seventies, with Rosenblatt recognized as i t s f i r s t proponent (Suleiman, 1980; Tompkins, 1980). This focus on the response as distinguished from a focus on the text i t s e l f or the reader's personality, i s also associated with names such as Fish (Leitch, 1977; Tompkins, 1977; Jones, 1977) and Iser. Hynds (1990) proposes that "reader-response c r i t i c i s m and research" 64 represents a move (which she ascribes to Rosenblatt) from text to reader which i s more than simply rel o c a t i n g the source of meaning: i t represented a s h i f t i n g focus from sources of misinterpretation i n a l i t e r a r y work (a determinate model) to the variety of possible responses within any community of readers (an indeterminate model). (p. 241) Relating early s c i e n t i f i c ideas presented i n Dewey and Bentley's (1949) Knowing; and the Known to the reading of 7 l i t e r a t u r e , Rosenblatt (1978) uses the term "transaction" from Dewey and Bentley to characterize a new way of perceiving response to l i t e r a t u r e : An element of the environment (the marks on a page) becomes a text by v i r t u e of i t s p a r t i c u l a r r e l a t i o n s h i p with the reader, who i n turn i s a reader by v i r t u e of his r e l a t i o n s h i p to the text. And at the same time the term transaction, as I use i t , , implies that the reader brings to the text a network of past experiences i n l i t e r a t u r e and i n l i f e . (p. 35) Even though the response-orientation appears to encompass both the text- and reader-orientations i n a larger c i r c l e , Rosenblatt (1978) states that she c a l l s t h i s : "'transactional c r i t i c i s m ' , to d i f f e r e n t i a t e i t both from so- c a l l e d 'objective c r i t i c i s m ' and from s e l f - e x p l o i t i n g n a r c i s s i s t i c impressionism or s u b j e c t i v i t y " (p. 174). In Rosenblatt's (1938) e a r l i e r work, Lit e r a t u r e as exploration, she had described the concept of "transaction" but used the word "i n t e r a c t i o n " : " I t i s t h i s i n t e r a c t i o n between the reader and the book - a process that may be compared to the i n t e r a c t i o n of two chemical compounds . . . " (pp. 33-34). In her l a t e r work t h i s same concept i s described as a "transaction". 65 The text-orientation of response to l i t e r a t u r e had posited the importance of the text. The reader-orientation emphasized the importance of the reader. I t i s the response- orientation, as i l l u s t r a t e d by Rosenblatt, which proposes the importance of balance between the two . Rosenblatt (1985a) states: "from the beginning, while affirming the importance of the neglected reader, I have i n s i s t e d on the contribution of both reader and text" (p. 33). Purves and Beach (1972) suggest that she c a r r i e s t h i s balance into the classroom, i n that her emphasis i s : " f i r s t on the process of i n t e r a c t i o n between reader and text that r e s u l t s i n interpretation, and second, on the teaching process" (Rosenblatt, 1985b, p. 34). Willinsky (1988) points out that Rosenblatt extends t h i s balance to the "twin moral obligations of the democracy", beginning with the "affirmation of the sovereignty of the i n d i v i d u a l " and moving towards "an awareness of others" (p. 125). Rosenblatt (1990) agrees: . . . teachers of language and l i t e r a t u r e have a c r u c i a l r o l e to play as educators and c i t i z e n s . We phrase our goals as fostering the growth of the capacity for personally meaningful, s e l f - c r i t i c a l l i t e r a r y experience. The educational process that achieves t h i s aim most e f f e c t i v e l y w i l l serve a broader purpose, the nurturing of men and women capable of building a f u l l y democratic society, (p. 107) Indeed, Purves (1989) suggests that Rosenblatt herself, through her own writing i n response to the needs of the time, has performed a balancing function: she states that her reason for emphasizing aesthetic over efferent reading was that i t was being neglected i n the schools. 66 The f u l l a r t i c u l a t i o n of the response-orientation i s elaborated i n Rosenblatt's (1978) The reader, the text, the poem, i n which she proposes that the reading act can be thought of as an event. In t h i s event, "as with the elements of an e l e c t r i c c i r c u i t , each component of the reading process functions by v i r t u e of the presence of others" (p. 14). This view of reading as an event finds correspondences i n the thinking of Fish (1971): "Meaning i s an e v e n t , something that happens between the flow of p r i n t (or sound) and the a c t i v e l y mediating consciousness of a reader-hearer" (p. x.). Iser (1978) i s another who speaks of the work "as being located somewhere between text and reader, actualized as a r e s u l t of the i n t e r a c t i o n between the two" (p. 10). Like Rosenblatt, Iser also speaks of the r e l a t i o n s h i p between reader and text as being a kind of s e l f - r e g u l a t i n g system (p. 67). However, Iser (1980) does not distinguish, as does Rosenblatt, between "evocation" and "response". He argues instead that readers, through a continuous process of "forming and overturning i l l u s i o n s , maintain a "wandering viewpoint" during the reading (Iser, 1980, p. 334) . However for Rosenblatt (1980), the evocation i s the point at which the "work" of response begins: I have developed at length the thesis that once t h e r e has i n d e e d been a l i v e d - t h r o u g h e v o c a t i o n from the t e x t , students can be led toward increasingly s e l f - c r i t i c a l and sound inte r p r e t a t i o n and enhanced capacity to r e l a t e the experience to l i t e r a r y , h i s t o r i c a l or s o c i a l contexts, (p. 395). Purves (1989) observes that Rosenblatt conceives of l i t e r a r y reading not "so much as a form of therapy or escape as a set of mediating experiences which can be used to challenge the mind and i t s values" (p. 69). Rosenblatt proposes the now-classic d i s t i n c t i o n between two d i f f e r e n t ways of responding to text: aesthetic and efferent readings. These have s i m i l a r i t i e s with Kant's d i s t i n c t i o n between discourses with i n t e r n a l or external purposes. Valery (in Abrams, 1953) likens the d i s t i n c t i o n to either walking to a destination or dancing. During aesthetic reading, which i s commonly associated with f i c t i o n a l pieces, the reader concentrates "on what he i s l i v i n g through during the reading event" (Rosenblatt, 1985, p. 38). What he i s l i v i n g through, becomes, i n essence, the poem. During efferent reading, the reader i s focusing "mainly on what the words r e f e r to, on what i s to be taken away from the transaction" (Rosenblatt, 1985, p. 38). Rosenblatt proposes that "any l i t e r a r y transaction w i l l f a l l somewhere i n the continuum between the aesthetic and the efferent poles" (Rosenblatt, 1985, p. 38). Purves (1989) agrees that these d i s t i n c t i o n s appear to be poles between which a reader may o s c i l l a t e during the course of reading a given text, and the sum t o t a l of reading may tend 'on average' to be seen as aesthetic or efferent, (p. 72) Thus, as i n the reader-orientation, i t i s not e n t i r e l y the i n t r i n s i c q u a l i t i e s of the text, but i n large part, often the 68 reader's stance which determines the nature of the response experience. 1. Concept of the author Rosenblatt (1978) claims: nothing that I have said or s h a l l say denies that the text i s the outward and v i s i b l e r e s u l t of an author's creative a c t i v i t y . Nor does i t deny the importance of the author's text. (p. 15) Response i s thus conceived as a r h e t o r i c a l act between author and reader: "the reader weaves his responses into an utterance sensed as a p a r t i c u l a r voice of a p a r t i c u l a r kind of persona" (Rosenblatt, 1978, p. 57). 2. Concept of l i t e r a t u r e Rosenblatt proposes that the text, i n the response orientation, i s constructed during a stage c a l l e d evocation, to d i s t i n g u i s h i t from the product, or the response. Rosenblatt (1985a) c a r e f u l l y distinguishes between "evocation" and "response", the f i r s t being "what we sense as the structured experience corresponding to the text" and the second, "the response to that evocation" (p. 39). In doing so, she thus combines the reader-oriented, Subjective emphasis on process with the text-oriented, New C r i t i c a l emphasis on product. However, l i k e the text-orientations of response, and rather unlike extremist views of reader- orien t a t i o n which focus on process, the f u l l response i s not 69 achieved u n t i l the reading of the end of the text: "He had not f u l l y read the f i r s t l i n e u n t i l he had read the l a s t , and in t e r r e l a t e d them" (Rosenblatt, 1978, p. 10). Also, l i k e the text-oriented New C r i t i c a l approach, sometimes i t seems that i t i s the text which ultimately l i m i t s and controls the response: two prime c r i t e r i a of v a l i d i t y as I understand i t are that the reader's interpretation not be contradicted by any element of the text, and that nothing be projected for which there i s no verbal basis. (Rosenblatt, 1978, p. 115) At other times, i t seems that both text and reader are equally c o n t r o l l i n g : the text presents l i m i t s or controls; the personality and culture brought by the reader constitute another type of l i m i t a t i o n of the resultant synthesis, the lived-through work of art . (Rosenblatt, 1978, p. 129) In s t i l l other instances, the reader seems to triumph: In the l a s t analysis, i t i s always i n d i v i d u a l readers evaluating t h e i r own personal transactions with the text; we must recognize the uniqueness that derives from the indi v i d u a l ' s p a r t i c u l a r selecting-out of elements from the c u l t u r a l milieu, and the spe c i a l value-demands due to the unique moment i n the reader's l i f e i n which the l i t e r a r y transaction takes place. (Rosenblatt, 1978, p. 153) Thus, the response-orientation, as i l l u s t r a t e d by Rosenblatt, suggests the constantly changing emphasis of response. 3. Concept of response Even though Rosenblatt claims that she had not written her 1978 work to "make the reader all-important" (p. x i i ) , 70 she adds l a t e r : "meaning w i l l emerge from a network of relat i o n s h i p s among the things symbolized as he senses them" (emphasis mine, p. 11). But then again, "the text i t s e l f leads the reader toward t h i s s e l f - c o r r e c t i v e process" (p. 11). Evocation i s private: "the reading of any work of l i t e r a t u r e i s , of necessity, an in d i v i d u a l and unique occurrence involving the mind and emotions of a p a r t i c u l a r reader" (p. x i i ) . But t h i s reading also has communal dimensions: "perhaps we should consider the text as an even more general medium of communication among r e a d e r s " (p. 146). As concerns the r o l e of the c r i t i c among readers, she suggests that "no more than any other reader, however, can the c r i t i c read the text for us" (p. 147). In the next paragraph, however, she observes: c r i t i c s may reveal the text's p o t e n t i a l i t i e s for responses d i f f e r e n t - perhaps more se n s i t i v e and complex - from our own . . . the c r i t i c may have developed a f u l l e r and more a r t i c u l a t e awareness of the l i t e r a r y , e t h i c a l , s o c i a l or philosophic concepts that he brings to the l i t e r a r y transaction, and may thus provide us with a basis for uncovering the assumptions underlying our own responses . . . i n t h i s way, c r i t i c s may function . . . as teachers, stimulating us to grow i n our own capacities to p a r t i c i p a t e c r e a t i v e l y and s e l f - c r i t i c a l l y i n l i t e r a r y transactions, (p. 148) Thus, c r i t i c s can lead the way, but again l a t e r , "even more perhaps than i n the area of interpretation, evaluation o f f e r s no simple or s t a t i c absolutes" (p. 153). F i n a l l y , "recognition of each reading as a personal event does not necessitate disregard for the more usual c r i t e r i a of evaluation, predicated on some kind of consensus" (p. 160). 71 As i s consistent with i t s moderating position, the context of response i n the transactional or response- or i e n t a t i o n i s neither e n t i r e l y safe nor completely threatening. The reader needs to be comfortable during the evocation of the work, but during the "response", he needs to be guided and challenged i n his thinking: "[teachers] must help him [the student] to achieve for himself a r i c h and humane moral philosophy" (Rosenblatt, 1968, p. 23). Response, i n the transactional approach, thus seems to be characterized by balance. In order to r e t a i n t h i s balance, however, the approach must acknowledge both the su p e r i o r i t y of more experienced readers as well as, at the same time, affirming the equal value of every reader's response. An important aspect of t h i s paradigm i s i t s constant to and fro focus. Although never mentioned i t seems to assume p a r a l l e l processing i n order for the reader to focus mainly or, i n Rosenblatt's (1978) words: "centre d i r e c t l y on what he i s l i v i n g through" (p. 25), a l l the while being aware of the necessity of an ensuing response, of being accountable for one's f l e e t i n g impressions. I t seems a challenge for the reader to "heighten(s) awareness of the words as signs with p a r t i c u l a r v i s u a l and auditory c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s and as symbols" (Rosenblatt, 1978, p. 29). S l a t o f f (1970) o f f e r s a possible explanation i n his description of the transaction: The single most important thing to observe about our emotional transactions with a l i t e r a r y work i s that they do not occur along single continua . . . Even the most lim i t e d reader i s capable of maintaining several 72 simultaneous states of r e l a t i o n and f e e l i n g toward a work . . . We can share the experience of G u l l i v e r , say, f e e l the experience, and at the same time view him with detachment and view with detachment the part of us that i s i d e n t i f y i n g , (pp 38-9) This response-orientation of the reading event i s unique i n i t s emphasis on both the reader and the text, united as i n a chemical reaction but both ret a i n i n g hegemony. Perhaps i t can be best summed up i n Rosenblatt's (1978) words: Apprehension of what a poem i s "about", what a novel "says" about the human meaning, the "sense" of the words, what they r e f e r to " i n the world" i s an e s s e n t i a l element, which cannot be dissociated from the a f f e c t i v e impact on the reader, given an aesthetic orientation, (p. 46) VII. Summary This chapter began with a look at the meanings of "response" i n contemporary d i c t i o n a r i e s . I t was concluded that the concept of response was expansive, denoting any change i n answer to a stimulus. Since the stimulus under discussion was l i t e r a t u r e i n both i t s nonhonorific and aesthetic sense, i t was pointed out that response i n d a i l y adult and college l i f e generally consisted of: 1) inadvertent reading; 2) efferent reading; 3) pleasure reading; as well as 4) the highest type of aesthetic reading, a l l of which were generally i n a r t i c u l a t e . Conventional conceptions of a r t i c u l a t e response involved three underlying orientations: 1) text-oriented; 2) reader-oriented; and 3) response- oriented. Although each of these i s re a d i l y understood as a d i s t i n c t way of reading or responding to l i t e r a t u r e , closer examination suggested i n t e r r e l a t i o n and interdependence. VIII. Conclusion The three orientations of response to l i t e r a t u r e were presented i n discussion as d i s t i n c t from each other by emphasizing differences, rather than s i m i l a r i t i e s i n p r i o r i t i e s . This type of presentation necessitates a data- reduction which r e f l e c t s a mechanistic world view of a fixed r e a l i t y with r i g i d boundaries. However, each of these points of emphasis on the text- response-reader continuum could also be viewed as having many shared areas of agreement as well as differences. F i r s t , a l l three orientations accept the hypothesis that readers a c t i v e l y construct, rather than passively receive meaning. Second, a l l three orientations emphasize the e t h i c a l and moral importance of response to l i t e r a t u r e . Third, a l l three orientations propose the s o c i a l nature of response and acknowledge, at some point, a hierarchy of responses. Fourth, a l l three orientations acknowledge the transactive nature of response. F i n a l l y , a l l three orientations conceive of reading as a type of work, a form of problem-solving. Thus, the three orientations from which to view research conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e are divided by important differences as well as linked by fundamental s i m i l a r i t i e s . The s e l e c t i o n of response orientation by the researcher, l i k e the selection of l i t e r a r y genre, may ari s e more out of value, than of l o g i c . Wellek and Warren (1956) propose: "we cannot comprehend and analyze any work of art without reference to value" (p. 156). Rosenblatt (1985a) suggests that: "the questions we r a i s e , our research designs, and our interpretations of our findings w i l l benefit from a c u l t u r a l perspective." (p. 51). Thus, important influences on research conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e would seem to be provided by the pedagogical and conventional values of the time i n which the research i s situated. 75 CHAPTER FOUR GROWTH AND DIVERSITY: 1910 - 49 I. Introduction 75 II . Overview 7 6 I I I . Social and pedagogical conditions: 1910-19 . . 77 A. Research: Psychology sets the stage . . . . 81 1. Research conceptions of l i t e r a t u r e . . 81 2. Research conceptions of response . . . 8 2 IV. S o c i a l and pedagogical conditions: 1920-29 . . . 84 A. Research: orientations take shape . . 88 1. Research conceptions of l i t e r a t u r e . . 88 2. Research conceptions of response . . . 89 V. So c i a l and pedagogical conditions: 1930-39 . . . 96 A. Research: aesthetics and appreciation . . . 99 1. Research conceptions of l i t e r a t u r e . . 99 2. Research conceptions of response . . . 101 VI. So c i a l and pedagogical conditions: 1940-9 . . . 109 A. Research: Peak of d i v e r s i t y i n conceptions . . 113 1. Research conceptions of l i t e r a t u r e . . 114 2. Research conceptions of response . . . 115 VII. Summary 125 VIII. Conclusions 127 I. Introduction The central emphasis of the next three chapters i s on conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e as they are r e a l i z e d i n the research. These are presented i n the context of both the foundation meanings delineated i n Chapters Two and Three as well as p r e v a i l i n g pedagogical and s o c i e t a l conditions. I t i s acknowledged that to t a l k of stages i n society and pedagogy i s to oversimplify a complex pattern of changes occurring at d i f f e r e n t times i n many places at varying speeds and with d i f f e r i n g degrees of s t a b i l i t y . To put dates to the stages or to the entry of p a r t i c u l a r components i s to oversimplify even 76 further. However, the attempt to make sense of the past by viewing i t through a framework with s p e c i f i c boundaries, i s a f i r s t step toward an understanding of the present. Research studies seem to f a l l n aturally into three major periods. The f i r s t period (1912-1949), the inception of the research, i s described i n t h i s chapter. The second period (1950-69), a t r a n s i t i o n stage, i s described i n Chapter Five. The t h i r d period (1970-89), i n which the trend seems to be towards a pedagogical focus on l i t e r a c y i n a new key, i s described i n Chapter Six. The research studies w i l l be discussed by decade, each to be introduced with a b r i e f r e c a p i t u l a t i o n of s o c i e t a l events and pedagogical conditions. The discussion of each research period begins with a consideration of conceptions of l i t e r a t u r e , as suggested by genres and s p e c i f i c l i t e r a r y works used. This i s followed by a consideration of conceptions of response, as suggested by an examination of hypotheses, research questions, and conditions of the research. II . Overview Button and Provenzo (1989) characterize general educational movements i n the f i r s t half of the decade: the 1910s had been the time of development and expansion of the one best system; the 1920s the time of i t s expansion; and the 1930s and 40s the time of i t s maintenance, (p. 229) In research on response to l i t e r a t u r e , however, these decades witness an ascendance of d i v e r s i t y i n research conceptions of both " l i t e r a t u r e " and "response to l i t e r a t u r e " . I I I . S o c i a l and pedagogical conditions: 1910-19 The beginnings of research on response to l i t e r a t u r e occurred i n the midst of rapid change. In the nineteenth century, both Canada and the United States were making the t r a n s i t i o n from a g r i c u l t u r a l to i n d u s t r i a l nations (Bennett, 1989, 374). In B r i t i s h Columbia, the lumber industry was i n the process of tremendous growth, so that by 1920, i t contained more than half of the country's sawmills (Finlay and Sprague, 1989, p. 246). This decade started with the population about equally divided between c i t i e s and r u r a l areas. However, f a c t o r i e s grew ra p i d l y i n both Canada and the United States and along with them the need for u n s k i l l e d labour. Emigration from European centres soared (Finlay and Sprague, 1989, p. 247). Although both Canada and B r i t a i n joined the war when i t began i n 1914, i t was not u n t i l 1917, the year i n which Canada i n s t i t u t e d Conscription and Federal income tax, that the United States entered. Although the decade closed with the "year of the s t r i k e s i n Canada", the biggest confrontation being the Winnipeg General Strike of 1919 (Bennett, 1989, p. 543), t h i s hardship was not c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of the decade as a whole. 78 During t h i s decade, developments i n transportation and communication along with mass population movements encouraged increasing awareness of an interdependent world. Trade had been advanced by improvements i n ship design and speed. Radio transmission of human speech had been made i n 1900. As mentioned i n Chapter Three, the discoveries of p h y s i c i s t s were challenging mechanistic world views. These theories suggested that the d i s t i n c t i o n s between time and space were mental rather than physical constructs. They also suggested that p o t e n t i a l i t y rather than a c t u a l i t y was the foundation of the universe and that the observer had a profound influence on events. However, such findings seemed to have l i t t l e e f f e c t outside the area of physics. In 1910, several u n i v e r s i t i e s were already established. The f i r s t u n i v e r s i t y i n Canada was Anglican King's College i n 1790. By the early 1800s, Dalhousie and Acadia were established. Five other major u n i v e r s i t i e s were established during the 1800s: McGill University (1829); V i c t o r i a College and Queens University (1841); University of Manitoba (1877); University of Western Ontario (1878); and McMaster University (1887). During the early 1900s, other Canadian u n i v e r s i t i e s were established: T r i n i t y College (1903); University of Saskatchewan (1907); University of Alberta (1908) ; University of B r i t i s h Columbia (helped by M c G i l l ) , (1915); and the University of Montreal (1920) ( P h i l l i p s , 1957, p. 211-12). 79 The most s t r i k i n g difference between colleges at the beginning of the century and those of today i s the change i n enrolment figures. Horowitz (1987) states of conditions i n the United States: i n 1880 less than 2 percent of those between eighteen and twenty-one attended college; by 1890 3 per cent did so. In the f i r s t h a l f of the twentieth century, the numbers roughly doubled every ten or twenty years. By 1900, 4 per cent of those between eighteen and twenty-one attended college; by 1920, 8 per cent; by 1940, 16 per cent . . . (p. 6) At the University of B r i t i s h Columbia, there were 379 students i n 1915 and 34 "members of the s t a f f " (Logan, 1958, p. 55). With the outbreak of war i n 1914, came "the opportunity of learning the fundamental lesson of service to humanity" (Logan, p. 69): . . . women students, i n t h e i r keenness, requested permission to k n i t for the s o l d i e r s i n lecture periods. A small newspaper containing University t i d b i t s of news was printed s p e c i a l l y for the UBC men at the front, (p. 70) With i t s roots i n rh e t o r i c and philology, the teaching of English l i t e r a t u r e as i t i s known at the present time i s , l i k e research on response to l i t e r a t u r e , a twentieth-century phenomenon (Parker, 1967, p. 339). Johnson (1988) points out that, between 1900 and 1920, "Composition" and "Rhetoric" were required components along with the study of l i t e r a r y periods and figures i n each year of the English course at such major Canadian u n i v e r s i t i e s as the University of Toronto, McGill, the University of New Brunswick, and Queens, (p. 868) 80 As concerns p a r t i c u l a r teaching emphases, the dominant trend was on detachment, analysis and "excessive concern for minutiae" (Parker, 1967, p. 353). B e r l i n (1987) describes the thinking behind the c u r r e n t - t r a d i t i o n a l r h e t o r i c , which was most prevalent at the time: truths are always external to the i n d i v i d u a l , located i n an exterior object. The task of the writer i n t h i s scheme i s to reproduce i n the mind of the reader the p a r t i c u l a r experience as i t took place i n the mind of the writer . . . the work of the writing teacher i s to teach the t r a n s c r i p t i o n process, providing i n s t r u c t i o n i n arrangement and style—arrangement so that the order of experience i s c o r r e c t l y recorded, and s t y l e so that c l a r i t y i s achieved and class a f f i l i a t i o n established, (p. 26-7) He points out that "the approach to l i t e r a r y c r i t i c i s m i n the new English department that appeared contemporaneously with t h i s r h e t o r i c was p e r f e c t l y compatible with i t , displaying a common epistemology . . . i t s approach emphasized p h i l o l o g i c a l and h i s t o r i c a l analysis, conceived i n empirical terms" (p. 27). Research on response to l i t e r a t u r e began early i n the century, as a r e s u l t of the emergence of psychology as a f i e l d d i s t i n c t from philosophy. Underlining the close t i e s between psychology and research on response to l i t e r a t u r e was the f a c t that beginning the experiments of early psychologists explored responses to printed words (Venezky, 1984) . I t was thus natural that psychologists were the f i r s t researchers on response to l i t e r a t u r e . 81 A. Research (1910-19): Psychology sets the stage The e a r l i e s t studies on response to l i t e r a t u r e with adult readers (See Appendix 3, Table 1) are those of the psychologists, Roblee and Washburn (1912) and G i v l e r (1915). 1. Research conceptions of l i t e r a t u r e The Roblee and Washburn (1912) study, "The a f f e c t i v e value of a r t i c u l a t e sounds", used s y l l a b l e s devoid of meaning as " l i t e r a t u r e " : the a r t i c u l a t e sounds which we selected f o r study were combinations of an i n i t i a l vowel and a f i n a l consonant. . . . had we used s y l l a b l e s with meaning, obviously the pleasantness or unpleasantness of the meanings would have wholly obscured that belonging to the sounds themselves, (p. 579) Si m i l a r l y , i n Givler's (1915) eight-year long experiment, "The psycho-physiological e f f e c t i n the elements of speech i n r e l a t i o n to poetry", he used 540,000 sounds derived from 18,000 l i n e s of poetry from poets such as Wordsworth, Shelley, Shakespeare and Arnold. He also uses t e n - l i n e passages of transmogrified poetry: O r i g i n a l : S p i r i t who sweepest the wild harp of the time! I t i s most hard with an untroubled ear Thy dark inwoven harmonies to hear! The transmogrification: Thu spard of tS§p i t swSS n l t h Sn £st warp MS trime i t zark who5 h i l d thu weer tild ov 5st l b n i dard wu nar t56" rees i n eem! (p. 83) The b e h a v i o r i s t i c orientation i s suggested i n G i v l e r ' s purpose: "to determine by means of the expressive method the 82 e f f e c t s produced by the speech elements i n poetry upon both the motor and introspective consciousness" (p. 1). The importance of the author's s t y l e was emphasized by Gi v l e r (although he also describes reader response s t y l e s i n h i s appendix). Of the author, he explains: . . . an elaborate s t a t i s t i c a l record was made . . . of the percentage of frequency of the various l e t t e r sounds i n the leading English poets from Sydney to Rossetti. The basis for t h i s work was the observation of very s t r i k i n g differences i n the acoustic and kinaesthetic sensations aroused by the audible reading of d i f f e r e n t poets, (pp. 1-2) These early experiments use a primordial concept of l i t e r a t u r e not even included i n conventional twentieth- century dictionary d e f i n i t i o n s which s t a r t from p r i n t rather than speech. They explore the mere nonsense sounds of language. 2. Research conceptions of response The response requested i n the Roblee and Washburn (1912) study was subjective and immediate. Upon hearing a s y l l a b l e , the subject was asked to judge i t s "pleasantness" or "unpleasantness" on a scale from one to seven. The reasoning behind t h i s e a r l i e s t experiment i s that: apart from the associative power of words, the sounds which compose them may, by t h e i r own pleasantness or unpleasantness, exert a not inconsiderable influence on t h e i r l i t e r a r y value from an aesthetic viewpoint, (p. 579) G i v l e r ' s study explored the psycho-physiological e f f e c t s "upon both the motor and introspective consciousness" 83 of various vowel sounds i n combination with consonants, as well as single words and tonal patterns of famous poems. Giv l e r worked with f i f t e e n adults, giving them the following d i r e c t i o n s : This i s an experiment upon the psycho-motor e f f e c t of the sounds i n poetry: while you r e c i t e the l i n e , tap at each accented s y l l a b l e ; take your own time to do i t , tap i n a natural way, i n as long or as short strokes as you please: say i t i n a clear voice and then introspect upon the three factors of feeling-tone, sensations and imagery i f a l l three come . . . i t i s the sounds and t h e i r e f f e c t s which you are to attend to. (p. 9-10) G i v l e r remarks that the tendency to make words out of "these meaningless experiments" was "super-strong with nearly a l l of the subjects . . . so that some severe c r i t i c might c a l l t h i s whole work, 'an experiment i n the delayed associations of misspelled words'" (p. 37). Further, i t i s not an impossible assumption that poetry as well as other forms of art may possess i n each of t h e i r leading features, form and content, a s u f f i c i e n c y of emotional wealth to be considered each one as able to arouse the esthetic unconsciousness to the f u l l . (p. 129) In G i v l e r ' s study, the influence of the author's st y l e i s stressed. For example, he ref e r s to the d i s t i n c t i v e "motor pattern and tonal display of such poets as Byron and Keats" (p. 2) and l a t e r observes: " i t would seem that the temperamental character of the poet had gotten into these experiments" (p. 62). As concerns the text-response-reader continuum outlined i n Chapter Three, the focus of these b e h a v i o r i s t i c studies i s on evocative response to textual q u a l i t i e s . The 84 centre of i n t e r e s t i s on the l i t e r a r y q u a l i t y of the sounds and rhythm. The personality of the responder i s subordinated to a reporting of the images evoked by the sounds of language. Thus, even though no conventional forms of l i t e r a t u r e are used, the research begins with an orientation towards textual q u a l i t i e s . There seems to be only a tenuous r e l a t i o n to the p r e v a i l i n g college l i t e r a t u r e focus on p h i l o l o g i c a l and h i s t o r i c a l analysis. IV. So c i e t a l and pedagogical conditions: 1920-29 The prosperous twenties had a slow s t a r t , but soon the r i s e of easy c r e d i t , technological ingenuity, and favourable economic conditions contributed to a long economic boom. New products, such as automobiles, telephones, and radios were suddenly available to a l l . Union memberships and s t r i k e s increased. In Canada i n 1920, the three-party replaced the two-party p o l i t i c a l system. Although unemployment le v e l s reached 16% each winter i n Canada, the years between 1925 and 1928 were generally prosperous (Finlay and Sprague, 1989, p. 335) . In science, the advances i n knowledge and the general l e v e l of technological aptitude increased exponentially. The proposals of p h y s i c i s t s , such as Heisenberg's (1927) uncertainty p r i n c i p l e , continued to challenge common-sense views of c a u s a l i t y and observation. However, these proposals s t i l l seemed to have no e f f e c t on d a i l y concerns. The cl o s i n g 85 year of the decade was marked by the Winnipeg Grain Exchange collapse and the disaster of the stock market on "Black Thursday", October 24, 1929. The Parson (1923) d i s s e r t a t i o n , "A study of adult reading", i s an early survey study.•Although c l a s s i f i e d by Purves and Beach (1972) as a study of "reading interests", i t i s relevant because i t provides a v i v i d personal snapshot of the reading habits and p r i o r i t i e s of the decade: an assertion made nowadays i s to the e f f e c t that the p r i n t i n g press has usurped the place formerly held by the public forum as the most powerful factor i n the molding of public opinion. (Parsons, 1923, p. 1) He observes that hal f of the population of the country was r u r a l and about half was also i l l i t e r a t e . Only 2 out of 105 m i l l i o n people had some college or uni v e r s i t y t r a i n i n g (p. 10). Most adults read newspapers and magazines "primarily for information, or to keep up with what i s happening i n the world. A very few individuals claimed that t h e i r primary reading purpose i s rec r e a t i o n a l " (p. 100). Parsons observes that "there i s reason to believe that the schools are a l l of them eventually going to learn the secret of in t e r e s t i n g t h e i r pupils i n reading" (p. 114). However, Parsons describes a l i b r a r i a n ' s disparagement of readers who "for years have spent p r a c t i c a l l y a l l t h e i r time i n the reading room of t h i s l i b r a r y " (p. 116). F i n a l l y , o r a l reading seems to have been more important than i t i s today: reading aloud has s o c i a l values which many people do not even suspect . . . i t seems p e r f e c t l y evident that o r a l reading must always be taught i n elementary school, f i r s t 86 because i t i s a natural way of introducing the c h i l d to reading and second, because many adults have occasion to read aloud, (p. 97) This study v i v i d l y suggests that there were both s i m i l a r and d i f f e r e n t p r i o r i t i e s about reading at the beginning of the century as compared to today. I t suggests that the p r i o r i t y was on speech rather than on the printed word, as seems to be more common today. In education during the twenties, the Progressive movement was coming to the fore. B e r l i n (1987) points out that "progressivism contained within i t two opposed conceptions of education—one psychological and i n d i v i d u a l i s t i c and the other s o c i a l and communal—which Dewey attempted to reconcile" (p. 60). In addition, he explains that progressivism changed with the times. Before World War I, "the emphasis of the progressives was on s o c i a l reform, on bringing the school closer to serving the needs of society". After the war, there was a s h i f t to a child-centred pedagogy—more s p e c i f i c a l l y , to an i n t e r e s t i n depth psychology and the creative arts, both intended to foster the development of the i n d i v i d u a l without regard for s o c i a l or p r a c t i c a l ends. The focus of t h i s e f f o r t was the c u l t i v a t i o n of the aesthetic c a p a b i l i t i e s of the student i n the i n t e r e s t of bringing about health and sanity. (Berlin, 1987, p. 60) In Canadian u n i v e r s i t i e s during the twenties, undergraduate enrolment rose to a high of about 22,000 i n 1919-20 ( P h i l l i p s , 1957). At the University of B r i t i s h Columbia, the decade began with a sharp r i s e i n r e g i s t r a t i o n as war veterans returned to the campus. Added to the growing 87 number of f u l l - t i m e students were an increasing number of part-time and vocational students (Logan, 1958, p. 98). Logan describes the period on the college campus: the Twenties were a time of feverish a c t i v i t y and high achievement i n every department of undergraduate l i f e . The large number of returned-soldier students brought with them a qu a l i t y of experience and character which impressed i t s e l f i n d e l i b l y on the enti r e l i f e of the University, (p. 99) Harris (1976) observes that during t h i s decade, English was the core subject i n both the arts and science programs at Canadian u n i v e r s i t i e s (p. 247). The l i t e r a t u r e studied was "almost always English l i t e r a t u r e " , with the chief exceptions being a course i n "Canadian-American" l i t e r a t u r e at McGill i n 1907 and one i n Canadian l i t e r a t u r e at Queens i n 1917 (p. 248). Writing s k i l l s were stressed. Harris states that the University of Alberta Calendar of 1911-12 announced that a f t e r r e g i s t r a t i o n , a l l freshmen would be required to write a "theme, the subject to be chosen from a l i s t provided by the Professor". I f i t was not of "average excellence", the student was required to take a non-credit course i n composition (p. 247) . Harris stresses that, unlike American u n i v e r s i t i e s , "there were no courses concentrating s o l e l y or primarily on problems of o r a l and written composition as did the r h e t o r i c course usually prescribed for freshmen i n American colleges at t h i s time" (p. 247). 88 In the area of l i t e r a r y theory, C u l l e r (1988) dates consciousness of c r i t i c i s m as "a s i g n i f i c a n t realm of i n t e l l e c t u a l a c t i v i t y " from the years "following the F i r s t World War" (p. 4): the 1920s generated a l i v e l y c r i t i c i s m and f l o u r i s h i n g c r i t i c a l d e b a t e — c a r r i e d on for the most part outside the u n i v e r s i t i e s . The major academic exception was Irving Babbit, a Harvard professor and spokesman of the New Humanism, which demanded that l i t e r a t u r e contribute to moral enlightenment . . . and celebrated c l a s s i c a l values as the necessary antidote to the moral l a x i t y of the 1920s, (pp. 5-6) A. Research (1920-9): Orientations take shape During the early twenties, the Purves and Beach (1972) bibliography c i t e s s i x studies exploring the responses of college and adult readers (See Appendix 3, Table 2). 1. Research conceptions of " l i t e r a t u r e " The e a r l i e s t study to use published stanzas of l i t e r a t u r e i n natural form i s that of Abbott and Trabue (1921), "A measure of a b i l i t y to judge poetry". Literature was represented by single stanzas from the poetry of Tennyson, Shakespeare, Keats and Milton, as well as excerpts from Mother Goose. The only c r i t e r i o n was that "each specimen have the recognized excellence of i t s type" (p. 102). Wheeler's (1923) "An analysis of l i t e r a r y appreciation" and Valentine's (1923) "The function of images i n the appreciation of poetry" continue t h i s tendency to 89 present better i n l i g h t of poorer poetry. Valentine presented the poetry of Shelley and Wordsworth next to some "poor" poetry such as "a stanza taken from one of some published poems by an acquaintance and a stanza of a poem printed and used for memory experiments" (p. 168-9). Wheeler's concept of the poem, foreshadowing the ideas l a t e r popularized by Rosenblatt, i s that i t i s a l i v i n g whole, a "true duration", rhythm being i n t r i n s i c to i t s value (p. 238) . Works used i n Wheeler's experiment include parts of poems by Shelley and Gray. June Downey's 1928 study continued the trend started by psychologists i n the previous decade and used as " l i t e r a t u r e " one hundred nouns and adjectives typed separately on small squares of paper. I.A. Richards•(1929) experiment uses a vari e t y of poems, a "mixed l o t " from D. H. Lawrence through Donne, Hardy and Longfellow. Thus the l i t e r a t u r e , i n research of the twenties, i s predominantly poetry. 2. Research conceptions of response Conceptions of response i n t h i s decade include a focus on judgments of qu a l i t y and images evoked by the poetry (See Table 2). The response i s often i n the form of written multiple choice or short answers. As well, the Richards study requests free written response. In the research of t h i s decade, as compared to that of the previous, the subjects 90 were allowed more time for deliberation. For example, i n Valentine's (1923) experiment, unive r s i t y students, hearing a poem read aloud twice by the experimenter, were to write "whether they found the poem pleasing, s l i g h t l y pleasing, etc., [and] the reasons for t h e i r judgment" (p. 169). In Wheeler's (192 3) experiment, note was to be taken of "the images that occurred naturally" while students s i l e n t l y read through a short poem (Wheeler, 1923, p. 233). Valentine (1923) pointed out the common emphasis of both the psychologist and the c r i t i c : "both the psychologist and the c r i t i c are r e a l l y concerned with the r e l a t i o n s h i p of the work of a r t to the appreciator" (166). However, he ends by stres s i n g the difference of each perspective: a l l t h i s granted however, we must admit that the c r i t i c moves hi s attention from t h i s aesthetic experience towards the objective study of the poem, while the psychologist proceeds with the analysis of the experience. The psychologist's aim i s understanding of process, (p. 166) Abbott and Trabue (1921), i n t h e i r study, seek to "devise an objective t e s t of independent c r i t i c a l judgment applied to specimens of the art previously unknown". That i s , they assume that q u a l i t y can be determined by the reader on textual grounds alone. This i s done i n order to shed l i g h t upon: the degree of success attained i n developing the power to appreciate; on the teacher's possession or lack of t h i s ppwer; possibly on the elements of the art i t s e l f that may p r o f i t a b l y receive attention with pupils of a p a r t i c u l a r grade, (p. 101) 91 The t e s t here was to read four stanzas of varying q u a l i t y (consisting of sentimental, prosaic and metrical a l t e r a t i o n s as well as the ' o r i g i n a l ' version) and designate the best and the worst on the page, judged "by whatever makes i t seem better poetry to you" (p. 105, emphasis i n o r i g i n a l ) . Even though the d i r e c t i o n s seem to personalize, the aim i s to explore "the degree of success . . . i n developing the power to appreciate". I t was thus a t e s t requiring recognition of the "best" or o r i g i n a l . This concept i s far from the idea of the reader as creator of beauty. Psychologist June Downey (1928 and 1929) reports on experiments which explore subjective r e f l e c t i o n s , both immediate and extended. Her Creative Imagination (1929) includes descriptions of experiments on such topics as "audible thought", "the poetry of colour" and " l i t e r a r y s e l f - p r ojection" by which i s meant "projection of the s e l f into an imaginal scene which i s i l l u s t r a t i v e of poetic or f i c t i o n a l content" (p. 186), as well as a writer's stream-of- consciousness report of his creating of a work. Squire (1969) points out that i n t h i s work, Downey presents: a threefold c l a s s i f i c a t i o n of responses: the e c s t a t i c , where the self-conscious reader i s merged with the subject that he i s enjoying; the p a r t i c i p a t o r , where the reader assumes one personality a f t e r another; and the spectator, who i s detached from the action and evaluates as an observer, (p. 468) Squire also stresses Downey's acknowledgment of the importance of the textual q u a l i t i e s . She "hypothesized that the type and content of the l i t e r a r y s e l e c t i o n affected the mode of response" (p. 468). In t h i s work, however, the o v e r a l l emphasis i s on the creative and appreciative processes, with an attention to i n d i v i d u a l differences. The approach of the l i t e r a r y t h e o r i s t , I.A. Richards (1929), also takes into account the moment of response. The experiment, reported i n h i s P r a c t i c a l C r i t i c i s m (1929), explored the reactions of college honors English students, "the best and brightest readers" (p. 310). Being concerned about the q u a l i t y of Cambridge undergraduate education which emphasized the value of c r i t i c s ' opinions rather than d i r e c t reading of poetry, he gave his students a va r i e t y of anonymous poems. The d i r e c t i o n was to "comment f r e e l y upon them" i n writing. The duration of the response was to consist of: a number of perusals made at one session provided that they aroused and sustained one single growing response to the poem, or al t e r n a t e l y led to no response at a l l and l e f t the reader with nothing but the bare words before him on the paper, (p. 4) This conception of response was a marked contrast to the immediate free associations i n many of the psychological experiments. In addition, t h i s i s also the f i r s t study to mention a teaching experience r e s u l t i n g from the experiment: "I lectured the following week p a r t l y upon the poems, but rather more upon the comments, or protocols, as I c a l l them" (p. 4). Thus, Richards' method of i n s t r u c t i o n seems decidedly to focus on the responses of the students. In his explanation of the r e s u l t s , however, Richards reveals a text- rather than reader-orientation to response. He comments on the deplorable lack of even simple reading a b i l i t y , or a b i l i t y to understand the poem as a statement or expression, as well as other d e f i c i e n c i e s : (1) deriving sensuous apprehension concerning the form of the poem; (2) understanding images; (3) being distracted by mnemonic irrelevances; (4) giving stock responses; (5) being sentimental; (6) being i n h i b i t e d ; (7) d o c t r i n a l adhesions; (8) technical presuppositions; and (9) general c r i t i c a l preconceptions, (pp. 13-17) His dismay suggests that he was hoping for something better. He had hoped that the reader would be able to dis t i n g u i s h , on textual grounds alone, the "better" poems. A second reason for disappointment was that his d i r e c t i o n to "comment f r e e l y i n writing" was not interpreted by h i s readers as a request for a thoughtful, defensible analysis. His f r u s t r a t i o n , however, i s not only over the d e f i c i e n c i e s i n these few readers. I t i s a f a i l i n g which he sees i n a l l r e a l readers. "Candidly", he points out, "how many of us are convinced, with reason, that we would have made a better showing ourselves under these conditions?" (p. 310). Perhaps a l l readers are doomed to such f a i l u r e . The influence of Richards' experiment was longstanding. A f u l l forty-two years l a t e r , Cooper (1971) describes i t "as the c l a s s i c analysis of the d i f f i c u l t i e s and stumblings and misreadings of p r a c t i c a l c r i t i c s to poetry" (p. 2 0). He adds, however, that " f u l l of good sense as i t i s , hi s (Richards') report throughout has a tone of peevish and impatient d i s b e l i e f " (p. 20). As i n the experiments of the previous decacle, the poet i s not forgotten i n the experiments of the twenties. For example, Valentine i s inspired to t r y an experiment on imagery, not because of an observation of some reader, but because his attention i s caught by a c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of a poet: "Wordsworth's frequent references to h i s own intense enjoyment gained from v i s u a l imagery" (p. 167). June Downey (1928) speaks of the natural word-consciousness "of the l i t e r a r y a r t i s t who i n t h i s respect may be sophisticated from the cradle" (p. 323) . The fact that these observations are made by psychologists suggests a perception of meaning and beauty as somehow res i d i n g i n the external r e a l i t y of the text i t s e l f . F i n a l l y , i t i s important to note that even at t h i s early date i n research with l i t e r a r y response, there i s mention of the f a c i l i t a t i v e e f f e c t of writing even though i t i s made r e f e r e n t i a l to a greater appreciation of the a r t i s t ' s work, rather than the reader's understanding of i t : the appreciation of the work of a great a r t i s t may ins p i r e the student to a f u l l e r creative expression of himself: and conversely, his attempts at expression i n the same medium, however imperfect these may be, may in t e n s i f y h is understanding and enjoyment of the master's a r t . (Wheeler, 1923, p. 230) 95 Thus research of the twenties brings to l i g h t the contrasting text- and reader-orientations of response to l i t e r a t u r e . The Downey (1929) and Richards (1929) works, Creative Imagination and P r a c t i c a l C r i t i c i s m respectively, represent the d i f f e r e n t perspectives of the reader-oriented psychologist and the text-oriented c r i t i c - t e a c h e r concerning the emphasis toward the reader or the text i n the l i t e r a r y transaction. There i s much common ground. Both text-oriented and reader-oriented researchers focus on the moment of the transaction between l i t e r a r y work and reader. Both at t h i s e arly stage have an i m p l i c i t respect for the writer. As well, there i s a common intere s t i n image formation and i t s r e l a t i o n to appreciation. Thus, although there i s a general weighing towards text or reader i n the work of the c r i t i c - teacher or the psychologist respectively, there are also important s i m i l a r i t i e s . Despite the influence of the Progressive movement i n education, the many respectful mentions of authors and poets, as well as the omission of any more than a cursory des c r i p t i o n of the readers, suggest a general research tendency towards a text- rather than reader-oriented view of response. V. S o c i a l and pedagogical conditions: 1930-9 Worldwide economic depression, international bankruptcies and unemployment characterized the t h i r t i e s . By 1930, unemployment, with farmers among the hardest h i t , was greater than during the "hard times of 1921-22" (Finlay and Sprague, 1989, p. 336). "Harder times" continued throughout the decade i n both Canada arid the United States (Finlay and Sprague, 1989, p. 336). By 1932, there were twelve m i l l i o n unemployed i n the United States and public work programs were v i t i a t e d by deflationary budget balancing. During the decade both the Canadian and United States governments embarked on programs of s o c i a l reform and economic stimulation, including protection for labour unions, s o c i a l security, public works, wages and hours laws, and assistance to farmers. Although "representing a mere 3 per cent of college- aged youth." (Axelrod 1989, p. 216), f u l l - t i m e u n i v e r s i t y enrolment i n 1930-1 had increased to 34,119 as compared to 23,418 i n 1920-1 (Harris 1976, p. 352). Axelrod (1989) describes the t y p i c a l student as "the c h i l d of a merchant or a teacher for whom univers i t y was f i r s t and foremost a stepping-stone to a more secure professional career" (p. 223). Harris (1976) explains the e f f e c t s on higher education of the "Conference on Canadian-American a f f a i r s " at the end of the decade, i n 1939, as being threefold: 1) the emergence of economics, history, and p o l i t i c a l science as academic d i s c i p l i n e s of central importance; 97 2) the recognition by government of the professor as expert; and 3) the involvement of Canadian professors i n large-scale research projects, (p. 339) He also acknowledges the generous assistance given to Canadian higher education during the 1920s and 1930s by the Carnegie Corporation of New York and other American philanthropic i n s t i t u t i o n s (Harris 1976, p. 352). Logan (1958) describes the s i t u a t i o n at the University of B r i t i s h Columbia during the t h i r t i e s : As the depression came, the interests of the students widened and deepened with t h e i r attention focused, f i r s t , on the serious s o c i a l problems of the depression, then on the steady d r i f t toward war. And through i t a l l ran the constant theme of student e f f o r t — t o improve the University, (p. 132) Horowitz (1987) makes a s i m i l a r observation of l i f e on campuses i n the United States: The Depression brought a marked change i n college atmosphere. Not only were fewer students able to afford Greek l i f e ; many more worried about l i f e a f t e r college. Observers noted a new seriousness of purpose and maturity among college students, (p. 114) During the t h i r t i e s , the influence of the New C r i t i c s was only just beginning to be f e l t i n u n i v e r s i t i e s . In the theory of New C r i t i c i s m , as explained i n Chapter Three, poems were treated as "aesthetic objects rather than h i s t o r i c a l documents . . . the New C r i t i c i s m sought to show the contribution of each element of poetic form to a u n i f i e d structure" (Culler, 1988, p. 10). During the t h i r t i e s , however, C u l l e r points out that the New C r i t i c i s m "seemed 98 public rather than academic c r i t i c i s m " i n i t s challenge of "the h i s t o r i c a l scholarship of the u n i v e r s i t i e s " (p. 10). Towards the end of the decade, i n the year 1938, Louise Rosenblatt's Literature as exploration was published. In t h i s work, without e x p l i c i t l y using the word "transactional", she provided a model for a new kind of reading. F a r r e l l (1990) explains that t h i s work was "regarded as the f i r s t book i n t h i s country to advance a reader- response theory of l i t e r a t u r e " (p. i x ) . F a r r e l l summarizes just a few of the points made by the work. The f i r s t was that although "students should be allowed to express f r e e l y t h e i r reactions to a s e l e c t i o n i n both writing and class discussions . . . the text must remain a constraint against t o t a l r e l a t i v i s m or s u b j e c t i v i t y " (p. x). The second was that " l i t e r a t u r e has s o c i a l and aesthetic elements . . . that are i n e x t r i c a b l y i n t e r r e l a t e d , though t h e o r e t i c a l l y distinguishable". The t h i r d point was that "the essence of l i t e r a t u r e i s the r e j e c t i o n of stereotyped reactions" (p. x). The fourth concerned the r e l a t i o n of l i t e r a t u r e to the task of education. Literature helped "provide students with the knowledge, mental habits and motivation that w i l l enable them to solve t h e i r own problems independently" by such means as freeing students from provincialism, r e d i r e c t i n g " t h e i r p o t e n t i a l l y a n t i s o c i a l behavior" and fostering t h e i r imagination. F i n a l l y , the book proposed that students should be provided with a broad range of l i t e r a t u r e , including works from d i f f e r e n t cultures. ( F a r r e l l , 1990, p. x i ) . Correcting the common misconception that the work did not o r i g i n a l l y receive i t s due recognition, Rosenblatt (1990) describes the " s u r p r i s i n g l y wide favourable response" of the book i n 1938. This was largely because of the "strength of the progressive current i n educational thinking" at the time (p. 101). A. Research (1930-9): aesthetics and appreciation Despite the Depression, the number of studies exploring the responses of college students and adults to l i t e r a t u r e increased from s i x during the twenties to twelve during the t h i r t i e s (See Appendix 3, Table 3). 1. Research conceptions of l i t e r a t u r e The concept " l i t e r a t u r e " i s represented by a wide range of materials. There are the sounds and rhythm of poetry devoid of meaning (Hevner, 1937), fragments of poetry (Howells and Johnson, 1932; Leopold, 1933; C a r r o l l , 1933; Moran, 1935; Pickford, 1935a and b; Rigg, 1937; and Patrick, 1939) or prose (Broom, 1934; Pickford, 1935a and b), and novels (Foster, 1936). Moran (1935) states e x p l i c i t l y that the meaning of " l i t e r a t u r e " to which she refers i s not " a l l printed or written matter upon any theme". Instead the word connotes: 100 one of the fi n e arts whose f i e l d i s primarily the attitudes, moods, emotions of the human being; "whose immediate purpose i s pleasure, enjoyment through be a u t i f u l embodiment . . . whose sole excuse for being i s leading of the i n d i v i d u a l man into sympathetic p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n the eternal v e r i t i e s of l i f e . . . (p. 139-40) C a r r o l l (1933) explains his c r i t e r i a i n h i s s e l e c t i o n of l i t e r a t u r e : . . . the f i r s t choice being an excerpt from a book by an author of established fame, the second choice an excerpt from a book by a writer generally considered as second- rate, the t h i r d choice an excerpt from a story found i n one of the less l i t e r a r y magazines, and the fourth choice a mutilation, (p. 469) The l i t e r a t u r e used i n these experiments has fixed, i n t r i n s i c q u a l i t i e s . Genuine poems are presented with weakened versions ( C a r r o l l , 1933; Leopold, 1933; Rigg, 1937; Patrick, 1939). Patrick (1939) distinguishes between poems "of outstanding authors" and those written "by authors who e n t i r e l y lacked poetic t a l e n t " (p. 255). However, i n the preliminary t r i a l of Riggs 1 (1937) experiment, several of the parodies are judged by the experts to be better than the o r i g i n a l s , and thus must be eliminated from the f i n a l t e s t (pp. 149-50). Examples of s p e c i f i c works used i n these experiments are as follows: 100-300 word fragments from such works as Shelley's "Defense of Poetry", Proust's Swann's Way. G. J. Romanes' Animal i n t e l l i g e n c e , A. N. Whitehead's The concept of nature and Tolstoy's War and Peace ( a l l used i n Pickford, 1935a and b); parts of Conrad's The Rescue, and D. H. 101 Lawrence's Sons and Lovers (Broom, 1933); and single stanzas of poetry from the work of Tennyson, Keats, Coleridge, Chaucer and Milton (Moran, 193 5). 2. Research conceptions of response a. Text-orientations F u l l y ten out of twelve (83%) of these studies focus on textual q u a l i t y as a fixed aspect. Researchers explore issues such as "metresense i n poetry" (Howells and Johnson, 1932), "the e f f e c t of creative work on aesthetic appreciation" (Leopold, 1933), and "the factors involved in learning to appreciate l i t e r a t u r e " (Smith, 193 3). Moran (1935) attempts to construct tests to "measure ce r t a i n poetry aptitudes of teachers". Patrick (1939) explores responses to good and poor poetry "with a view to ascertain i f good poetry stimulates the imagination and produces more mental a c t i v i t y " (254). C a r r o l l (1933) explores the question of whether g i r l s have a s u p e r i o r i t y over, not mere difference from, males in. the area of appreciation of l i t e r a t u r e , as they seem to have i n the area of general l i n g u i s t i c a b i l i t y . In most of the studies, the importance of enhancing, evaluating and exploring appreciation i s emphasized. This appreciation i s perceived as being dependent on text- i n t r i n s i c rather than reader-created q u a l i t i e s : appreciation rests upon discrimination—upon the a b i l i t y to d i f f e r e n t i a t e the good from the less good and the less good from the very bad. The man who does not recognize 102 good prose when he sees i t can hardly be said to possess marked appreciative a b i l i t y . ( C a r r o l l , 1933, p. 469) Further, Leopold (1933) suggests that t h i s i s not a democratic a b i l i t y , accessible to a l l : nowhere are individuals more sharply d i f f e r e n t i a t e d than in t h e i r p o s s i b i l i t i e s of response to aesthetic impressions. To some few poetry makes no sort of appeal and, i n spite of the labours of the school throughout the most p l a s t i c years of t h e i r l i f e , they w i l l never seek pleasure i n reading verse, (p. 59) As concerns s p e c i f i c purposes of the experiments, Howells and Johnson (1932) want to "develop a measure of a b i l i t y to discriminate between types of metre i n poetry and . . . to discover the components and concomitants of t h i s a b i l i t y " (pp. 539-40). Leopold (1933) stresses that "the r e a l , important r e s u l t i s the increase . . . i n the appreciation of good l i t e r a t u r e " (p. 43). Thus the emphasis, i n these research purposes, i s on the text q u a l i t y as the fixed standard by which to measure the response. Responder tasks emphasize the formal elements and i n t r i n s i c q u a l i t y of l i t e r a t u r e . Howells and Johnson (1932) ask t h e i r subjects to observe "a sample l i n e of poetry and then i d e n t i f y , out of a l i s t of four subsequent l i n e s , the one that corresponded most cl o s e l y with the rhythm or metre of the sample" (p. 540). Leopold (1933) and Riggs (1937) ask t h e i r subjects to i d e n t i f y the o r i g i n a l or best stanza when i t i s presented with "weakened" versions. C a r r o l l (193 3) also asks h i s subjects to judge the l i t e r a r y merit of short 103 paragraphs which are presented along with version which include weakened images and epithets. Leopold (193 3), i n the f i r s t classroom treatment study, explores "the e f f e c t s of creative work on aesthetic appreciation". The implication i s that creative work i s useful only as i t improves the a b i l i t y to appreciate or i d e n t i f y the o r i g i n a l or best version when presented among parodies. She proposes that i n s t r u c t i o n i n the writing of poetry w i l l improve appreciation. She gives the experimental group exercises i n s p e c i f i c techniques. These include exercises with rhyme, "such as finding as many words as possible to rhyme with a given word or completing a couplet by adding the rhyming word" (p. 45). Another exercise i s concerned with matching l i n e s : "the f i r s t l i n e of a couplet i s given, the second supplied by the student" (p. 45). A t h i r d exercise i s concerned with figures of speech: "finding similes and metaphors, writing paragraphs or stanzas personifying t h i s and that, or giving a description of place or person or scene" (p. 46). F i n a l l y , i n order to tes t the effectiveness of t h i s creative work, the students are asked to i d e n t i f y the o r i g i n a l or best stanza of poetry, when i t i s presented among i t s parodies. b. Reader-orientations Reader-oriented studies, which focus on the reader rather than elements of the text, are represented by only one 104 of the studies with adult or college readers i n t h i s decade, that of Foster (1936) who surveys general adult f i c t i o n i n t e r e s t s . Her a r t i c l e , "An approach to f i c t i o n through the c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of i t s readers", i s concerned with the s o c i a l aspects of reading. Her report begins with the observation that the aesthetic assumption rests: fundamentally on the conception of l i t e r a t u r e as an art, whereas the great mass of popular f i c t i o n i s written—and r e a d — f o r reasons other than i t s l i t e r a r y value and receives comparatively l i t t l e serious c r i t i c a l attention, (p. 125) Thus, her study r e j e c t s the importance of being able to c o r r e c t l y i d e n t i f y textual q u a l i t y and proposes instead an exploration of what r e a l readers choose to read for enjoyment. She uses l i b r a r y records as indicators of popularity of authors i n her exploration of the reading habits of a sample of 15,285 readers i n Chicago 1. c. Response-orientations Response-centred orientations, focusing on the process of the developing response, begin with the psychological study of Pickford (1935a and b). This study e x p l i c i t l y acknowledges the influence of B a r t l e t t (Pickford, 1935b, p. 57), who had made such important contributions to the area of The f a v o r i t e authors were also, i n t e r e s t i n g l y , those most read by farm women i n the M i s s i s s i p p i Valley; by college students reporting from a l l parts of the United States; and by Canadian farmers i n the Fraser Valley, B r i t i s h Columbia (Foster, 1936, p. 126) . 105 schema theory. Like the work of B a r t l e t t i n psychology, many of the questions and conceptions of t h i s research study w i l l remain neglected u n t i l the seventies. Pickford's study aims to explore "the 'high l e v e l ' character i n the reading of continuous meaningful material" (p. 28). He acknowledges that "the r e s u l t s of an experiment depend only p a r t l y on the immediate conditions; i n part also they depend on the mental factors which a subject brings with him to the task" (p. 419). He asks his subjects, a l l of whom were "well known to the experimenter" (p. 418) "to report, a f t e r reading ( f i r s t s i l e n t l y and then aloud), upon hi s psychological reactions both during the reading and on i t s completion" (p. 418) . He wanted to explore the general tendencies, attitudes and attention of the reader. In the unconditional acceptance of and inte r e s t i n the v a r i e t i e s of response processes of his readers, Pickford's study also has strong psychoanalytic elements. However, the i n t e r e s t i n the personality of the reader, which characterizes reader- orientations, i s subordinated to that i n the developing response i t s e l f : a reader also tends to impose h i s own rhythm on reading matter, whether he reads aloud or s i l e n t l y , and the r e s u l t of these two rhythmic influences i s the rhythm of reading . . . such rhythm i s . . . a swing or flow of apprehension and vocal or subvocal movement, (p. 421) Pickford describes the responses under the general categories of a f f e c t i v e and cognitive tendencies. Under " a f f e c t i v e tendencies", he distinguishes between feel i n g s 106 'of 1, "where the reference i s d e f i n i t e l y subjective", and feelings 'that', "where an objective reference i s involved" (p. 425). Pickford's focus i s on the process of coming to understand. As such, he observes the transformation of "painful feelings . . . into pleasure as the reading proceeds" (p. 427). This experiment i s unique i n another respect. Amidst the seriousness of a l l t h i s "work" of appreciating the aesthetics of these fragments of l i t e r a r y text, "feelings of amusement, and actual laughter, are very common i n reading": Frequently the amusement i s a response to an intended joke i n the l i t e r a r y matter, but more often amusement occurred i n reading what was intended to be e n t i r e l y serious, (p. 431) Often, i n the reading of obviously serious works, his "reader's interpretation automatically turns the passage (on Emperor Augustus) into a joke" (p. 432). This misreading i s interpreted as a "defence mechanism acting against the d i f f i c u l t i e s encountered" (p. 432). However, on the same page, Pickford comments that, "amusement not only saves discomfort, but enables (in t h i s case) the reader to make a sound inte r p r e t a t i o n of something which might have disturbed him" (p. 432). This experiment also proposes that another type of pleasure i s important i n response to l i t e r a t u r e : that of the evocation through reading of personal memories which are of private s i g n i f i c a n c e to the reader. Pickford elaborates on the sources of t h i s personal, rather than 107 shared pleasure: the f i r s t (pleasure) i s the r e c a l l of memories themselves pleasant; the second i s the pleasure of completion . . . which arises when the passage i s f u l l y and adequately interpreted by the integration of these very memories, by t h e i r s a t i s f a c t o r y constructive use i n the reading, (p. 429) The overriding assumption suggested i n t h i s experiment i s that response to l i t e r a t u r e includes a l l except ph y s i o l o g i c a l changes induced by the text. Pickford examines personal digressions, the po s i t i v e e f f e c t s of misunderstanding, and even laughter i t s e l f i n a way which w i l l never again be taken up i n the research. In studies of the t h i r t i e s , as i n those of the twenties, there i s e x p l i c i t respect for the poet himself. Hevner (1937) says that the poet i s : hypersensitive to language sounds . . . He can comprehend the progress and the digressions of the thoughts as they are c a r r i e d by the sounds i n much the same way that the layman i s able to apprehend the two d i f f e r e n t but simultaneous processes i n song—the words and the music, (p. 418-9) Foster (1936) uses authors rather than t i t l e s or genres as the units to be used i n her survey. She concludes with a proposed hierarchy of writers. At the top are those l i k e Hardy, Conrad and Anatole France, who i l l u s t r a t e : t r u t h to human character and experience, gravity and breadth of theme, a freshness of insight which adds to the sum of human understanding, detachment without loss of emotional intensity, and beauty of expression, (p. 140) 108 A t h i r d example of the expressed importance of the author i s provided by Moran (193 5). For her t e s t of poetry aptitudes, she proposes the responses of poets and l i t e r a r y 2 c r i t i c s as a v i r t u a l l y "absolute c r i t e r i o n " . This consideration of the poet's response i t s e l f as ultimate c r i t e r i o n i n a t e s t of appreciation of l i t e r a t u r e reinforces the suggestion of the perceived su p e r i o r i t y of the author's l i t e r a r y work over the reader's response to i t . The dominant orientation i n research of the t h i r t i e s i s thus towards the text. Other strands include a single reader-oriented survey study, and a single response-oriented study. The text-oriented studies use poetry fragments written by well-established poets and authors. The reader- and response-oriented studies use recreational reading novels and short l i t e r a r y passages, respectively. There i s some correspondence between the predominant research emphasis on t e x t u a l - q u a l i t i e s and the New C r i t i c i s m , which i s beginning Several writers respond p o s i t i v e l y to her written request to take the t e s t . However, others object. John Masefield writes that " i n my opinion the questionnaires submitted are s u f f i c i e n t to destroy any pleasure which the poems quoted might give" (p. 189). John Erskine r e p l i e s : I do not believe i n the value of t h i s sort of t e s t . There i s no standard by which we can measure the answers . . . I believe the r i g h t method for teaching poetry . . . i s to suggest to the student those experiences i n l i f e which he must have before he can understand the poem. The problem i s to get behind the poem into the l i g h t which produced i t rather than to t r y to measure i t s e f f e c t s on the reader. Those fa c t s , i t seems to me, would be i n f i n i t e l y varied and need not be tabulated, (p. 160) to be popular outside univ e r s i t y c i r c l e s . 109 VI. S o c i a l and pedagogical conditions: 1940-9 The decade opened with war i n Europe and A s i a - P a c i f i c . F o r t y - f i v e m i l l i o n people l o s t t h e i r l i v e s i n the war. This t o l l would l a t e r reveal the deaths of s i x m i l l i o n Jews i n Nazi murder camps. The end of the war brought Western fears of Soviet advances. Along with a general move towards conservatism, the Cold War began.. In addition, because wartime taxes had reduced the largest incomes, there was a major r e d i s t r i b u t i o n of wealth. Veterans wanted a l i f e that was good i n material things (Button and Provenzo, 1989, p. 185). In both Canada and the United States, b i r t h rates climbed and veterans flocked to the campuses i n droves (Button and Provenzo, 1989, p. 257). P h i l l i p s (1957) points out that, due i n large measure to the i n f l u x of returning war veterans, Canadian university enrolment reached a peak of 79,000 i n 1947-8. At the University of B r i t i s h Columbia, Logan (1958) observes that the impact of t h i s war on Canadian un i v e r s i t y students was very d i f f e r e n t from that of World War I. The suggestion was that college education was now considered important to the future welfare of the country. At the opening of the 1939 session, students were advised by both the University and the National Research Council to continue t h e i r studies and "remain at t h e i r u n i v e r s i t y work u n t i l graduation" (Logan, p. 110 138). Nonetheless, a year l a t e r , President Klinck reported that: Notwithstanding the strong recommendation of the Department of Labour that University students continue t h e i r studies u n t i l a f t e r graduation, s i x hundred members of the COTC (Canadian O f f i c e r s Training Corps) volunteered and were accepted for Active Service. (Logan, p. 144) During the war, the University underwent major expansion, as evidenced most e x p l i c i t l y by the growth of the extension department, which "extended the University u n t i l i t reached almost every corner of B r i t i s h Columbia" (Logan, p. 176) . After the war, student population at the University of B r i t i s h Columbia rose dramatically, from approximately 3,000 in 1944-45 to over 9,000 in 1947-48" (Logan, p. 176). Logan provides a description of t h i s overcrowding which characterized the majority of North American campuses during these years. In 1945-6, he explains that lack of classroom space necessitated the use of huts for lectures. These huts had been used only a few weeks e a r l i e r by Army and A i r Force personnel. Logan c i t e s Dean C u r t i s 1 s description of a " t y p i c a l scene" during the post-war days: . . . on a late October afternoon, Dean Buchanan and I were s i t t i n g i n h i s o f f i c e working out some academic d e t a i l s , when the Dean, most beloved and h e l p f u l of men, l e t a smile f l i c k e r over his face and, looking out of his window, said: "Forgive me for interrupting but you may be interested; there i s the Law School going by, along the Mall". I t was. Two huts, being laboriously hauled along on t r a c t o r - t r a i l e r s , were to be the f i r s t home of the men of Law on the campus, (p. 178) I l l For better or worse, t h i s c h a r a c t e r i s t i c university expansion was to continue throughout the ensuing decades. Logan hypothesizes that "perhaps the greatest single impetus behind the enlarging of academic f i e l d s was the growing desire of a l l classes i n the community to have t h e i r children attend the University" (p. 156). As concerns the u n i v e r s i t y English curriculum during the f o r t i e s , Harris (1976) points out that on Canadian campuses: by 1940, English was not only the central d i s c i p l i n e i n the humanities but as well i n the u n i v e r s i t y as a whole, the one subject which students i n a l l f i r s t degree programs, including those i n French-language i n s t i t u t i o n s , were required to take. (p. 384) Louise Rosenblatt continued to be an important influence, following the publication of her work, Literature as exploration i n 1938. She was i n v i t e d to speak at NCTE in New York and i n 1946 was asked to edit an issue of the English Journal, "devoted to furthering the concept of c u l t u r a l pluralism set f o r t h i n Literature and exploration" (p. 102). She points out that my differences with the formalists, or my urging of a d i f f e r e n t idea of the reading process from the theory being taught by reading experts i n my own School of Education, simply acted as stimulants to further thought and writing and served as the basis for a continuing and sometimes e f f e c t i v e c r i t i c i s m of dominant practices, (p. 103) Despite t h i s recognition of her work, Rosenblatt points out that the post World War II period recorded "the 112 capture of English departments i n the colleges by the formal and e l i t i s t New C r i t i c i s m " (p. 102). C u l l e r (1988) also dates the influence of New C r i t i c i s m i n the classroom as beginning with the publication i n 1938 of Brooks and Warren's Understanding Poetry, "which focused attention on the language of poems and showed how metaphor, tone and ambiguity should be analyzed i n the classroom". C u l l e r describes "the pedagogical success of t h i s volume, which taught two generations of students how to read" (p. 11). Gerber (1967) also attributes the r i s e of New C r i t i c i s m i n college classrooms largely to the influence of Brooks and Warren's Understanding Poetry i n 1938, followed by Understanding drama i n 1948 and Understanding f i c t i o n i n 1959. He suggests that "no set of texts has ever been so i n f l u e n t i a l i n the college classroom . . . i t forced the student to attend to the work i t s e l f instead of i t s h i s t o r i c a l matrix" as well as "such r e l a t i v e l y unexpected elements as point of view" (p. 3 54). The emphasis on New C r i t i c i s m also had c u r r i c u l a r ramifications i n that "survey courses tended to give way to master works courses. Period courses often became less popular than genre courses" (Gerber, 1967, p. 354). However, Culler (1988) modifies t h i s perception: Introductory courses employing Understanding Poetry might avoid h i s t o r i c a l considerations and t r a i n students to t r e a t poems as eternal a r t i f a c t s rather than datable documents, but advanced courses divided l i t e r a t u r e according to periods . . . Graduate students, i n p a r t i c u l a r , had to claim expertise i n a h i s t o r i c a l period, since jobs were customarily defined i n t h i s way: an opening " i n the Renaissance" or " i n the eighteenth century", (p. 13) Thus although New C r i t i c i s m was popular, i t was not without i t s c r i t i c s and modifying influences. Rosenblatt (1990) stresses that during the f o r t i e s , there was also an important progressive movement geared to help students "to develop t h e i r capacities to the f u l l , a view of education assuming a democratically mobile society" (p. 102) . Towards the end of the decade, i n his 1948 P r e s i d e n t i a l Address to the Modern Language Association, Douglas Bush (1949) attacked the New C r i t i c i s m for i t s "aloof i n t e l l e c t u a l i t y " , i t s "avoidance of moral values" and i t s r e j e c t i o n of the common reader, who s t i l l thinks that "poetry deals with l i f e " (p. 20) . A. Research (1940-9): Peak of d i v e r s i t y i n conceptions The Second World War, unlike the F i r s t , seems to have had an important impact on research conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e . The awareness of propaganda during the war was perhaps part of the reason for the unparalleled d i v e r s i t y of research conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e . During t h i s decade, no fewer than twenty-three studies explored the responses of college and adult readers. This number compared with only twelve studies i n the t h i r t i e s , s i x i n the twenties, and two published before 1920. 114 1. Research conceptions of l i t e r a t u r e The research conception of l i t e r a t u r e i n the f o r t i e s was e x t r a o r d i n a r i l y diverse. No fewer than t h i r t e e n d i f f e r e n t genres were used i n the twenty-three studies. The range included: 1) single words (Bruner and Postman, 1947; Postman, Bruner and McGinnies, 1948); 2) newspaper a r t i c l e s (Waples, Berelson and Bradshaw, 1940; Strang, 1942; Berelson, 1945; and Gray, 1947); 3) magazines and books (Strang, 1942); 4) o r a l s t o r i e s from other cultures (Hallowell, 1947); 5) comprehension te s t items (Davis, 1944); 6) f u l l - l e n g t h novels and f a i r y t a l e s (Shrodes, 1949; Lazarfeld, 1949); 7) a researcher-devised story (Wolfenstein, 1946); and, f i n a l l y , 8) fragments of larger works (Harris, 1946; Michael, Rosenthal and DeCamp, 1949). Chester Harris (1946) o f f e r s one of the e a r l i e s t e x p l i c i t research d e f i n i t i o n s of l i t e r a t u r e as including "writings that are characterized at least i n part by excellence as determined by incl u s i o n i n a c r i t i c a l anthology" (p. 14) 3. S p e c i f i c examples of works used included poems such as Shelley's " P o l i t i c a l greatness", Swinburne's "Love and sleep", and Thomas Hardy's "To L i f e " (Glicksberg, 1944). These were more often than not compared with lesser works. In This c r i t e r i a for i d e n t i f y i n g " l i t e r a t u r e " remains important throughout the research, e s p e c i a l l y during the seventies and eigh t i e s when v i r t u a l l y a l l of the short s t o r i e s used i n experiments can be found i n anthologies. addition, there were fragments from Robert Browning's "Fame", Shakespeare's The Tempest and Frances Bourdillon's "The night has a thousand eyes" (Harris, 1946). Also representing " l i t e r a t u r e " were descriptive prose paragraphs ( f i v e written by one of the researchers i n Michael, Rosenthal and DeCamp, 1949) as well as prose fragments used on reading tests (Davis, 1944; and White, 1947). F i n a l l y , Vegara (1946) includes the use of complete poems, regardless of length. The research conception of l i t e r a t u r e i n t h i s decade, as i n the f i r s t decade of research, expands beyond dictionary meanings of the word which specify the c r i t e r i o n of printed matter. Hallowell (1947) includes o r a l l i t e r a t u r e as well. In his work with the Ojibwa, he emphasizes that "with the r i s e and development of anthropology, i t soon became a commonplace that a l l peoples had an o r a l l i t e r a t u r e " (p. 545). Thus, research conceptions of l i t e r a t u r e during the f o r t i e s extended from those of the t h i r t i e s to include fragments used i n tests of comprehension as well as newspapers, magazines, and o r a l s t o r i e s of d i f f e r e n t cultures. This d i v e r s i t y was also p a r a l l e l e d i n conceptions of response. 2. Research conceptions of response This decade exemplifies an extreme d i v e r s i t y of conceptions of response as well as l i t e r a t u r e . F i f t e e n (65%) of the studies focus on the reader, the r o l e of personality 116 and the use of l i t e r a t u r e i n d a i l y l i f e and thus are considered reader-oriented. In t h i s decade aspects of the reader explored i n research expand to include studies of connections between the readers's values and perceptions, bibliotherapy studies and a r t i c l e s stressing the s o c i a l relevance of l i t e r a t u r e . Six (26%) of the studies focus on textual q u a l i t y and measurement of l i t e r a r y a b i l i t i e s and are thus considered text-oriented. In t h i s group are included for the f i r s t time studies of comprehension, which explore ways of getting the meaning from the text. Response-orientations, which focus on the process of developing meaning, are c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of only one study. F i n a l l y , the single account of a poet's r e c o l l e c t i o n completes the number of studies. The marked c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of the decade i s the s h i f t towards reader-orientations. a. Reader-orientations Reader-oriented conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e expand and d i v e r s i f y considerably i n t h i s decade. They can be divided roughly into those which stress public or private aspects of response. Reader-oriented studies which stress public aspects can be subdivided into those which focus on the r e l a t i o n s h i p between p o l i t i c a l behavior and reading (Gray, 1947; Berelson, 1945) and those which focus on the more s o c i a l and recreational aspects of reading (Waples, Berelson, and Bradshaw, 1940; Strang, 1942). Those which 117 stress personal relevance of response can be further subdivided into those which focus on changing the reader for the better (bibliotherapy and psychoanalysis) and those which used l i t e r a t u r e as an observation t o o l of personality c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s (psychological). Those studies which centre on changing the reader are explored i n the bibliotherapy studies of the l a t t e r half of the decade (Allen, 1946; Lazarfeld 1949; Schneck, 1946; Shrodes, 1949). Those response-oriented studies which centre on observation rather than change are represented by the Wolfenstein (1946) study with mothers and children. In t h i s study, Wolfenstein merely makes observations about the mothers 1 responses to the children's story. F i n a l l y , there i s a beginning strand of reader-oriented studies which focus on phys i o l o g i c a l aspects of the ways i n which the reader's values a f f e c t word recognition a b i l i t y (Bruner and Postman, 1947; Postman, Bruner and MacGinnes, 1948). The war seems to have been an important impetus on those studies which focus on the s o c i a l and p o l i t i c a l dimensions of response. During the f o r t i e s , the conviction that response to l i t e r a t u r e strongly a f f e c t s d a i l y l i f e seemed to be growing. The s o c i a l h i s t o r i a n s Waples, Berelson, and Bradshaw (1940) propose i n t h e i r book, What reading does to people, that what i s known about the influences of reading by advertisers, publishers, teachers, etc. has never been assembled i n one volume for the guidance of those who seek to use p r i n t i n the public i n t e r e s t , (p. 5) 118 They stress, i n t h e i r introduction that " i n short, reading i s a s o c i a l process" (p. 30). S i g n i f i c a n t l y , they d i s t i n g u i s h between aesthetic experience and l e i s u r e reading: "to c a l l enriched aesthetic experience a s o c i a l e f f e c t of reading i s thus somewhat improper" (p. 122) and they emphasize that "'reading for fun' or 'just reading' i s not spectacular; but i t i s the predominant type of reading" (p. 123) . Gray (1947) summarizes no fewer than t h i r t e e n studies on the e f f e c t s of reading, the majority with adult readers. He states that "the recent rapid increase i n the int e r e s t i n bibliotherapy i s a s t r i k i n g example of the growing confidence i n the p o s i t i v e values of reading" (p. 269). He emphasizes p o l i t i c a l dimensions of response to l i t e r a t u r e : "the press has tremendous p o s s i b i l i t i e s for promoting i n d i v i d u a l development and for determining the d i r e c t i o n of s o c i a l progress" (p. 275). He discusses these research studies on the e f f e c t s of reading under f i v e headings: 1) information and b e l i e f s , for example, Seward and S i l v e r s ' (1943) "A study of b e l i e f i n the accuracy of newspaper reports"; 2) attitudes and morale, for example, A l l p o r t and Lepkin's (1943) "Building war morale with news headlines"; 3) public opinion, for example, Berelson's (1942) "The e f f e c t of p r i n t upon public opinion"; 4) voting, for example, Hartmann's (1936) "A f i e l d experiment on the comparative effectiveness of 119 'emotional' and ' r a t i o n a l ' p o l i t i c a l l e a f l e t s i n determining e l e c t i o n r e s u l t s " ; and 5) crime and a n t i s o c i a l behaviour, for example, Frances Fenton's (1911) The influence of newspaper presentations upon the growth of crime and other a n t i s o c i a l a c t i v i t y . Although some of these studies were published before the f o r t i e s , i t i s s i g n i f i c a n t that there i s continued i n t e r e s t i n t h e i r r e s u l t s during the f o r t i e s . Berelson (1945) i s another who explores the s o c i a l aspects of response to l i t e r a t u r e . His study explores "differences i n p o l i t i c a l behaviour between users of the l i b r a r y and nonusers, or between people who read more books and people who read fewer" (p. 281). Strang (1942), s i m i l a r l y , explores the close connection between an individual's response to l i t e r a t u r e and the response to r e a l l i f e . Her study emphasizes both public and private dimensions of response. In her study, she does not extend her exploration of private dimensions as far as do the psychotherapists. However, her assumption, that "an i n d i v i d u a l ' s reading pattern has a central core or radix which, more or less, determines i t s nature" (p. 4), foreshadows the thinking of Norman Holland concerning reader response by nearly twenty years. The o v e r a l l implication of these reader-based s o c i a l studies i s that not only does l i t e r a t u r e have an important e f f e c t on d a i l y l i f e , but also the personality and interests evident i n the reader's d a i l y 120 l i f e have implications for the way she or he responds to l i t e r a t u r e . The reader-oriented studies which explore private personal dimensions of response with a view to changing the i n d i v i d u a l by using l i t e r a t u r e as a means to personal growth and adjustment, include the studies of A l l e n (1946), Schneck (1946), Lazarfeld (1949), and Shrodes (1949). The Shrodes (1949) d i s s e r t a t i o n uses the case study method with f i f t e e n u n i v e r s i t y students enrolled i n the in s t r u c t o r ' s "Directed Reading" course. This course "was to be a course adapted to the needs and in t e r e s t s of each i n d i v i d u a l student". Instead of class meetings, "there would be occasional i n d i v i d u a l discussions of the readings, and . . . a plan of reading would be worked out i n a preliminary conference with the i n s t r u c t o r " (p. 190). An example of the second group of reader-based studies, which explores responses only for purposes of observation, i s the Wolfenstein (1946) study. This laboratory study explores "a subject hitherto scarcely treated i n children's s t o r i e s " : the experience of the f i r s t c h i l d during the mother's pregnancy with the second. The story used, " S a l l y and the baby and the rampatan", was devised with the aid of a psychologist and a professional writer. The story was concerned with expression of the c h i l d ' s possible ambivalence about the new s i b l i n g which would not arouse undue g u i l t . The study explores the r e l a t i o n s h i p between the 121 mother's reaction both during and a f t e r she reads the story as i t modifies the reaction of her c h i l d . As well, the appendix of the study includes a description of the father's reaction the story. F i n a l l y , of the studies which focus on the reader, there are the p h y s i o l o g i c a l studies of Bruner and Postman (1947 and 1948). Their reader-based conceptions of response are c l e a r : what the organism perceives, as well as how i t manipulates i t s environment, i s at least i n part determined by such central factors as needs attitudes and i n d i v i d u a l habit systems, (p. 69) In the second experiment with college students, on responses to single value-laden words, these researchers continue to t e s t the r e l a t e d assumptions that "personal values are demonstrable determinants of what the i n d i v i d u a l selects perceptually from h i s environment" (p. 143). Perceptual s e l e c t i o n , they propose, i s "a servant of one's inter e s t s , needs and values" (p. 142). b. Text-orientations Accompanying these reader-based explorations of response to l i t e r a t u r e as i t a f f e c t s d a i l y l i f e i n a democracy are the continuing text-oriented studies. One study i s concerned with the e f f e c t of knowledge of the author on evaluation of textual q u a l i t y (Michael, Rosenthal and DeCamp, 1949) . This study investigates the r e l a t i o n s h i p between an 122 a u t h o r ' s p r e s t i g e a n d t h e r a n k i n g o f t h e q u a l i t y o f t h e t e x t . T h e s e r e s e a r c h e r s e x p l o r e two p e d a g o g i c a l l y - o r i e n t e d h y p o t h e s e s : 1. t h a t s h i f t s o c c u r i n t h e d e g r e e o f p r e f e r e n c e s i n d i c a t e d f o r p r o s e a n d p o e t r y p a s s a g e s f o l l o w i n g t h e a s c r i b i n g o f e a c h o f t h e p a s s a g e s t o a w e l l known w r i t e r ; 2. t h a t t h e a m o u n t a n d d i r e c t i o n o f t h e s h i f t s i n p r e f e r e n c e s f o r p a s s a g e s d e p e n d u p o n t h e s t r e n g t h o f t h e p r e f e r e n c e s o f t h e w r i t e r s a s s o c i a t e d w i t h t h e m . ( p . 304) D i r e c t i o n s t o t h e s u b j e c t s a r e a s f o l l o w s : t o r a n k t h e s e a u t h o r s ( p o e t s ) a c c o r d i n g t o t h o s e whom y o u c o n s i d e r t o b e t h e b e s t a u t h o r s . P l a c e a n u m b e r 1 b e s i d e t h e a u t h o r ( p o e t ) whom y o u c o n s i d e r t o b e t h e b e s t , a n d a n u m b e r 2 b e s i d e t h e n e x t b e s t a u t h o r ( p o e t ) , a n d s o o n u n t i l y o u h a v e c o m p l e t e d t h e l i s t o f 12 a u t h o r s ( p o e t s ) . (P- 396) T h e r e s e a r c h e r s p o i n t o u t t h a t , " s i m i l a r i n s t r u c t i o n s w e r e p l a c e d a t t h e b e g i n n i n g o f t h e two c o l l e c t i o n s o f p r o s e a n d p o e t r y s e l e c t i o n s e x c e p t t h e w o r d " p a s s a g e " was s u b s t i t u t e d f o r " a u t h o r " o r " p o e t " a n d t h e w o r d " w h i c h " f o r " w h o m " , ( p . 396) F o u r o t h e r s t u d i e s s u g g e s t a t e x t - r a t h e r t h a n r e a d e r o r i e n t a t i o n i n t h e i r f o c u s o n c o m p r e h e n s i o n o f t h e t e x t : " F u n d a m e n t a l f a c t o r s o f c o m p r e h e n s i o n i n r e a d i n g " ( D a v i s , 1944) ; " M e a s u r e m e n t o f c o m p r e h e n s i o n o f l i t e r a t u r e a n d i t s r e l a t i o n t o e n j o y m e n t " ( H a r r i s , 194 6 ) ; " M e a s u r i n g a c h i e v e m e n t i n h i g h s c h o o l E n g l i s h " ( W h i t e , 1947) ; a n d " M e a s u r e m e n t o f c o m p r e h e n s i o n o f l i t e r a t u r e " ( H a r r i s , 1948) . D a v i s (1944) , w o r k i n g w i t h 421 f r e s h m e n i n t e a c h e r s c o l l e g e , s e e k s t o " d e t e r m i n e t h e s k i l l s i n v o l v e d i n r e a d i n g 123 comprehension that are deemed most important by au t h o r i t i e s " (p. 185). His assumption i s that reading comprehension " i s not a unitary a b i l i t y " (p. 189). This comprehension study, which assumes that meaning i s found rather than created by the reader, i s the f i r s t of i t s type to be included as research on response to l i t e r a t u r e . c. Response-orientations The f i r s t response-oriented study conducted as part of classroom teaching i s that of Vergara (1946). In her study of "a group of college women's responses to poetry", the emphasis i s decidedly on the context of response i t s e l f . The effectiveness of two d i f f e r e n t methods of presentation i s explored. The f i r s t method, or a l reading by an instructor, i s compared with s i l e n t reading by students "with a view to evaluating the contributions made by each" (p. 1). In addition, Vergara: aimed to determine what factors i n c u l t u r a l background influence readers i n t h e i r reactions to poetry. Furthermore, inasmuch as readers may also be influenced i n t h e i r understanding and appreciation of poetry by various elements, such as imagery, symbolism, tone, color, and rhythm, poems in which these elements are present were included i n t h i s study, (p. 1) In t h i s reporting of several experiments, supplemented by i n d i v i d u a l interviews and questionnaires concerning backgrounds, diverse methods of e l i c i t i n g and channeling "response" are employed. These range from controlled conditions (during which the responses were timed and 124 r e s t r i c t e d as to length) to more free responses i n which the teacher read poems to students, following which they wrote "quite f r e e l y on t h e i r interpretation of the sense and mood of a l l the poems" (p. 37). These students also received a number of poems to "read s i l e n t l y and frequently at t h e i r l e i s u r e " (p. 37), a f t e r which they had a group discussion during which "stenographers took notes" (p. 37). d. Author-orientation F i n a l l y , a lone study of i t s type describes a poet's experience of writing a poem about his childhood (Flourney, 1949) . The report of t h i s study takes the form of a b r i e f abstract. To summarize, studies i n the f o r t i e s emphasize a reader-oriented s o c i a l and personal relevance of response to l i t e r a t u r e . The f i r s t bibliotherapy studies and the f i r s t comprehension studies appear i n t h i s decade. The increasing trend toward reader-orientations i s due, i n part, to the in t e r e s t i n bibliotherapy studies, which suggest that " l i t e r a t u r e gives . . . (the reader) insight into his motivation and has the power to make him whole" (Shrodes, 1949, p. 329). In addition, the following statement suggests a second reason for the s h i f t from text-based to reader-based emphases i n research during the f o r t i e s : i n these days of c r i s i s , the s o c i a l implications of various means of communication, including reading, are 125 uppermost i n the minds of many people, for i t i s i n part through reading that decisions of national and international importance are made, sustained and implemented. (Strang, 1942, p. 1) VII. Summary This chapter has explored research conceptions i n the three e a r l i e s t decades of research. During the period from 1910-19, when comparatively few attended college, i t was the behaviorist psychologists, rather than educators, who began the research on response to l i t e r a t u r e . The experiments of Roblee and Washburn (1912) and Giv l e r (1915) focused on the formal properties of text, s p e c i f i c a l l y the pure sound of language, on the assumption that, "apart from the associative power of words, the sounds which compose them . . . exert a not inconsiderable influence on t h e i r l i t e r a r y value" (Roblee and Washburn, 1912, p. 579). During the period from 1920-9, research conceptions of both l i t e r a t u r e and response expanded. L i t e r a r y pedagogical researchers added published poetry to the single sounds and words of l i t e r a t u r e and free written responses to the psychologists' requests for immediate o r a l impressions. The emphasis i n t h i s decade was on appreciation, aesthetics, and image formation, as determined by the text. Response tasks varied. They ranged from judgment of the best version of a stanza, through free association of single words, to written responses to poems. Although some researchers explored i n d i v i d u a l differences, the emphasis i n many studies was on 126 the text as determining the response. This focus suggested a possibly coincidental correspondence with the i n c i p i e n t i n t e r e s t i n New C r i t i c i s m outside the u n i v e r s i t y . During the period from 193 0-9, most of the studies with adult and college readers focused on poetry or short l i t e r a r y passages. Variable text q u a l i t y was stressed. Often the o r i g i n a l was included with the parodies, or else single stanzas of published poetry were presented with weakened versions. The emphasis was on the sound and the rhythm. Response was concerned with the i d e n t i f i c a t i o n of as well as reaction to the q u a l i t y of the l i t e r a r y pieces. This predominant emphasis on qu a l i t y as a fixed c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of the text seemed to support the beginning popularity of New C r i t i c i s m i n college classrooms. During the f o r t i e s , e s p e c i a l l y during the second half of the decade, when veterans flocked to the campuses i n droves, research conceptions exhibited an expansive d i v e r s i t y i n the areas of both response and l i t e r a t u r e . Not only researcher-devised s t o r i e s , but also newspapers, plays, novels, pamphlets and o r a l l i t e r a t u r e f e l l under the rubric of " l i t e r a t u r e " . Responses included expressions of reading i n t e r e s t and taste, as well as judgments of q u a l i t y and psychoanalytic free responses. There were s o c i a l studies of reading i n t e r e s t s , a study exploring the e f f e c t s of reading on p o l i t i c a l behavior, and a description of the l i t e r a t u r e and b e l i e f s of o r a l cultures. In addition, bibliotherapy 127 studies i n the l a t e r years of the decade proposed that l i t e r a t u r e could be used to change the reader's attitudes and behavior. I f Douglas Bush (1949) had attacked New C r i t i c i s m for i t s r e j e c t i o n of the common reader who s t i l l thought that "poetry deals with l i f e " (p. 20), research on response to l i t e r a t u r e during the f o r t i e s decidedly integrated l i t e r a t u r e with r e a l l i f e . VIII. Conclusion Research conceptions during t h i s period expanded from phy s i o l o g i c a l and verbal associations to the pure sounds of language. During the f o r t i e s , research conceptions reached peak i n d i v e r s i t y . Oral l i t e r a t u r e , newspapers, sounds of language, as well as novels and poetry constituted the v a r i e t y of l i t e r a t u r e . Responses ranged from judgments of q u a l i t y to free verbal responses and surveys of reading habits. The i n c l u s i o n of bibliotherapy studies, studies exploring s o c i a l and p o l i t i c a l aspects of response to l i t e r a t u r e , studies investigating recreational reading habits of c i t i z e n s i n a democracy, as well as the study exploring o r a l cultures suggested that during the f o r t i e s , response to l i t e r a t u r e constituted an e s s e n t i a l part of everyday l i f e . Comparison with foundation conceptions of l i t e r a t u r e as presented i n Chapter Two reveals that although researchers during these decades have generally focused on p r i n t , they have not r e s t r i c t e d themselves to t h i s aspect. Comparison 128 with foundation conceptions of response, as presented i n Chapter Three, suggests, understandably, only loose correspondence with the general focus on either the reader, or the text, or the response. Most of t h i s thinking was not f u l l y a r t i c u l a t e d when the research began. However, i t could be argued that the seeds of future thinking, such as the response-orientation, are evident i n t h i s early research, which has been described as atheoretical (Singer, 1985, p. 630). I t could also be argued that researchers have adopted these general emphases merely as a r b i t r a r y s t a r t i n g points from which to begin t h e i r explorations. In addition to the text-, reader-, and response-orientations which correspond to the foundation conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e presented i n t h i s d i s s e r t a t i o n , researchers also included p h y s i o l o g i c a l studies and explorations of reading i n t e r e s t s . 129 CHAPTER FIVE TRANSITION PERIOD: 1950-69 I. Introduction I I . S o c i a l and pedagogical conditions: 1950-9 A. Research: s t a b i l i t y and conservatism 1. Research conceptions of l i t e r a t u r e 2. Research conceptions of response I I I . S o c i a l and pedagogical conditions: 1960-9 A. Research: return to the reader 1. Research conceptions of l i t e r a t u r e 2. Research conceptions of response IV. Summary V. Conclusion I. Introduction The f i f t i e s and s i x t i e s mark a t r a n s i t i o n period i n research conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e . While New C r i t i c a l teaching approaches i n college English classrooms reached t h e i r height of popularity, spurred by the publ i c a t i o n of Brooks (1938) Understanding Poetry, a strong opposing undercurrent of research was coming to the fore with works such as Frye's (1957) Anatomy of c r i t i c i s m and Chomsky's (1957) Syntactic Structures. Important publications i n the s i x t i e s included the 1968 reissuing of Rosenblatt's L i t e r a t u r e as Exploration and Purves' (1968) Elements of l i t e r a r y response, a content analysis scheme of the reader's response which would complement the nearly forty-year old Richards* (1929) scheme of reader response to l i t e r a t u r e . 129 130 136 136 138 141 149 149 152 158 159 130 I I . S o c i a l and pedagogical conditions: 1950-9 During the f i f t i e s , world trade volume increased i n an environment of economic s t a b i l i t y . In both Canada and the United States, economic growth soared: "Canada's GNP doubled - from $18.4 b i l l i o n to $36.8 b i l l i o n ; the American GNP rose 57 per cent, and reached $600 b i l l i o n i n 1960" (Bennett, 1989, p. 647). I t was increasingly evident that Canada's post-war prosperity depended heavily on that of the United States (Bennett, 1989, p. 650). There was t a l k of free trade between Canada and the United States. However, cautious of American domination, Mackenzie King abandoned the project during h i s l a s t days i n o f f i c e . The normally f r i e n d l y Canadian-American defence r e l a t i o n s h i p entered a period of turbulence during the late 1950s. In the United States, Eisenhower's landslide e l e c t i o n v i c t o r i e s i n 1952 and 1956 r e f l e c t e d consensus p o l i t i c s and the censure of McCarthy i n December 1954 curbed the p o l i t i c a l abuse of anti-communism. Outside the country, a system of a l l i a n c e s and m i l i t a r y bases bolstered American influence on a l l continents. The economic boom of the decade produced an abundance of consumer goods i n both countries, the most important of which seemed to be t e l e v i s i o n , although high speed e l e c t r o n i c computers also were invented during t h i s decade. Dr. Spock's (1957) c h i l d - r e a r i n g manual, advocating permissiveness became a b e s t s e l l e r and i n Canada the b i r t h rate reached a peak i n 1959 (Bennett, 1989, p. 652). An increasing number of women 131 chose to marry and r a i s e a family, decreasing the percentage of women i n the work force from the 1943 figure of 31.4 per cent to the 1953 figure of 23.4 per cent (Bennett, 1989, p. 652). In both Canada and the United States, suburban housing t r a c t s , such as Vancouver's Fraserview and Winnipeg's Wildwood (which were modeled afte r the f i r s t suburban community, Levittown, Long Island), changed l i f e patterns for middle and working classes (Bennett, p. 654). During the same decade, developments i n medical research had resulted i n the discovery of the p o l i o vaccine (Jonas Salk) and cures for tuberculosis. Towards the end of the f i f t i e s , the launching of Sputnik (1957) unleashed a flood of c r i t i c i s m against Western educational systems. Thus, although some suggest that the f i f t i e s were a time of prosperity and conservatism, undercurrents of unrest were mounting. P h i l l i p s (1957) states that t o t a l undergraduate enrolment i n Canada i n 1950 was about 69,000 (p. 212). In the United States, t h i r t y per cent of college-age youths were attending u n i v e r s i t y (Horowitz, 1987, p. 6). The college scene seemed r e l a t i v e l y uneventful a f t e r i t s intensive period of growth i n the f o r t i e s . Harris (1963) explains the lack of innovation during the years 1945-60 as being due to such factors as: 1) the c u r r i c u l a r changes, recently implemented in the previous decade; 2) the severe f i n a n c i a l constraints at Canadian u n i v e r s i t i e s throughout the f o r t i e s and f i f t i e s ; 132 and 3) the "increasing preoccupation of members of the teaching s t a f f with graduate work and with scholarship and research" (p. 501). However, changes were soon to be f e l t at a l l North American campuses. Logan explains the uneasy premonition at the University of B r i t i s h Columbia, with the r e a l i z a t i o n that the c r e s t of population growth would soon reach the u n i v e r s i t y : . . . by 1954 i t was becoming apparent that expansion of unprecedented order, not merely i n the c a p i t a l plant, but also i n the operating f a c i l i t i e s and the teaching s t a f f , would be necessary within a very short time. (p. 209) Although r e g i s t r a t i o n at the University of B r i t i s h Columbia declined s l i g h t l y i n 1952-3, the r e s p i t e was b r i e f : " f i v e years l a t e r , the r e g i s t r a t i o n for the session of 1957- 58 has reached 8,986, less that 4 00 short of the highest post-war r e g i s t r a t i o n , i n 1947-48" (Logan, 1958, p. 177). The increase i n enrolment continued unabated to the end of the decade, attributed to such factors as the r i s i n g b i r t h rate, increased prosperity and the "growing keenness on university education" (Logan, 1958, p. 177). In addition, during t h i s period, Logan observes the increasing i n f l u x of non-Canadians to the University campus: In the session 1957-8 more than 1,200 undergraduates, i n a t o t a l enrolment of 9,000, received t h e i r pre-university education i n countries outside Canada, (p. 241) Horowitz (1987) describes the c h a r a c t e r i s t i c o b l i v i o n of college students of the f i f t i e s to the 'real world 1: "science and technology were s p l i t t i n g the atom, with i t s immense dangers and promises, but college men knew better than to take study too seriously" (p. 150). The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching (1977) concurs: " u n t i l the 1960's, i t was widely assumed that . . . undergraduate education was 'for* rather than 'by' the students, and nearly a l l students accepted that proposition" (p. 86). "As freshmen, these college and u n i v e r s i t y students accepted t h e i r parents' p o l i t i c s , and became more conservative as they went through college" (Goldsen, 1960, p. 72) . In addition, during t h i s period i t was becoming increasingly evident that grades correlated p o s i t i v e l y with eventual incomes (Havemann and West, 1952, p. 159). Horowitz (1987) concurs that now with nearly a t h i r d of American youths between 18 and 21 attending college, less status was attached to admissions and more to grades and graduation (p. 190). However, the seeds of c o l l e g i a t e unrest, l i k e those of society, were being sown. College r a d i c a l s brought p o l i t i c s s u r r e p t i t i o u s l y back on campus i n the late f i f t i e s . In college English classrooms by 1950, the t r a d i t i o n a l elements of the late nineteenth-century b e l l e t r i s t i c curriculum had been r e - d i s t r i b u t e d : "Composition" remained a major component of a f i r s t - y e a r required course i n "English Composition and L i t e r a t u r e " while the t r a d i t i o n a l concerns of " c r i t i c a l " r h e t o r i c were subsumed by senior courses i n various topics under " c r i t i c i s m " . (Johnson, 1988, p. 869) 134 Hunt (1990) describes the f e e l i n g i n many college English classrooms of the f i f t i e s : there was a common language, a very deep and widely shared set of common assumptions about how the world worked . . . When there were disagreements - and there were l o t s of them, heated ones - they took place within a set of boundaries that we can now see . . . were remarkably narrow and c l e a r l y defined. Everyone, at bottom, was a New C r i t i c , (p. 98) Hubert (1989) points out that at the mid-century, poetics and l i t e r a t u r e were more important than language and r h e t o r i c a l arts (p. 157). In addition, he dates the intere s t i n creative writing from the la t e f o r t i e s with Earle Birney 1s inauguration of a course "devoted to practice i n imaginative wri t i n g - at the University of B r i t i s h Columbia", suggesting that i t " t y p i f i e d the strongly aesthetic nature of English studies at mid-century" (p. 3 3 0). However, underlying challenges to the status quo were di s c e r n i b l e . Straw (1990) observes that the 1957 publication of Frye's (1957) Anatomy of C r i t i c i s m ushered i n "a new era of l i t e r a r y scholarship ... with the app l i c a t i o n of a systems approach to the reading and interpretation of l i t e r a t u r e " (p. 58). During the same year, Chomsky's (1957) Syntactic structures was "storming the B a s t i l l e of behaviorism i n language and psychology" (Hunt, 1990, p. 100) by stressing the importance of a mental or cognitive "competence" underlying the v i s i b l e "performance" of language users. Hunt (1990) draws p a r a l l e l s between the respective influences of these two important works, with the emphasis of both on the 135 importance of underlying structure. He points out that Frye's work represents an important "reconnection of l i t e r a r y texts to each other, i f not to the s o c i a l and physical world" (p. 101) . As concerns the pedagogical s i t u a t i o n , the beginnings of a response-oriented curriculum i n the classroom can be traced to the English I n s t i t u t e Conference of 1957 (Gerber, 1957). The subject was "Literature and B e l i e f " . It attracted speakers as diverse as Cleanth Brooks, Douglas Bush, Nathan Scott and Louis Martz. The general conclusion of t h i s conference was that the l i t e r a r y work must be regarded both as "something apart from experience", and yet at the same time, "grounded i n experience requiring our t o t a l engagement for understanding and enjoyment" (p. 356). B e r l i n (1988) observes that i n colleges i n the United States "the l i t e r a r y c r i t i c i s m approach to composition often came i n tandem with the o f f e r i n g of creative writing courses" (p. 89). This corresponded to Canadian developments i n the 1950's, with the beginnings of the creative writing course in 1949. These courses i n creative writing were often accompanied by remedial writing courses "for those students who could not cope i n the regular f i r s t - y e a r course" (Berlin, 1988, p. 91). Hubert (1989) observes that the remedial model took the form of writing labs at McGill and Toronto i n the la t e f i f t i e s and early s i x t i e s (p. 343). 136 With the example of s c i e n t i f i c research improving the q u a l i t y of l i f e , i t only made sense that educational research would have much to o f f e r i n the way of improving schooling. The f i f t i e s proved to be the turning point. In 1950, the Kellogg Foundation contributed $6 m i l l i o n to eight u n i v e r s i t i e s for the improvement of t r a i n i n g of school administrators. In addition, from 1956 to i960, appropriations for research increased tenfold, to $10 m i l l i o n , and research grants relevant to education were also being made by the National I n s t i t u t e of Mental Health, the O f f i c e of Naval Research and the National Science Foundation. In 1966, appropriations for the U. S. O f f i c e of Education were more than $100 m i l l i o n . (Button and Provenzo, 1989, p. 325) A. Research (1950-9): s t a b i l i t y and conservatism The increase i n funding during the f i f t i e s seems to have had l i t t l e impact on the research which explored adult response to l i t e r a t u r e . The number of studies with adult and college readers a c t u a l l y decreased s l i g h t l y from 23 i n the f o r t i e s to 21 i n the f i f t i e s (See Appendix 3, Table 5). 1. Research conceptions of l i t e r a t u r e In t h i s decade, research conceptions of l i t e r a t u r e no longer include pamphlets, magazine or newspaper a r t i c l e s . As compared with the f o r t i e s , there i s less v a r i e t y of genres. Fragments of text, either poetry or prose segments predominate. Eppell (1950), Gunn (1951), and P h i l i p (1951) use stanzas of poetry. Black (1954), Jenkinson (1957), 137 Schubert (1953), Swain (1953), Thayer and Pronko (1958 and 1959), Weisgerber (1957) and Witzig (1956) use prose fragments. Full-length books are used i n both bibliotherapy (Amato, 1957) and survey (Lewis, 1959). Three uses of genres are noteworthy. Wilson's (1951) study describes the use of not f i c t i o n a l , but n o n f i c t i o n a l texts i n the bibliotherapy treatment of an a t t i t u d i n a l pathosis. There i s also the f i r s t research use of theatre performance, described i n Matson's (1953) " A study of years of formal education as a factor i n audience response to idea t i o n a l content and treatment i n plays". F i n a l l y , the f i r s t study to make exclusive and extensive use of short s t o r i e s i s that of E l l i s (1951), i n her exploration of these works as "projective documents" of the author's personality. S p e c i f i c examples of works used suggest the d i v e r s i t y . Wilson (1951) uses works such as Release from nervous tension. Victory over Fear, and Psychology applied to l i f e and work i n h i s bibliotherapy. Matson (1953) uses 162 episodes, selected from f i f t e e n plays, such as The adding machine. Death of a salesman and Man and Superman. Br i t t o n (1954) uses poems such as Yeats' "I dreamed that I stood", Macleish's "I t e l l you the generations of man" and Edith S i t w e l l ' s "The youth with the red gold h a i r " . Black (1954) uses excerpts from Chur c h i l l ' s "My early l i f e " , as well as miscellaneous a r t i c l e s from The Manchester Guardian. 138 Quality of text i s a c r i t e r i o n c i t e d by Eppel (1951) and B r i t t o n (1954), who both compare better with lesser poetry. Gunn (1951) seeks variety i n his s e l e c t i o n of poetry. Thayer and Pronko (1958), whose experiment explores the influence of e t h i c a l and moral values on perception, require ambiguity as a c r i t e r i o n . Reports of research i n t h i s decade suggest increasing overt awareness concerning the hazy d i s t i n c t i o n s between types of text. For example, i n his experiment, Witzig (1956) notes the s i m i l a r i t i e s between researcher-devised archetypal and f a c t u a l passages: From a t h e o r e t i c a l standpoint, the f i n a l d r a fts of the four selections a l l have many elements of both archetypal and f a c t u a l nature. This could not, of course be helped because myths must be couched i n the language of consciously known facts, and facts, to have meaning, may be contaminated with unknown archetypal influence, (p. 180) 2. Research conceptions of response During t h i s decade, text and reader-oriented conceptions of response seem about equal. There are nine (43%) each of reader-oriented and text-oriented studies, two (10%) response-oriented studies and one author-oriented study. a. Text-orientations Text-oriented studies include t e s t s involving the judgment of q u a l i t y of l i t e r a r y works (Eppel, 1951; Britton, 139 1954; Gunn, 1951; P h i l i p , 1951), as well as t e s t s of comprehension of l i t e r a t u r e (Romney (1950; Schubert, 1953; Black, 1954; Witzig, 1956; and Weisgerber, 1957). Schubert's t e s t compares comprehension and appreciation, as measured by the Iowa reading t e s t and the ranking of four selections in order of l i t e r a r y q u a l i t y . Weisgerber (1957) examines s e n s i t i v i t y i n judging f a c i a l emotional expressions as an indicator of reading comprehension a b i l i t y . Witzig's (1956) study of "the comparative e f f e c t on retention of mythological and f a c t u a l prose" explores the hypothesis that the more archetypic, the more meaningful a s e l e c t i o n of prose. The predominant text-orientations of response lead from conceptions of text as "container" of meaning: "a poem can have l i t e r a r y merit whether or not i t i s comprehensible or pleasing" (Gunn, 1951, p. 102). b. Reader-orientations Reader-oriented studies include f i v e aspects. The f i r s t includes two bibliotherapy treatments: Amato's (1957), "Some ef f e c t s of bibliotherapy on young adults" and Wilson's (1951), "Treatment of an a t t i t u d i n a l pathosis by bibliotherapy: a case study". The second aspect concerns reader attitudes. Sano's (1950) "College students' attitudes toward l i t e r a t u r e " asks students to rank f i f t y statements about the function of l i t e r a t u r e . The t h i r d aspect investigates reading preferences: Wilson's (1956), " L i t e r a r y 140 experience and personality" and Lewis's (1959), "Books that Germans are reading about America". The fourth aspect concerns developmental influences: Matson's (1953) "A study of years of formal education as a factor i n audience response to i d e a t i o n a l content and treatment i n plays". F i n a l l y , a f i f t h aspect of reader-orientations concerns studies which explore the r e l a t i o n between perceptions and values (Hallowell, 1951; Thayer and Pronko, 1958 and 1959). c. Response-orientations Response-oriented studies which focus on the process of a r r i v i n g at a f i n a l response are two: the d i s s e r t a t i o n s of Swain (1953), "Conscious thought processes used i n the in t e r p r e t a t i o n of reading material", and Jenkinson (1957), "Selected processes and d i f f i c u l t i e s of reading comprehension". Both ask t h e i r subjects to think aloud about the strategies they use to perform s p e c i f i c comprehension tasks. F i n a l l y , there i s a single author-oriented study. E l l i s (1951) explores the hypothesis that "personality re- organizational processes are externalised i n s t o r i e s " . Her judges independently rate the elements of the short s t o r i e s and l i f e segments of eight authors including Poe, Twain, M e l v i l l e and Wilde. Thus, research conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e are marked by balance between reader- and text-oriented 141 conceptions. However, text-orientations are distinguished by the increase i n studies including comprehension as part of response to l i t e r a t u r e . Reader-oriented studies are distinguished by studies which explore the r e l a t i o n s h i p between values and perceptions. This balance i n research conceptions occurs at a time when New C r i t i c a l approaches were strong i n the college classroom, although the complementary trend toward student-centred i n s t r u c t i o n i s becoming increasingly popular. Unlike the research of the f o r t i e s , which included the exploration of d a i l y reading and considered even newspaper a r t i c l e s as " l i t e r a t u r e " , research during the f i f t i e s seems, with the exception of the Lewis (1959) study, s t r i k i n g l y unconcerned with the p o l i t i c a l and s o c i a l milieu. S i m i l a r l y , college students work hard, accept s o c i e t a l values, and l i s t e n with passive respect to t h e i r professors. At the same time, text-oriented researchers such as Black (1954) investigate the " d i f f i c u l t y of t r a i n i n g college students i n understanding what they read". I I I . S o c i a l and pedagogical conditions: 1960-9 The largest sustained c a p i t a l i s t economic boom on record spanned most of t h i s decade. I t coincided with r e b e l l i o n i n many sectors of society. Relations between Canada and the United States became strained when Diefenbaker questioned Kennedy's M i s s i l e C r i s i s actions (1962). This 142 action brought the association between the two leaders "to the breaking point" (Bennett, 1989, p. 635). During the s i x t i e s , the Quiet Revolution dawned i n Quebec (1960). There were "Go home L i z " protests against the Queen when she v i s i t e d Quebec (19 64). In the same year, the Maple Leaf Flag was o f f i c i a l l y adopted. Centennial Year celebrations and Expo '67 coincided with Charles de Gaulle's State V i s i t to Quebec. In 1968, Trudeaumania was accompanied by the formation of the P a r t i Quebecois and new concerns about foreign ownership. In the United States, opposition to involvement i n Vietnam, e s p e c i a l l y among univer s i t y students (Moratorium Protest, Nov. 19 69) turned v i o l e n t (Weatherman Chicago Riots, Oct 1969). New Left and Marxist theories became popular, and membership i n r a d i c a l groups swelled (Students for a Democratic Society, Black Panthers). C i v i l r i g h t s movements and indignation over the perceived unfairness and biases towards minorities i n I.Q. tests characterized the early years of the decade. President Kennedy was assassinated i n 1963; Malcolm X was shot i n 1965; and Martin Luther King was k i l l e d i n 1968. In 1963 Betty Friedan's The Feminine Mystique described the i s o l a t i o n of the suburban housewife. In 1967 the National Organization for Women (NOW) was founded with chapters i n both Canada and the United States. Bennett (1989) points out that: " i n Canada, women's l i b e r a t i o n movements of 143 the 1960s and 1970s grew out of New Left student movements" (p. 670). In the realm of technology, the f i r s t human heart transplant was performed on Louis Washkansky by Dr. Christian Barnard i n 1967; Apollo 11 landed the f i r s t men on the moon (July 20, 1969); and lasers and integrated c i r c u i t s were new e l e c t r o n i c inventions. A l l contributed to a f a i t h i n s c i e n t i f i c solutions to problems (such as the "green revolution" i n a g r i c u l t u r e ) . The harmful e f f e c t s of science, i t was proposed, could be controlled (1963 nuclear weapon t e s t ban treaty, 1968 non-proliferation t r e a t y ) . In the d a i l y l i f e of the s i x t i e s , the boundary between fi n e and popular art became blurred. Examples are the Pop Art of Andy Warhol and rock musicals, such as "Hair" i n 1968. A n o n - p o l i t i c a l counter-culture developed, r e j e c t i n g t r a d i t i o n a l bourgeois l i f e goals and personal habits. The use of marijuana and hallucinogens spread (Woodstock, 1968). College students, having come into t h e i r own as a major power, seemed to be at the centre of the revolution. With respect to the numbers of college students during the decade Zsigmond and Wennaas (1970) state that i n 1967-8, there were 372,000 students i n Canadian u n i v e r s i t i e s . This was a substantial increase from t h e i r figure of 91,000 for the year 1951-2 (p. 29). Part-time enrolment increased even more spectacularly, from about 4,100 i n 1951-2 to almost 100,000 i n 1967-8 (p. 30). 144 Students i n both Canada and the United States entered u n i v e r s i t y with the "vague sense of being s p e c i a l people embarking on a s p e c i a l mission . . . the irony was that there were tens of thousands of young people heading i n the same d i r e c t i o n . . . the expectations were high, and the u n i v e r s i t i e s were not prepared to d e l i v e r " (Jasen, 1989, p. 250). They had been too p r e c i p i t o u s l y transformed, "from e l i t e (in the sense of serving a small minority of the population, who would be distinguished by t h e i r degrees), to mass i n s t i t u t i o n s " ( Jasen, 1989, p. 250). L e v i t t describes the sense of disillusionment: Students who had been expecting a f i r s t - c l a s s passage on a luxury l i n e r soon discovered that they were second- class passengers on a tramp steamer, (p. 34) Horowitz (1987) points out that some professors also added the f u e l of encouragement to growing student unrest: "inspired by modernism, they saw the humane t r a d i t i o n as questioning the culture, not confirming i t " (p. 224-5). Jasen (1989) provides examples which convey the f r u s t r a t i o n f e l t by college students of the s i x t i e s : "We . . . protest the impersonality of the u n i v e r s i t y to a point where the statement seems t r i t e " , wrote a p o l i t i c a l science student at the University of B r i t i s h Columbia i n 19 68 . . . "We are confused by inconsistencies of p r i n c i p l e s i n our u n i v e r s i t i e s which degrade them and t h e i r p o s i t i o n i n society", wrote a student at the University of V i c t o r i a . . . "We are t o l d that the pursuit of knowledge and the betterment of men are our prime goals, yet our education i s determined to a large extent by demands of the economy and job expectations". (Jasen 1989, p. 251) 145 The u n i v e r s i t y seemed to become a scapegoat for a l l the i l l s of society: Poverty, p o l l u t i o n , the Vietnam war, American domination of the Canadian economy—all these sources of discontent now seemed to implicate the university, which was described as a mere arm of a huge " m i l i t a r y i n d u s t r i a l complex". (Jasen, 1989, p. 2 52) Student d i s s a t i s f a c t i o n often struck a responding chord i n society. Jasen (1989) points out that: A sympathetic Toronto Star E d i t o r i a l observed that, "our children are growing up i n a world where there are thousands of atom bombs, where our lakes and r i v e r s are polluted, where the r i c h get ri c h e r and the poor get poorer, where there i s a massive population explosion, and we're not saying anything about i t i n our courses". (Toronto Star, 12 Nov. 1968 i n Jasen, p. 254) F i n a l l y , Horowitz (1987) points out, there were three t r i g g e r i n g experiences to the United States campus revolts of 1969-70: 1) the s i t - i n s of the C i v i l Rights movements; 2) the expanding age cohort of the baby-boomers, which both separated and united them as a group against the older generation; and f i n a l l y , 3) the Vietnam war, which threatened college men with the dra f t upon graduation 1. Student protest reached i t s height during the 1969-70 academic year: "there was a t o t a l of 9,408 outbreaks; 731 of them led to the intervention of p o l i c e and arrests; 410 involved damage to property; and 230, physical violence" (Horowitz, p. 234). Horowitz (1987) points out that t h i s threat was exacerbated in the mid-sixties when the government "with the intention of ending student deferments for those with low grades - asked colleges and u n i v e r s i t i e s to supply rank l i s t s of students" (p. 233) . 146 Jasen describes the rationale for Canadian protests i n l i g h t of those i n the United States: In Canada, i t (the New Left) originated with the peace movement but was deeply affected by the American c i v i l - r i g h t s cause, so that by the 1960s the p l i g h t of minorities and the poor was a primary concern. The war in Vietnam, though not "our" war, f u e l l e d the movement's growth i n the second half of the decade and contributed to a complex v i s i o n of Canada as both a partner i n and a v i c t i m of American imperialism, (p. 252) As well, Jasen (1989) points out that Canadian student protests had three major domestic causes: 1) u n r e a l i s t i c f a i t h i n c o r r e l a t i o n between the economy and education ("both government and the private sector assumed that the gross national product would increase i n proportion to the country's investment i n higher learning"); 2) the f a i t h that the study of the arts "was a powerful agent i n the protection of our way of l i f e against communism"; and 3) the confusion between m i l i t a r y and c u l t u r a l defenses ("our m i l i t a r y defenses must be made secure, but our c u l t u r a l defenses 2 equally demand attention; the two cannot be separated" ). The in e v i t a b l e r e s u l t was that, "by the end of the 1950's, knowledge of a l l kinds was equated, quite simply, with power" (Jasen, 1989, p. 249). In an i n t e r e s t i n g synthesis of c o l l e g i a l and national i n t e r e s t s , student c r i t i c i s m of the Canadian u n i v e r s i t y curriculum pivoted on the concern for both national as well Canadian Royal Commission on the National Development i n the Arts, Letters and Sciences, 1949-51, Report. pt 2 (Ottawa, 1951), p. 274-5 i n Jasen (1989). 147 as minority group i d e n t i t y . Woodcock (in Jasen) states that "on every Canadian campus the issue of the curriculum has been raised and the authoritarian a c t i v i s t (students) . . . have demanded that courses be relevant to contemporary issues" (Jansen, 1989, p. 254-5). However, others seemed less sympathetic to the students' causes. In the University of Toronto's Vars i t y . Bruce Campbell writes that: "the primary concern of students today i s establishing s e l f - i d e n t i t y " . Lawrence Veysey was another who suggested that "the tendency during the s i x t i e s to see arts courses as 'therapy' could lead to the assumption that the aim of education i s to study oneself more than anything else" (Jasen, p. 256). Jasen describes the student's corresponding d i s s a t i s f a c t i o n with t r a d i t i o n a l emphasis i n English classrooms: each work was part of a u n i f i e d l i t e r a r y canon, and the c r i t i c - p r o f e s s o r was i t s legitimate interpreter . . . for the already disaffected, a course i n English l i t e r a t u r e tended to reinforce the suspicion that most professors did not seek relevance i n t h e i r teaching but a c t i v e l y avoided i t . (p. 261) Ravitch and Finn (1987) point out that since the mid- s i x t i e s , there was increasing pressure from minority groups as well as "from those who, on p r i n c i p l e , opposed the very idea of a canon, and proposed a l i t e r a t u r e that was contemporary and relevant to t h e i r own l i v e s " (p. 10). The Anglo-American Seminar on the teaching and learning of English was held at Dartmouth College i n 1966. 148 Squire (1971) points out that the r e s u l t of t h i s conference was the conviction that "active, emotional engagement i n the l i t e r a r y experience was seen as a major goal and not one in c o n f l i c t with the genuine c r i t i c a l response" (p. 223) . Squire c i t e s Arthur Eastman's comment on the seminar that t h i s trend amounts to "a preference for power rather than knowledge, for experience rather than information, for engagement rather than c r i t i c i s m " (Eastman i n Squire, 1971, p. 223) . Marckwardt explains: A l l of t h i s does not imply that the s e n s i t i v i t y to l i t e r a t u r e and the adroitness i n the use of language that we seek cannot be achieved by pouring them into empty vessels, that they w i l l come about only through engagement and exercise, and that the idea of exercise without engagement i s f r u i t l e s s (Marckwardt i n Squire, 1971, p. 223) Rosenblatt's (1938) Literature as exploration i s reissued towards the end of the decade (1968), most probably, as she hypothesizes, "as one of the signs of the growing reaction against the New C r i t i c i s m " (Rosenblatt, 1990, p. 103) . Drewwel and DeLisle (1969), who studied the undergraduate curriculum requirements at 322 i n s t i t u t i o n s over the ten-year period, suggest an increased i n t e r e s t i n rh e t o r i c . They observe that while "formal requirements i n English composition, l i t e r a t u r e and speech have decreased" during the s i x t i e s , "the use of proficiency t e s t s for meeting requirements i n writing, speech, and foreign language has increased" (p. 30). 149 The 1960's saw the undergraduate English course offerings increase from t h i r t y - e i g h t to f i f t y - t h r e e at the University of B r i t i s h Columbia (Calendar: 1959-60 ,pp. 107- 111; and Calendar: 1969-70. pp. 51-54). Hubert (1989) sees the s i x t i e s as a turning point i n Anglo-Canadian English studies. This i s suggested by the increasing d i v e r s i t y of courses offered by the end of the decade. These included, at McGill University: l i n g u i s t i c s , l i t e r a r y theory, African and Yiddish as well as Canadian and American l i t e r a t u r e s , and f i l m (Hubert, pp. 334-5). Hubert a t t r i b u t e s the increase i n in t e r e s t i n communication and r h e t o r i c to the r i s i n g c u l t u r a l b e l i e f that "the creation of knowledge i t s e l f i s intimately r e l a t e d to the human use of language" (p. 351). I t would be s u r p r i s i n g i f the endemic s o c i a l commitment to re-examination and r e b e l l i o n did not f i n d correspondences i n research. A. Research: return to the reader In the s i x t i e s there are t h i r t y - f i v e studies exploring college and adult reader responses to l i t e r a t u r e found i n the Purves and Beach (1972) bibliography. There had been only twenty-one i n the f i f t i e s . 1. Research conceptions of l i t e r a t u r e During the s i x t i e s , l i t e r a t u r e was represented i n research by fragments of poetry and plays, researcher-devised s t o r i e s and paragraphs, the text of a play, and the f i r s t 150 complete published short s t o r i e s used with readers, rather than authors, as i n the previous decade (See Appendix 3, Table 6). There i s a var i e t y of genres used. Poetry i s used i n t h i r t e e n (37%) of the studies. As well, researchers use: 1) novels (Wilson, 1963; Holdsworth, 1964); 2) prose passages (Carol, 1960; Mahoney, 1960; Nikiforova, 1960; and Hinze, 1961); 3) a var i e t y of genres (Ingram, 1967; Shirley, 1966); 4) dramatic text (Bleich (1969); and 5) short s t o r i e s (Kingston and White, 19 67; Smith, 1968; Chopin and Purves, 1969; and Ostoff, 1969). F i n a l l y , Saper (1967) uses with his patients actual case h i s t o r i e s as " l i t e r a t u r e " . Thus, poetry i s the most predominant single genre i n t h i s decade, although the v a r i e t y of other genres i s p l e n t i f u l . The poetry includes such works as Donne's "The Good Morrow" and Frost's "Stopping by woods on a snowy evening" (Lawson, 1968; Kamman, 1966). Short s t o r i e s include Josephine Johnson's "Alexander to the park" (Smith, 1968), Simpson's "I starved f o r science" (Kingston and White, 1967) and Gorki's "My childhood" (Choppin and Purves, 1969). Novels included Trumbo's Johnny got his gun (Holdsworth, 1968), Salinger's Catcher i n the rye f Steinbeck's Grapes of wrath, and Hemingway's A farewell to arms (Wilson, 1963). Drama i s represented by the text of Pinter's The Caretaker and Macbeth. Act I Scene VII (Lawson, 1968). 151 When c i t e d , the c r i t e r i a for choosing p a r t i c u l a r works seemed to r e f l e c t the orientation of the researcher towards either text, or reader, or else merely the a v a i l a b i l i t y of the work for use i n the research. At one extreme, many researchers do not c i t e any c r i t e r i a for the s e l e c t i o n of l i t e r a t u r e (Nikiforova, 1960; Kingston and White, 1967; Rosenblatt, 1964; Rees and Pederson, 1965). At the other extreme i s a researcher such as Lawson (1968). In his construction of a poetry t e s t , his c r i t e r i a are complex. His s e l e c t i o n i s r e s t r i c t e d to 'familiar' and 'complete' fragments by both American and B r i t i s h authors, which represent both several h i s t o r i c a l periods as well as various degrees of q u a l i t y and d i f f i c u l t y . F i n a l l y , these fragments must "lend themselves to framing questions". Other text-based researchers seem concerned only that the work was published. Roberts (1968) uses one of h i s own published poems. Reader-oriented researchers have c r i t e r i a which range from the s t r i c t l y i n d i v i d u a l to the more general. For example, as i s t y p i c a l i n psychotherapy studies, Edgar and Hazley chose poems "that expressed feelings thought to be troubl i n g members of the group" (1969a), or those which "symbolically represented feelings that the patients were unable to deal with" (1969b, p. 29). Less extreme are researchers such as Holdsworth (1968), who specify content of the story as well as brevity and s i m p l i c i t y of vocabulary. On the other hand, Hansson (1964) s p e c i f i e s d i f f i c u l t y as a 152 c r i t e r i o n , i n order that a reader may be challenged. A f i n a l example i s Livingston's (1969) choice of Robert Frost's four- l i n e , " I t bids pretty f a i r " , because of i t s brevity and also because i t "exemplifies poetic d i c t i o n " . 2. Research conceptions of response Of the t h i r t y - f i v e studies i n t h i s decade, s i x (17%) tend s l i g h t l y more towards the text, e s p e c i a l l y standardized t e s t i n g of l i t e r a t u r e . Nineteen (54%) tend toward the reader, focusing on attitudes, behavior or personality as a factor in response and nine (26%) are response-centred, focusing on the components or dimensions of response, process of developing response or e f f e c t s of d i f f e r e n t teaching methods. Thus, although the bulk of the studies focus on the reader's personality, behavior or attitudes, the response-centred studies which focus on the process of developing response are growing i n number. a. Text-orientations Although not as strong as reader-or response- orientations, text-orientations of response to l i t e r a t u r e are s t i l l important as part of research on response to l i t e r a t u r e (See Appendix 5, Table 6). Betsky (1960) discusses the importance of l i t e r a t u r e to general culture. Other purposes of text orientations include: 1) a comparison of open-ended and multiple-choice items dealing with l i t e r a r y understanding 153 (Choppin and Purves, 1969); 2) an exploration of components of prose s t y l e , as rated by competent judges ( C a r r o l l , 1960); and 3) the devising of a t e s t to measure understanding of poetry (Lawson, 1968). F i n a l l y , Roberts (1968) tests the hypothesis that the hearing or reading of a poem w i l l have an immediate e f f e c t on the subject's c r e a t i v i t y . His subjects are given f o r t y - f i v e minutes to draw pictures before and a f t e r being exposed to the poem. The r e s u l t s are then judged by a panel of experts. Thus, although text-orientations are few i n research of the s i x t i e s , the focus among them i s generally on evaluation of l i t e r a r y appreciation or comprehension. b. Reader-orientations During t h i s decade, there i s continued growth i n the number of studies with a reader-based emphasis. These studies examine the power of the reader's personality both to shape and to be influenced by the work i n a profound way. Studies which emphasize the growth of the reader's personal development and insight are the bibliotherapy studies or reports of studies. These include studies such as Edgar and Hazley's "Validation of poetry therapy as a group therapy technique" (1969a) and "Poetry therapy with h o s p i t a l i z e d schizophrenics" (1969b), Saper's (1967) "Bibliotherapy as an adjunct to group discussion" and Riggs 1 (1968) extensive Bibliotherapy: an annotated bibliography. 154 Other studies are reader-oriented i n t h e i r focus on the reader's preferences or personality i n r e l a t i o n to response. For example, Kingston and White (1967) explore "The r e l a t i o n s h i p of readers' self-concept and personality components to semantic meanings perceived i n the protagonist of a reading s e l e c t i o n " . In Mahoney's (1960), "The l i t e r a t u r e empathy t e s t : development of a procedure for d i f f e r e n t i a t i n g between 'good empathizers' and 'poor empathizers'", he has h i s subjects read d i f f e r e n t selections to "get a f e e l " for the personality portrayed. Following t h i s , they answer multiple-choice questions as they believe the f i c t i o n a l characters would answer them. F i n a l l y Shirley's (1966) d i s s e r t a t i o n , completed under the guidance of Ruth Strang, explores by means of a short answer questionnaire and case study interviews, "the influence of reading on concepts, attitudes and behavior of tenth, eleventh and twelfth grade students". c. Response-orientations Response-oriented studies within the college classroom s e t t i n g provide increasing evidence of a s s i m i l a t i o n of reader- and text-orientations. Both the context and the process are becoming important as i t influences response. For example, Kamman's (1966), "Verbal complexity and preferences i n poetry" explore the e f f e c t s of d i f f e r e n t contexts of discussion i n preferences of poetic s t y l e . Wilson's (1963) 155 "Responses of college freshmen to three novels" i s one of the f i r s t experiments to use novels for the purpose of comparing the e f f e c t s of d i f f e r e n t modes of response. He investigates the r e l a t i o n s h i p between the study of l i t e r a t u r e and the dimensions of the evoked response. This study compares free responses written by college students, before and a f t e r the study of three novels. Wilson centers aspects of the response i n h i s categories of coding: l i t e r a r y judgment, narrational, i n t e r p r e t a t i o n a l , associational self-involvement, p r e s c r i p t i v e and miscellaneous. ' Bleich (1969), i n h i s a r t i c l e , "Emotional o r i g i n s of l i t e r a r y meaning" focuses on the process of developing response through the analysis of a written free association to a dramatic text. Hansson (1964) uses a semantic d i f f e r e n t i a l to explore the dimensions of response evoked i n various readers. And Rosenblatt (1964) describes the free written response of students to Robert Frost's " I t bids pretty f a i r " . One of the most s i g n i f i c a n t contributions to subsequent research on response i s Purves and Ripperre's (1968) Elements of writing about a l i t e r a r y work. This coding analysis was derived from analyses of written responses of c r i t i c s , students and teachers. I t was published the same year as the reissuing of Rosenblatt's Literature as exploration. Each of these works seems to have been used i n subsequent research to explore the new research emphasis on 156 the response i t s e l f and the force of the reader's perceptions to shape the l i t e r a r y work. Purves• methodology arose out of the need to describe the process or the constituents of writing about l i t e r a t u r e . . . Instead of considering a theory of l i t e r a t u r e or one of the l i t e r a r y work, we had to consider the person who read the work and wrote about his reading, (p. 2) The elements he derives "should include a l l the p o s s i b i l i t i e s that l i e open to the essay writer each time he confronts a l i t e r a r y work" (p. 3). Importantly, Purves does not r e s t r i c t these to c r i t i c a l , but also includes " s u b c r i t i c a l " and " n o n c r i t i c a l " elements (p. 3). The categories are as follows: 1) engagement-involvement, "often the object of pedagogical disdain, since i t can be highly subjective and unassailable by l o g i c or even persuasion"; 2) perception, "analytic, synthetic or c l a s s i f i c a t o r y " ; 3) interpretation, "the attempt to f i n d meaning i n the work, to generalize about i t , to draw inferences from i t " ; and 4) evaluation, "the writer's judgment of a work, either personal or objective" (pp. 6-7). I t i s the acknowledgment of the f i r s t category, engagement-involvement which i s so revolutionary. Purves goes on to explain of t h i s category, emphasizing the a f f e c t i v e roots of the cognitive: " c e r t a i n l y that form of involvement that i s the writer's assent to the work's existence, to the work as both l i t e r a r y event and l i t e r a r y fact, underlies a l l c r i t i c i s m " (p. 6). This acceptance of the reader's f i r s t i n s t i n c t s about the work marks an important turning point i n assumptions about response: 157 I t i s as i f engagement has been viewed as peripheral when i t may be at the very heart of our understanding of the meanings readers negotiate. (Tierney and Gee, 1990, p. 204) This c l a s s i f i c a t i o n scheme, with i t s acknowledgment of the c e n t r a l i t y of the r o l e of engagement i n response, answers such a profound research need, that Applebee's (1978) entire bibliography i s r e s t r i c t e d to studies which use t h i s method of analysis. The Nikiforova (1960) experiment, although i t includes an exploration of the response process, i s worthy of mention because i t i s the l a s t study in the research which focuses exclu s i v e l y on physiological processes. Nikoforova had subjects either vocalize pairs of words or s h i f t a rheostat on and of f while they were s i l e n t l y reading a passage. The purpose of t h i s confusing exercise was to discover the extent to which the motor and verbal tasks interfered with the subject's perception of the text. This b e h a v i o r i s t i c emphasis seems e n t i r e l y out of step with the main currents of the decade. I t s lone presence emphasizes the change i n conceptions of response from the early days of exploration of pure sounds and rhythm of language and vast d i v e r s i t y i n conceptions of both response and l i t e r a t u r e . The trend has been a gradual movement from an examination of the text, the e f f e c t of single words, and general d i v e r s i t y i n the research to a focusing on the reader, an acknowledgment that h i s emotions influence what he derives from the text and the 158 embracing of a new orientation i n which the context, the transaction, the r h e t o r i c a l and s o c i a l process themselves constitute "the poem". IV. Summary Research conceptions of l i t e r a t u r e i n these decades, compared to those i n the f i r s t decades of the century, have completely l o s t t h e i r meaning as r e f e r r i n g to meaningless s y l l a b l e s . Generally, l i t e r a t u r e includes excerpts from short s t o r i e s , exposition, and researcher-devised or researcher- revised s t o r i e s . Innovations concerning conceptions of l i t e r a t u r e during these years include: E l l i s ' s (1951) use of short s t o r i e s as projective documents of authors; Saper's (1967) use of s e l f - s e l e c t e d actual case h i s t o r i e s ; and Matson's (1953) use of theatre performance. Omitted during t h i s t r a n s i t i o n period are newspaper and magazine a r t i c l e s used during the f o r t i e s . Innovations of response measures during t h i s t r a n s i t i o n period include the f i r s t use by Hansson (1964) of Osgoode's (1957) semantic d i f f e r e n t i a l . Another innovation i s Roberts' (1968) use of creative drawing as an indicator of response. There was as well the continued use i n response modes of group discussion i n the classroom, written short answers or multiple choice te s t s , as well as free responses, both o r a l and written. 159 During these two decades, text-based conceptions of response continue to be challenged by the number of reader- oriented studies both inside and outside the classroom. In addition, response-orientations are growing during t h i s t r a n s i t i o n phase of research. In the s i x t i e s , the growing importance of the reader's context, goals, and process of developing response to l i t e r a t u r e i s accompanied by the diminishing value of the text and l i t t l e mention of the author. V. Conclusion Research conceptions of response and l i t e r a t u r e during these two decades contrast markedly with those during the f i r s t four decades. The number of studies continues to increase. Pedagogical bibliographies s t i l l include non- pedagogical studies with schizophrenics and troubled adults. However, the emphasis on the reader has begun to permeate research i n the college classrooms of the s i x t i e s . During both of these decades, New C r i t i c a l approaches are generally dominant i n the classroom. Research conceptions of response do not strongly r e f l e c t t h i s pedagogical i n t e r e s t . Conceptions of response seem conservative during the f i f t i e s , i n that text and reader-orientations seem about balanced. During the s i x t i e s , on the other hand, there i s a decided turn toward the reader, e s p e c i a l l y i n the non- pedagogical studies with adult patients. I t seems that 160 research conceptions thus r e f l e c t e d , i n the f i f t i e s , the general s o c i e t a l mood of conservatism and i n the s i x t i e s , the concern with relevance and s e l f - i n t e r e s t . I bl CHAPTER SIX: EMPOWERMENT OF THE READER (1970-89) I. Introduction 161 II . S o c i a l and pedagogical conditions: 1970-9 . . . 162 A. Research: emphasis on response 169 1. Research conceptions of l i t e r a t u r e . . 17 0 2. Research conceptions of response . . . 172 II I . S o c i a l and pedagogical conditions: 1980-9 . . . 180 A. Research: Context predominates 185 1. Research conceptions of l i t e r a t u r e . . 185 2. Research conceptions of response . . . 187 IV. Summary 200 V. Conclusions 202 I. Introduction After the tumult of the previous decade, i t could be expected that the seventies would develop the answers demanded by the various r a d i c a l uprisings. However, as with the previous outbursts of violence, the ensuing sobriety of the seventies came quickly i n many areas: economics, natural resources, government, and education. Research of the seventies, s i m i l a r to that of the f o r t i e s , did not mirror s o c i e t a l hard times, but instead balanced i t with steady optimism and a p r o l i f e r a t i o n of studies. The eighties, and t h i s i s an admittedly myopic perception, seemed to end with increased s o c i e t a l optimism. There appeared to be a more noticeable concern for the future, suggested by the emphasis on saving the environment. In addition, there was a convergence of Eastern and Western p o l i t i c a l ideologies. In research, the move i s towards the increasing empowerment of the reader. 162 I I . S o c i a l and pedagogical conditions: 1970-9 This was a decade that was marked with general disillusionment, r i s i n g i n t e r e s t rates and a sluggish economy. In Canada, the decade included events such as: the Canada-USSR Hockey series (1972); Trudeau's national o i l - p r i c i n g p o l i c y (1973) ; the e l e c t i o n of Rene' LeVesque and the ru l e of the P a r t i Que'becois (1976) ; and the Montreal Olympic Games (1976). By the late 1970s, minorities "were more v i s i b l e i n Canada than i n the United States, p a r t i c u l a r l y i n the large metropolitan areas of Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver" (Bennett, 1989, p. 765). However, t h i s immigration was not always peaceful and the image or hope of r a c i a l harmony was often shattered by sporadic violence (Bennett, 1989, p. 765). In the United States, energy and resource shortages (national gas crunch, 1975; gasoline shortage, 1979), and environmental problems contributed to a " l i m i t s of growth" philosophy that affected p o l i t i c s . Despite i s o l a t e d incidents such as the f i r s t supersonic f l i g h t of the B r i t i s h Concorde 002 i n 1970, suspicion of technology and the s c a r c i t y of f i n a n c i a l resources caused major projects, such as the general adoption of supersonic transportation, to be abandoned. Mistrust of big government weakened the support for government reform plans among l i b e r a l s . School busing and r a c i a l quotas, previously the norm, were now opposed (for example, the Bakke decision, 1978). The defeat of the United 163 States i n Indochina (1975); revelations of CIA misdeeds (Rockefeller Commission report June 1975) and the Watergate scandals (1974) resulted i n the reduction of the United States' capacity to influence world a f f a i r s . Revelations of Soviet crimes and Russian intervention i n A f r i c a resulted i n a r e v i v a l of anti-communist sentiment. A severe recession occurred i n the United States and Europe during 1974-5. This was p r e c i p i t a t e d by a huge increase i n the p r i c e of o i l i n 1973. Business investment and spending for research declined. Severe i n f l a t i o n plagued many countries (25% i n B r i t a i n and 19% i n the United States). However, uni v e r s i t y attendance continued to increase. Harris (1988) gives an example of the burgeoning college enrolment figures: although as early as 1956, the University of Toronto had agreed to double i t s f u l l - t i m e enrolment by 1970, thus bringing i t to 24,000 students, by 1970, the actual enrolment was 26,000 and by 1975 had increased to 30,000. (pp. 146-7) As i n Canada, Horowitz (1987) points out that "more Americans than ever before attended college": In 1979 almost 11.7 m i l l i o n entered, 42 per cent more than the almost 8 m i l l i o n ten years before. More than h a l f held jobs . . . a greater proportion were black, female and adults over twenty-five . . . by 197 6 students thought i t more important to acquire " t r a i n i n g and s k i l l s for an occupation" and get a "detailed grasp of a special f i e l d " than to get along with people or formulate l i f e goals, t h e i r strongest preferences i n 1969. (p. 250) 164 The 1970 September class of college freshmen regarded protest as a normal part of college l i f e . This assumption changed dramatically i n the spring: The k i l l i n g s at Kent State University and Jackson State College i n May 1970 evoked an outpouring of protest unmatched i n e a r l i e r periods . . . i n the f a l l , however, an era had ended. The termination of the d r a f t and the winding down of the war, repression, the death of innocents, s e l f - d e s t r u c t i v e forces within youthful radicalism, a turn i n the economy, and ennui worked t h e i r way. Protest stopped . . . students suddenly took to t h e i r books and began a period i n t h e i r h i s t o r y that has persisted. (Horowitz, p. 19) As they returned to t h e i r studies, college students of the seventies dropped t h e i r e a r l i e r concerns for relevance and s o c i e t a l well-being and concentrated on enhancing t h e i r competitive advantage for professional schools. Horowitz observes that "the demand that l i f e and learning j o i n was no longer heard; and students separated t h e i r private pleasures from academic work" (p. 20). For the students of the seventies, college had become "work". Yuppies characterized the seventies as Hippies had characterized the s i x t i e s . The s i x t i e s ' protests and active concern for society were replaced by the pursuit of private rather than public goals. Jobs, rather than r i g h t s , were the focus. Schools continued to come under severe attack: "competency t e s t i n g appeared i n the 1970*s, p a r t l y as a r e s u l t of a new - or renewed - way of thinking about what was to be learned and how i t was to be measured" (Button and Provenzo, 1989, p. 315). 165 Further, the u n i v e r s i t i e s were not l e f t untouched by the economic c r i s i s : "the f i s c a l squeeze experienced by u n i v e r s i t i e s i n the 1970s and 1980s has been mirrored i n the economic c r i s i s that has affected the public sector as a whole" (Newson and Buchbinder, 1988, p. 9). In addition, the Carnegie Foundation (1977) pointed out the increasingly close r e l a t i o n between the job market and the humanities. This was suggested by the trend for occupations to require higher educational attainments "without s p e c i f i c regard for occupational performance" accompanied by a second trend for occupations to be upgraded "through educational programs that improve technical performance" (p. 36). C u l l e r (1988) describes what he considers to be "the other major event i n our period, which may transform c r i t i c i s m as d e c i s i v e l y as the New C r i t i c i s m " (p. 14). I t i s the impact, beginning i n the late s i x t i e s , of a p l u r a l i t y of c r i t i c a l perspectives, including " l i n g u i s t i c s , feminism, psychoanalysis, Marxism, structuralism, deconstructionism" (p. 15). Although these developments began i n 1966 "with a conference at Johns Hopkins, which brought together L e v i - strauss, Barthes, Lacan, Derrida, Poulet and others", the greatest impact of these events i s not f e l t u n t i l the 1970s (p. 17). The most prominent argument was that of deconstructionism, which developed out of a philosophical project of Jacques Derrida. C u l l e r explains: 166 To deconstruct the h i e r a r c h i c a l oppositions of Western metaphysics i s to reveal them as c o n s t r u c t i o n s — i d e o l o g i c a l impositions—by showing through a close reading of philosophical texts how they are undermined by the discourses that a f f i r m or r e l y on them. (p. 20) Barbara Johnson (1980) explains that deconstructionism i s a "careful teasing out of warring forces of s i g n i f i c a t i o n within the text i t s e l f 1 1 (p. 5) . Bogdan (1990b) observes that: deconstruction ensures the death - and b u r i a l - of the communication model; and i t does so by exposing as language games a l l philosophical pretensions to uncovering truth . . . the text i s important for what i t does not say . . . the assumed correspondence between words and truth i s a myth . . . (p. 159) Cul l e r (1988) suggests that "a c o r o l l a r y of t h i s ( c r i t i c a l p l u r a l i t y ) has been the expansion of the domain of l i t e r a r y studies to include many concerns previously remote from i t " (p. 15) such as psychology, anthropology and philosophy. He points out that t h i s "loose, doubtless confusing i n t e r d i s c i p l i n a r i t y . . . might be conceived as a new, expanded r h e t o r i c : a study of textual structures and strategies, i n t h e i r r e l a t i o n s to systems of s i g n i f i c a t i o n and to human subjects" (p. 17). Hunt (1990) suggests, " i t was necessary to consider l i t e r a r y works of art not just i n connection with each other, but with a l l discourse" (p. 101). Hunt describes the v i r t u a l revolution i n language comprehension research at the same time: Within a few years, e n t i r e l y new, al t e r n a t i v e theories of language - examples include the text grammars of writers l i k e van Dijk (1972), the s o i c i o l i n g u i s t i c approach of a William Labov (1972), and the new i n t e r e s t i n the pragmatic or "speech-act" theory of John Austin (1962) - 167 were being generated, theories that attempted to obviate what de Beaugrande c a l l s "the context-free abstractness" of the older methods, and to take account of the importance of s o c i a l i n t e r a c t i o n i n language groups, (pp. 96-7) He observes that text l i n g u i s t s such as van Dijk and Kintsch (1983) nominate 1970 as a watershed year because of the widespread r e a l i z a t i o n that i t was actual language use i n s o c i a l context, rather than the grammatical analysis of abstract or ide a l systems which should be "the empirical object of l i n g u i s t i c theories" (Kintsch and van Dijk i n Hunt, 1990, p. 97). Hunt points out that t h i s trend was accompanied by a renewed inter e s t i n the importance of story grammars (Mandler and Johnson, 1977; and Stein and Glenn, 1979), as well as s c r i p t s , frames and schemata (Schank and Abelson, 1977) i n exploration of the understanding of both expository and narrative texts. At the same time, there was a general tendency i n cognitive psychology to move away from the word and sentence l e v e l s towards larger issues of understanding: "the basic unit of understanding came to be not merely the discourse or the text, but the dyad of text and reader" (Hunt, 1990, p. 97). At the same time as these important convergences were taking place i n the areas of l i t e r a r y theory, reading and l i n g u i s t i c s , college English departments found i t increasingly necessary to focus on writing s k i l l s as well as courses i n l i t e r a r y theory. Hubert (1989) sees the year 1970 as o f f e r i n g a "substantial expansion . . . of language and 168 l i n g u i s t i c s , composition and r h e t o r i c a l theory, and new courses i n communication theory as well as i n l i t e r a r y theory". He concludes that the college English curriculum had " c l e a r l y s h i f t e d toward a balance between B r i t i s h and non- B r i t i s h l i t e r a t u r e , and between poetics and r h e t o r i c " (p. 340- 1). In 1974, at the University of B r i t i s h Columbia, the composition examination was introduced into English 100 i n response to the concern expressed by members of the Department and by colleagues i n other departments over the problem of student l i t e r a c y . At that time, many students coming to UBC were poorly prepared i n composition, and the s i t u a t i o n was made more complicated by a large i n f l u x of students for whom English was a second language. ("History of the English Composition Examination", p. 1) In American u n i v e r s i t i e s , s i m i l a r changes were occurring: Prestigious u n i v e r s i t i e s i n s t i t u t e remedial and 'basic' courses i n composition and sometimes impose a competency te s t to make sure that students have acquired the s k i l l s t h e i r grades imply. College English issues a c a l l to the profession to submit manuscripts on the question of basics. (Memering, 1978, p. 553) Rothman (1977) describes the s i t u a t i o n at the University of C a l i f o r n i a , Santa Cruz: I t became cle a r that either UCSC was going to have to admit only those students who were competent writers (thus shrinking the incoming class by maybe 60%) or h i r e more people to teach writing courses, (p. 484) Changing needs of the students are also suggested by trends i n the college textbook publishing industry: Publishers are giving increasing attention to the " r e a d a b i l i t y " of textbooks, with the r e s u l t that i n some cases texts are being prepared for college students whose reading s k i l l s are those of eighth- or ninth-graders. According to publishers interviewed by The Chronicle of 169 Higher Education,, the market for "rigorous materials" - defined as those written at or above the twelfth grade l e v e l has been dwindling. (Carnegie Foundation, 1977, p. 44) Kolb (in press) describes the r e f l e c t i o n of t h i s change i n College English l i t e r a t u r e anthologies, which are often the basis of freshmen l i t e r a t u r e courses. As late as 1957, when the f i r s t e d i t i o n of Norton's The American t r a d i t i o n i n l i t e r a t u r e was published, Kolb (in press) states that: the editors . . . spoke confidently i n the preface about the task of se l e c t i n g from a national inheritance the works that would best represent i t s nature and i t s values . . . Making ' l i t e r a r y merit our f i n a l c r i t e r i o n for se l e c t i o n ' , the editors assured t h e i r readers that •masterpieces endure', (no page number) Kolb documents the gradual change over the ensuing twenty year period, noting that the "newness" of the 1976 anthology stemmed "not from reconsideration or s e l e c t i v i t y or choice", but e n t i r e l y from addition. He notes that the volume seems to be saying, "whatever the t r a d i t i o n may be, . . .we've got i t here somewhere". Ravitch and Finn (1987) concur: Today, there i s assuredly no canon, and no one could venture a confident guess as to what i s read by American students at any point i n t h e i r schooling. Many college professors believe that t h e i r students have read very l i t t l e ; or that they have read nothing i n common, which i s more l i k e l y the case. (p. 10) A. Research (1970-79): emphasis on response Unlike the s o c i e t a l and student disillusionment of t h i s decade, research i n the seventies continues the s h i f t towards a response-orientation. There are f i f t y studies i n 170 t h i s decade, as compared with t h i r t y - f i v e during the s i x t i e s (See Appendix 3, Table 7). 1. Research conceptions of l i t e r a t u r e Short s t o r i e s are used i n 18 (36%) of the studies. Poetry i s the second most popular genre, used i n 17 (34%) of the studies. Three researchers use dramatic text (Bleich, 1971; Holland, 1977; and DeVries, 1973). Two studies use non- f i c t i o n a l works (Alsbrook, 1970; Kigar, 1978). Weber (1973) adds films used i n a college f i l m course. F i n a l l y , Cornaby (1974) and Peters and Blues (1975) use more than one genre. Cornaby uses two novels, one short story and one poem. Peters and Blues use fragments of novels and short s t o r i e s . Reasons given for the use of p a r t i c u l a r works seem to f a l l into three categories: 1) they s a t i s f i e d the demand c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of the experiment; 2) the researcher had access to a class using t h i s work; and f i n a l l y , 3) the content was considered of intere s t to the reader. An example of the f i r s t category i s explained i n Shedd's (1976) d i s s e r t a t i o n , "The re l a t i o n s h i p between attitude of reader towards women's changing r o l e and response to l i t e r a t u r e which illuminates women's r o l e " . She selects Lessing's "Notes for a case h i s t o r y " and Nathaniel Hawthorne's "My kinsman, Major Molineux" because they illuminate women's perspectives. An example of a selection chosen because the class was avai l a b l e to the researcher i s Green's (1977) d i s s e r t a t i o n , 171 "An invest i g a t i o n of an objective approach and response- centred approach to teaching renaissance poetry i n a survey course". Examples of a combined c r i t e r i a are those c i t e d by Peters and Blues (1978) and Green (1977). Peters and. Blues chose Mark Twain's "A double-barrelled detective story" because i t was " l i k e l y to evoke a number of connotations, a l t e r n a t i v e and plausible explanations" as well as being "of i n t e l l e c t u a l and emotional concern to the subjects". Green (1977) chose two renaissance poems not only because that was the content of the class but also because the p a r t i c u l a r poems "demand a sensory response from t h e i r readers" (p. 5). Other examples of works used include s t o r i e s such as Faulkner's "Rose for Emily" (Holland, 1975) and Shirley Ann Grau's, "The Beach Party" (Beach, 1976). The Cornaby (1974) d i s s e r t a t i o n uses two d i s s i m i l a r novels (Dostoevsky's Crime and Punishment and E.M. Forster's Passage to India). one short story (W.C. Williams' "Use of force") and one poem (Gustavsen's "Locked In"). The poems selected include works such as Byron's "She walks i n beauty" (Hoffman, 1971) and Wallace's "Moving" (Beach 1972). The Green d i s s e r t a t i o n (1977) uses two renaissance narrative poems: Spenser's "Bower of B l i s s " from The Faerie Oueene and Fletcher's "The Bower of Vaine- del i g h t " . Plays read i n research include Shakespeare's Lear (Holland, 1977), The Tempest (DeVries, 1973) and M i l l e r ' s 172 Death of a Salesman (Bleich, 1971). The Alsbrook study uses non-fiction works such as A l l p o r t ' s The nature of prejudice, Martin Luther King's Why we can't wait. Biesanz's Modern Society, and The autobiography of Malcolm X. The Kigar study uses several genres, both fragments as well as longer works. These include works such as: Updike's "A and P"; Ionesco's Rhinoceros; Jaspers' "Is Science E v i l ? " Maslow's "Psychological data and Human values" from Towards a Psychology of Being; and Blake's "Proverbs from H e l l " . 2. Research conceptions of response Of the f i f t y studies of the decade, i t i s the response-oriented studies which are predominant. These studies focus on the process of the response, the nature of the components of response and the e f f e c t s of teacher c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s or d i f f e r e n t teaching techniques on student response. Response-oriented studies constitute 30 (60%) of the studies. Reader-oriented studies explore reading preferences and the e f f e c t s of developmental differences, attitudes and gender on response. They constitute 14 (28%) of the studies. Text-orientations are represented by a research i n t e r e s t i n text variables such as genre, rhythm, and narrative techniques on response. They constitute 5 (10%) of the studies. The f i n a l study i s that of Cooper (1971) which explores general aspects including aspects of the text 173 i t s e l f , methods of teaching i n the classroom, and c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of the reader. Several of these studies are concerned with more than one aspect and would f i t i n more than one category. Generally, i f several age groups were included, the study was c l a s s i f i e d as a reader-oriented study, even i f i t also explored process and stance. There are two predominant c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of research conceptions of response during the seventies. The f i r s t i s the focus on the pedagogical context of the response. For the f i r s t time i n research on response to l i t e r a t u r e , v i r t u a l l y a l l studies use students, teachers, c r i t i c s or professors. There i s l i t t l e mention of studies outside the pedagogical context a f t e r 1970. The second c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of research i n the seventies i s the use of Purves' (1968) Elements of writing about l i t e r a r y response. In 1971, Cooper writes that the foremost content analysis scheme of response was that of I.A. Richards: I.A. Richards' P r a c t i c a l C r i t i c i s m s t i l l stands as the c l a s s i c analysis of the d i f f i c u l t i e s and stumblings and misreadings of p r a c t i c a l c r i t i c s of poetry, i n t h i s case college students . . . (it) i s a d e t a i l e d report on these responses, and i t continues to have great influence on studies of interpretation and response and on the teaching of l i t e r a t u r e i n schools and colleges, (pp. 19- 20) During the research of the seventies, however, Richards * physical text seems to have been replaced by the response of the reader as the object of i n t e r e s t . Richards' 174 exasperation has been replaced with not merely acceptance but in t e r e s t and admiration i n what r e a l readers do (Purves, 1968, p. 6). No fewer than 33 studies during the seventies, of which eighteen include college or adult readers, use these elements i n t h e i r analyses of response, despite Purves' contention that they were not taxonomical. a. Response-orientations Most of the studies of the seventies are response- oriented. They focus on the components of the response, the context, the stance, or the process of the developing response as well as for the f i r s t time i n research, the teacher's response. An example of a study which focuses on the components of the response i s Weber's (1973) "The responses of college students to f i l m " i n which he asks the subjects to give free written responses a f t e r viewing films. In addition, he also explores the process of response with s i x students giving o r a l thoughts while viewing the films. Examples of studies which centre around contextual influences on response explore the differences of various modes of presentation and teaching techniques on response to l i t e r a t u r e . The study of Beach (1972) seeks: 1) to determine the differences between college students' l i t e r a r y responses while reading a poem as measured by a free-association technique (both taped and written) and t h e i r responses i n a group discussion; 2) to determine the ef f e c t s of completing the free association assignment with a poem on a subsequent discussion of that poem as compared to merely reading i t ; and 175 3) to determine the e f f e c t s of each student's theory of l i t e r a r y response, attitude toward the poem or task and conception of the discussion s i t u a t i o n on h i s response, (p. 656A) Grimme (1970) also seeks to i d e n t i f y influences of three teaching approaches (New C r i t i c a l , E xperiential r e f l e c t i v e and E x i s t e n t i a l ) on the responses of freshman college students to l y r i c poetry. Vine (1970) explores the r e l a t i o n s h i p between readers' pre-reading a f f e c t i v e understandings and cognitive understandings. An example of a study which focuses on stance i s that of Mertz (1972), "Responses to l i t e r a t u r e among adolescents, English teachers and college students: a comparative study". In t h i s study, the assignment was to write responses from either a pedagogical or informal perspective. Dollerup's (1970) study, "On reading short s t o r i e s " focuses on the response process. His purpose i s "to establish a basic pattern for the experience of 'intensity' or •tension* i n reading short s t o r i e s since many c r i t i c s speak of these q u a l i t i e s as i f t h e i r existence i s inherent i n a l l works" (p. 445). Dollerup (1971) asks h i s readers to stop and t e l l anything they noticed while reading but i n p a r t i c u l a r about what pertained to tension, intensity, suspense. They were to t e l l where and why they stopped. We stressed the fact that we wanted no " s c h o o l - l i k e " l i t e r a r y analysis, (p. 447) F i n a l l y , and e s p e c i a l l y noteworthy i n the response- oriented studies, i s the exploration of the teacher's response i n studies such as Mertz, (1972), H e i l (1974), Major 176 (1975), Peters and Blues (1975), and McGreal (1976). H e i l (1974) explores the rel a t i o n s h i p among the teacher's personal response to a l i t e r a r y selection, h is behavior when teaching the story and h i s response to student essays on the story. Peters and Blues (1975) hypothesize, " i f learning outcomes of students r e l a t e to teacher c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s , then i t seems probable that teacher i n t e l l e c t u a l d i s p o s i t i o n would re l a t e to student openness i n written response" (p. 128). b. Reader-orientations The second important focus i n research of the seventies i s the orientation towards the reader. V a r i e t i e s of reader-orientations include: 1) those which focus on the attitude and behaviour of the reader as affected by l i t e r a t u r e , or conversely, response to l i t e r a t u r e as i t i s determined by the reader's attitudes; 2) those which focus on the reader's preferences and inte r e s t s ; 3) those which explore developmental aspects of response; and 4) a f i r s t study which explores the e f f e c t of gender on response. An example of a study which focuses on the attitude and behaviour of the reader as affected by the reading of l i t e r a t u r e i s that of Alsbrook (1970). In h i s "Changes i n the ethnocentrism of a select group of college students as a function of bibliotherapy", he investigates the changes i n the ethnocentrism of four groups of adult white students 177 a f t e r reading works such as Raisin i n the sun and The Glass Menagerie. An example of a study which explores how the reader's attitude a f f e c t s h i s response i s that of Menchise (1972). In her d i s s e r t a t i o n , "Racial bias as a determinant of l i t e r a r y preferences and patterns of preference and r e f l e c t i o n of l i t e r a r y works whose author's race i s known", she presents poems to be ranked. One group of poems i s presented to the reader with the poet's photo and one group i s presented without photo. This was done i n order to discover the e f f e c t of knowledge of race on response to the works. A second example of a study which explores the e f f e c t of attitude on response i s that of Auerbach (1974). His d i s s e r t a t i o n i s "The i n t e r a c t i o n between s o c i a l attitude and response to three short s t o r i e s " . He investigates adolescent response to three v i o l e n t and three non-violent short s t o r i e s i n order to determine whether responses were related to i n i t i a l attitudes toward physical aggressiveness and whether attitudes toward violence were influenced by exposure to such l i t e r a t u r e . The influence of the turbulent s i x t i e s i s c l e a r l y evident. Studies exploring issues of race and violence are generally i s o l a t e d to t h i s decade. An example of a study which explores the reader's preferences i s that of Veley (1970). In h i s d i s s e r t a t i o n , "Literature and the emotions: a psychology of l i t e r a r y response", he interviews 180 professors. He asks them to c i t e 178 what they consider to be the most valuable c r i t i c a l work, in the sense of o f f e r i n g insight to a l i t e r a r y work. He then analyzes the c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of these a r t i c l e s . An example of a study which explores developmental aspects of response i s that of Beach and Brunetti (1976), who explore "differences between high school and u n i v e r s i t y students i n t h e i r conception of l i t e r a r y characters". The college students and tenth graders had to rate l i t e r a r y characters i n s t o r i e s , as well as themselves, by means of an adjective c h e c k l i s t . F i n a l l y , i n the various types of reader-oriented studies, i s the single study which explores the e f f e c t of gender on response, that of Holland (1977) which explores the differences between men and women i n t h e i r free written responses to King Lear. Thus reader-orientations are distinguished i n t h i s decade by the fact that i n the research, readers cease to e x i s t outside a pedagogical s e t t i n g . They are teachers, professors or students. As well, t h i s group of studies includes evidence of s o c i e t a l issues of race and violence, which seemed to a t t r a c t the most attention during the v i o l e n t s i x t i e s . c. Text-orientations Text-oriented conceptions include those studies which focus on text variables such as genre, formal elements such as rhythm, and various q u a l i t i e s and values perceived as 179 being i n the text, rather than created by the reader. An example of a study which focuses on the e f f e c t of genre on response i s that of Cornaby's (1974) "A study of the influence of form on responses of twelfth-grade students i n college-preparatory classes to d i s s i m i l a r novels, a short story and a poem". Her purpose i s "to determine the influence of the form of a l i t e r a r y work (not only i t s generic c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s but also general structure, s t y l e tone or l i t e r a r y devices) on the student's response" (p. 15). Another text-oriented study which focuses on formal elements of poetry i s that of Tedford and Synnott (1972) who explore emotional reactions to the rhythms of poetry (iambic, trochaic, anapestic and dactylic) as they were beat out on a snare drum at both a fas t and a slow speed. This study explored the hypothesis that "the structure of the poem may be as important as i t s content, for purposes of therapy as well as aesthetics" (p. 369). An example of a study which focuses on textual q u a l i t i e s i s that of Kigar (1978). He explores the d i f f e r e n t reactions to a v a r i e t y of creative a x i o l o g i c a l and philosophical l i t e r a r y pieces i n h i s study of "the use of value oriented l i t e r a t u r e at the community college l e v e l " . Thus research conceptions are marked during t h i s decade by the increase i n number and d i v e r s i t y of response- oriented studies. Accompanying t h i s s h i f t i n conceptions of response from predominantly reader-orientations during the 180 s i x t i e s , i s a s h i f t towards an almost exclusive research use of poetry and short s t o r i e s . Coincidentally perhaps, with t h i s i n t e r e s t i n the reader as writer, there i s the omission of any studies exploring the author, such as those of E l l i s (1951) or Rosengren (1968). There i s also a general omission of any mention of the author's s t y l e i n the research report of studies, as was common i n the f i r s t h a l f of the decade. There i s occasionally comment on the l i t e r a r y works, but these are generally discussed as works which stand on t h e i r own. There i s v i r t u a l l y no mention of the s p e c i a l g i f t s of the writer or poet. I I I . S o c i e t a l and pedagogical conditions: 1980-9 Double-digit i n f l a t i o n and high unemployment plagued both Canada and the United States at the beginning of the decade. Furthermore, a severe drop i n i n d u s t r i a l output and the government's t i g h t money p o l i c y strongly influenced the defeat of Jimmy Carter and helped the e l e c t i o n of Ronald Reagan as President i n 1980. In Canada, Trudeau was returned to power i n 1980, the "Non" side triumphed i n the Quebec Referendum, and Terry Fox's Marathon of Hope (1980) was launched. By 1983, i n t e r e s t rates and i n f l a t i o n had decreased and during the mid-eighties, North America experienced a stock market boom. However, October 19, 1987 was dubbed "Black Monday" because exchanges experienced the largest one-day stock market decline. Other Canadian 181 highl i g h t s during the decade were the implementation of the National Energy Program, the P a t r i a t i o n of the Canadian Constitution and the Anti-Cruise m i s s i l e t e s t i n g protests. The f i r s t woman Governor General, Jeanne Sauve', was appointed i n 1984, the same year i n which Brian Mulroney's PC party was elected i n a landslide v i c t o r y . The year 1985 was marked by the beginning of Rick Hansen's "Man i n Motion World Tour". This decade also saw the signing of the Free Trade Agreement between Canada and the United States. Although the beginning years of the decade were troublesome for USSR, with three heads of state dying i n o f f i c e (Brezhnev, 1982; Andropov, 1984; Chernenko, 1985), the eighties ended i n astonishing harmony between the East and West with Gorbachev and Reagan i n 1985 pledging a "fresh s t a r t " . In addition, peace was now becoming a way of l i f e i n North America. Some of the more d i s t r e s s i n g h i g h l i g h t s were the Iranian Hostage C r i s i s (1979-81), the Mexico City earthquake (1985) , the Challenger explosion and the Chernobyl disast e r (both i n 1986), the Oliver North scandal (1987), the San Francisco earthquake (1989) and the r e v o l t i n Tianamen Square (1989). More optimistic news included: the Gorbachev and Reagan signing of the m i s s i l e treaty (1987); Geldoff's Live Aid concert to aid A f r i c a ' s famine victims, which was broadcast to over a b i l l i o n viewers (1985); and i n 1989, the end of the B e r l i n Wall. 182 In both education and society generally, l i t e r a c y was stressed as an e s s e n t i a l p r i o r i t y . Applebee, Langer and M u l l i s (1987) proposed that contemporary society i s structured around the l i t e r a c y of i t s c i t i z e n s (p. 6). And Kearns (in Applebee et. a l . 1987) suggested: " l i t e r a c y - r e a l l i t e r a c y - i s the e s s e n t i a l raw material of the information age . . . by 1990, three out of four jobs w i l l require some education or technical t r a i n i n g a f t e r high school" (p. 3). Hanssen, Harste and Short (1990) explained the new challenge for education at a l l lev e l s to surpass i t s former standards: although more middle, high school and college students can answer simple questions about what they have read . . . these conclusions represent old values i n which the transmission of information was the goal. (p. 259) In Canadian u n i v e r s i t i e s , t o t a l undergraduate f u l l - time enrolment had increased to 354,503 i n 1981-2. This was an increase of more than 100% over the 1962-3 enrolment of 132,700 (Hubert, 1989, p. 342). At the unive r s i t y l e v e l , along with the increasing s o c i e t a l concern about l i t e r a c y , there was concern about the "death of the humanities": "the humanities . . . have been engaged i n a kind of preemptive surrender to a set of challenges that grow ever stronger and more apt to encroach p r e c i s e l y because of the weakness of the defenders" (Finn, Ravitch and Roberts, 1985, p. 6). The communicative function of language had been seriously questioned by both 183 d e c o n s t r u c t i o n i s m a n d t h e a b o l i s h m e n t o f t h e c a n o n b y i n c l u s i o n o f " s o m e t h i n g f o r e v e r y o n e " . G r a f f (1985) d e s c r i b e s t h e c h a l l e n g e w i t h i n E n g l i s h d e p a r t m e n t s , d e a l i n g w i t h i n c r e a s i n g p l u r a l i s m i n l i t e r a r y t h e o r y : I f i n s t i t u t i o n a l h i s t o r y c o n t i n u e s t o r u n t o f o r m , we c a n e x p e c t l i t e r a r y t h e o r y t o b e d e f u s e d n o t b y b e i n g r e p r e s s e d b u t b y b e i n g a c c e p t e d a n d r e l e g a t e d t o t h e m a r g i n w h e r e i t w i l l c e a s e t o b e a b o t h e r . T h i s i n d e e d h a s a l r e a d y h a p p e n e d . . . T o a v o i d . . . c o n f l i c t , t h e u n i v e r s i t y m e r e l y adds a n o t h e r u n i t t o a n a g g r e g a t e w h i c h r e m a i n s o t h e r w i s e u n c h a n g e d , ( p . 67) T h e s i m i l a r movement i n c o l l e g e a n t h o l o g i e s a n d e v e n c o l l e g e c u r r i c u l u m i t s e l f h a s b e e n n o t e d i n t h e d i s c u s s i o n o f t h e s e v e n t i e s . H o w e v e r , t h e s e c h a n g e s d i d n o t seem t o l e a d t o w a r d empowerment o f t h e s t u d e n t o r t h e p r o f e s s o r . H a n s s e n , H a r s t e a n d S h o r t (1990) o b s e r v e t h a t : w h a t we c u r r e n t l y s e e b e i n g t a u g h t i n c l a s s r o o m s - r e g a r d l e s s o f g r a d e l e v e l - i s a s t a n d a r d b o d y o f t e x t s , p r i m a r i l y n a r r a t i v e , p r e s e l e c t e d f o r u s e b y s o m e o n e o t h e r t h a n t h e t e a c h e r o r s t u d e n t s . . . a t t h e s e c o n d a r y a n d c o l l e g e l e v e l s , p u b l i s h i n g h o u s e s a n d e d i t o r s o f a n t h o l o g i e s d o t h e s e l e c t i n g , ( p p . 2 5 9 - 6 0 ) A s c o n c e r n s t e a c h i n g t e c h n i q u e s , G o o d l a d (1984) comments t h a t , c o n t r a r y t o s e e m i n g l y d r a m a t i c c h a n g e s i n p e d a g o g i c a l p r a c t i c e , t h e s e c o n d a r y a n d c o l l e g e t e a c h e r s t i l l m e r e l y e x p l i c a t e s t h e m e a n i n g o f t h e t e x t a n d h i g h l i g h t s m a j o r l i t e r a r y e l e m e n t s . H a n s s e n , H a r s t e a n d S h o r t (1990) a g r e e a b o u t t h e n e e d f o r i m p r o v e m e n t e v i d e n c e d i n t h e p e r s i s t e n t b e l i e f a t t h e c o l l e g e l e v e l t h a t " t e c h n i q u e s o f 184 l i t e r a r y e x p l i c a t i o n . . . are pa i n f u l but necessary steps to gaining the correct meaning from a text" (p. 260). Hubert (1989) points out that although there has been much change i n English programs from those twenty years ago, "the thrust of Anglo-Canadian u n i v e r s i t i e s i s s t i l l strongly l i t e r a r y , and many attitudes deriving from the pre-1960 curriculum s t i l l remain" (pp. 343-4). However, he also notes that Canadian College English programs, as evidenced by the increase i n r h e t o r i c courses, seem to be i n the process of a s h i f t i n emphasis from poetics to rh e t o r i c , predicting that "programs i n speech w i l l undoubtedly follow" (p. 352). Hunt (1990) sees the current trends as having t h e i r foundations i n the new p r i o r i t y placed on the s o c i a l aspects of i n t e r p r e t a t i o n : the current consensus i s c l e a r l y that because readers act as p a r t i c i p a n t s i n s o c i a l circumstances influencing t h e i r goals, expectations, and strategies, any s p e c i f i c instance of reading - and thus, reading i n general - cannot be understood except as part of an entire s o c i a l s i t u a t i o n . . . reading i s as much a function of the s o c i a l s i t u a t i o n of classrooms as of either the structure of the text or the psychological makeup of i n d i v i d u a l students, (p. 98) He concludes that "the s o c i a l l y communicative function of language becomes more and more a matter of primary concern and not something to be factored out or dealt with l a t e r , a f t e r the 'simpler' problems are solved" (p. 98). 185 A. Research (1980-89): Context predominates During t h i s decade, the number of studies increased from 50 during the seventies to 64 during the eightie s . As i n the seventies, these studies were marked by the preponderance of short s t o r i e s and poems to represent l i t e r a t u r e , as well as an orien t a t i o n which emphasized aspects of the response over those of the text or the reader (See Appendix 3, Table 8) . 1. Research conceptions of l i t e r a t u r e As i n the seventies, short s t o r i e s and poems are the most popular research genres. Short s t o r i e s are the most popular genre, being used i n 28 (43%) of the research studies. Poems are used i n 22 (34%) of the studies. One of the most popular authors i n research of the eighties i s Hemingway. Hemingway st o r i e s used by researchers include: "Cat i n the r a i n " ( M i a l l , 1988); " H i l l s l i k e white elephants" (Flynn, 1986); "The K i l l e r s " (Jacobsen, 1982); "Old man and the Bridge" (Hunt and Vipond, 1985); "Indian Camp" (Hunt and Vipond, 1985); and "Mr. and Mrs. E l l i o t " (Clayton, 1980). Dorothy Parker's story, "But the one on the r i g h t " i s used i n the studies of Zaharias (1986) and Zaharias and Mertz (1983). Two other Parker s t o r i e s , "A summing up" and "The patron and the crocus" are used i n M i a l l (1988). F i n a l l y , V i r g i n i a Woolf's "Kew Gardens" i s chosen by Flynn (1986) and Jacobsen (1982). 186 Examples of poems used include Coleridge's "Frost at midnight" ( M i a l l , 1985); e.e.cummings' " i n Just" (Zaharias, 1986); and Dickinson's "I l i k e to see i t lap the miles" (De Beaugrande, 1987). Robert Frost's poems are used i n several experiments: h i s "Out, out" i n Zaharias (1986); and "Once by the P a c i f i c " i n Petrosky (1982). Other examples of poems used are: Shakespeare's "Sonnet 138", selected by Petrosky (1982); Swinburne's "A ballad of dreamland" used by Kintgen (1986); and Dylan Thomas' "Fern H i l l " , chosen by M i a l l (1986). Reasons for selection of p a r t i c u l a r works are si m i l a r to those c i t e d i n the seventies. Sadoski, Goetz and Kangiser (1988) choose t h e i r s t o r i e s because of t h e i r i n c l u s i o n i n l i t e r a t u r e anthologies, s i m i l a r p l o t structure and the fact that they were those types of s t o r i e s "often read for entertainment" as well as being "commonly used i n education" (p. 325). Zaharias and Mertz (1983) choose t h e i r s t o r i e s because of d i v e r s i t y i n structure, form, content and length. In h i s study, De Beaugrande (1987) c i t e s three reasons for s e l e c t i n g poetry: 1) " i t i s e s s e n t i a l that students can survey the ent i r e t y of the text"; 2) "the shortness of the poem i s balanced against a greater density or concentration of possible meanings" and 3) "many the o r i s t s , at least since the Formalists, have judged poetry to be the central instance of l i t e r a t u r e " (p. 147). M i a l l (1985) selects Coleridge's "Frost at midnight" not only because i t i s accessible by readers with l i t t l e or no previous experience of poetry of 187 the period, but mainly because i t contains a f a i r l y clear set of contrasting elements and thus w i l l lend i t s e l f to the repertory g r i d technique, which he uses to measure his readers' responses. Zaharias (1986) selects e.e.cummings' " i n Just" on the basis of i t s complexity, appeal and appropriateness to college readers; Svensson (1987) chooses poems which are short, of approximately the same length, written by well-established Swedish authors, i n a s t y l e comprehensible to children and containing at least one motif which i s symbolized. In addition to the predominance of the short story and the poem, there seems to be a growing i n t e r e s t i n novels (Salvatori, 1983; Radway, 1984; Crowhurst and Kooy, 1986; N e l l , 1988b) F i n a l l y , a few studies use researcher-devised s t o r i e s (Jose and Brewer, 1982, Meutsch, 1987), short expositions (Lytle, 1982) or expository prose (Maclean (1986) as " l i t e r a t u r e " . Experiments with adult readers of the eighties include neither f i l m nor dramatic text. Thus, i n research of the eighties, as i n the seventies, the l i t e r a t u r e used i s generally easy to read, i t s content i s of i n t e r e s t to the reader, and i t lends i t s e l f to the experimental conditions. 2. Research conceptions of response Research conceptions of response during t h i s decade, even more than the seventies, seem dominated by Rosenblatt's 188 idea of "response" as an event. Response-oriented studies, which centre on explorations of stance and process, constitute 35 (55%) of the studies. Reader-oriented studies, which focus on c r o s s - c u l t u r a l e f f e c t s , e f f e c t s of attitudes, personality, gender and developmental aspects, constitute 21 (33%) of the studies. Text-oriented studies, which focused on text variables such as structure, interestingness, influence of the narrator's voice on response constitute 8 (13%) of the studies. Often, as i n the seventies, response and reader- orientations as well as response as influenced by text variables seem equally important i n several studies. However, in the categorizing of these studies, the attempt was made to determine the primary focus. If the text was manipulated, the study was c l a s s i f i e d as text-oriented. If the response s t y l e was determined by personality, i t was categorized as a reader-oriented study unless the focus was on the process of the developing response. Generally, the t i t l e and purpose were given the most weight i n categorizing the studies unless the general orientation of the report emphasized a d i f f e r e n t aspect. In research of the eighties, the highly subjective and negotiated foundation of response to l i t e r a t u r e i s acknow1edged: A l l meaning, even the 'most l i t e r a l ' , presupposes s p e c i f i c and s o c i a l l y d i s t r i b u t e d , shared knowledge and strategies . . . (Svensson, 1987, p. 477) 189 Kintgen (1985) r e f l e c t s : I t i s never clear whether a p a r t i c u l a r statement r e f l e c t s knowledge of the work or conception of the r h e t o r i c a l s i t u a t i o n . . . a poem may re f e r to anything past, present or future, r e a l or imaginary, and most good poems ex i s t i n a mode that makes these terms seem inadequate, (p. 135) This thinking i s also suggested i n e x p l i c i t hypotheses to be tested. Hoffstadter (1987) proposes that " p o e t i c i t y i s a product of poetic text processing rather than a property of texts". Sadoski, Goetz, and Kangiser (1988) "investigate the convergence and divergence of several aspects of reader response to selected short s t o r i e s read i n a classroom s i t u a t i o n " (p. 320). Meutsch (1987) asks, "do encoding procedures d i f f e r for l i t e r a r y vs. non-literary understanding?". a. Response-orientations Response orientations, as i n the seventies, continue to centre on process, components and stance. Often within p a r t i c u l a r response-oriented studies, even though one of these aspects seemed predominant, each of these was included. In addition, studies of the teacher's response, which were explored by several researchers during the seventies, are represented by only one i n the eighties, that of H i l l o c k s (1989) . An example of a study which focuses on the process of the developing response i s that of De Beaugrande (1985). In 190 hi s study, "Poetry and the ordinary reader: a study of immediate responses", he gives h i s students an "unannounced t e s t " during f i n a l class interviews. He asks them to read a poem aloud, and then explain i t , f i r s t from memory and then with the text i n front of them. A second example of a study which focuses on the process of developing response i s that of L y t l e (1982). In her di s s e r t a t i o n , "Exploring comprehension s t y l e : a study of twelfth-grade readers' transactions with text", she seeks to describe " i n d i v i d u a l differences of in-process reading comprehension s t y l e , p a r t i c u l a r l y responses to comprehension d i f f i c u l t i e s encountered while reading". In De Beaugrande's (1987) "The naive reader: anarchy or s e l f - r e l i a n c e ? " , he explores the process of response strategies of naive college readers. In t h i s study, De Beaugrande also comments on the nature of t h e i r responses. He applauds the ingenuity of the readers' obvious (in the t r a d i t i o n a l sense) misreadings of Dickinson's poem, "I l i k e to see i t lap the miles". More than half of the respondents i n t h i s study, undergraduates who "report having l i t t l e contact with l i t e r a r y works i n t h e i r p r i o r schooling and even less outside the school" (p. 14 7) saw the poem as being about a horse (p. 163) rather than a steam engine. In a dramatic contrast to Richards' (1929) impatience with misreadings, De Beaugrande defends them: To say that these naive respondents "got i t wrong" much of the time would be to miss the point. Instead of being stumped because they were not f a m i l i a r with the steam- engine t r a i n , they devised other solutions which accounted for an impressive amount of the metaphors, similes and images, (p. 168) The H i l l o c k s and Ludlow (1984) study i s an example of a study which focuses on the components of response. In "A taxonomy of s k i l l s i n reading and interpreting f i c t i o n " these researchers propose a hierarchy of " s k i l l s i n the i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of f i c t i o n " which can be "discriminated from each other and organized taxonomically through l o g i c a l a n a lysis" (p. 7). An example of a study which explores stance i n a t h e o r e t i c a l way i s that of Vipond and Hunt (1984) who propose that readers can adopt one or a combination of several reading stances: point-driven, information-driven or story- driven. Their 1985 work, "Crash-testing a transactional model of l i t e r a r y learning" involves the use of several d i f f e r e n t i n t e r p r e t a t i o n a l contexts of response for t h e i r subjects. In three d i f f e r e n t experiments reported i n the a r t i c l e s , they emphasize the reader, the text or the s i t u a t i o n of the reading transaction. For example, i n the reader-oriented experiment, which compares the responses of professors and college students, they ask for think-aloud responses a f t e r every page, as well as answers to open-ended questions and the completion of both probe and h i g h l i g h t i n g tasks. They propose that novices tend to read from a story-driven stance whereas expert readers (professors) tended to respond i n a 192 point-driven way. In another study exploring stance, Wade-Maltais (1981) explores the difference between the stance of public and private response. She asks "whether responses of four groups of community college students to a short story would converge towards the text, regardless of the i n s t r u c t i o n a l approach; whether the students' public responses would converge towards i n s t r u c t i o n while t h e i r private responses converged towards the text when no audience expectations were provided". Thus, as i n the seventies, i t i s increasingly d i f f i c u l t to categorize studies into one or the other category. The boundaries between response- and reader- orientations are becoming increasingly blurred and a study such as that of Svensson (1985), which explores developmental differences i n readers' responses, also includes stance as important aspect of response. He asks his readers such questions as "What do you think the poem i s about? Why? Could i t also be about "a" (non-symbolic or symbolic int e r p r e t a t i o n , whichever alternative stance the subject did not i n i t i a l l y take)? b. Reader-orientations Reader-orientations include a focus on developmental aspects of l i t e r a r y response, response preference s t y l e s , the influence of personality, culture, gender and attitudes and b e l i e f s on response. The studies i n which l i t e r a t u r e i s 193 perceived as changing the personality, attitudes, or b e l i e f s of the reader have dropped out i n t h i s decade. Generally, those studies which explore the responses of d i f f e r e n t age groups or educational l e v e l s to response, were c l a s s i f i e d as developmental. An exception was the work of Crowhurst and Kooy (1986), "The use of response journals i n teaching of the novel". This study, though describing the responses of two d i f f e r e n t age groups, seemed more centred on the process of developing response through journal writing. An example of a reader-oriented study which focuses on developmental aspects of response i s that of Uffman (1981), "Responses of young children and adults to books with a lesson". In t h i s study, the responses of adults to children's "books with a lesson" such as Carie Carol's (1979) A rabbit for Easter and Mark Bown's (1979) Arthur's eyes were compared to the responses of f i r s t - g r a d e r s , who list e n e d to the story. A second example i s the Svensson (1987) study, i n which he predicts that "the number of inte r p r e t i v e responses, including symbolic interpretations, increases with age" (p. 471). A t h i r d example i s Amigone's (1983) d i s s e r t a t i o n , "Apprehending a l i t e r a r y work of a r t : a comparative study of interventions into a poem by experienced and inexperienced readers". The question she asks i s , "what do experienced and inexperienced readers do to a work of art i n the process of reassembling or co n s t i t u t i n g i t . . . are experienced readers 194 w i l l i n g to a l t e r t h e i r responses to a poetic work of art when presented with new and unfamiliar perceptions of that work?" An example of a study which focuses on response preference s t y l e i s that of Coss's (1983) d i s s e r t a t i o n , "The responses of selected groups to s o c i a l , objective and a f f e c t i v e theories of l i t e r a t u r e " . In h i s study, he asked his subjects to respond to a poem i t s e l f , to statements about the poem and f i n a l l y to statements about theories of l i t e r a t u r e . An example of a study which focuses on the influence of personality on response i s Kintgen and Holland's (1984) "Carlos reads a poem". In t h i s study, a f t e r Carlos gave a think-aloud response to a poem, he was given an I-test, which explores questions such as ,"If you could be any animal you wanted, what animal would you choose to be?" and "What a c t i v i t y do you l i k e most?". The researchers point out that "any given reading of an I-test . . . l i k e the reading of a poem . . . involves the personality of the int e r p r e t e r " (p. 480). The conclusion of Holland, based on the I-test, which he interpreted "not knowing Carlos' treatment of the poem" (p. 482) i s that "one would expect from Carlos a c a r e f u l l y observant and a r t f u l l y phrased account of the poem, but above a l l a reading that i s active, vigorous, c o n t r o l l i n g and dominating" (p. 482). Although the researchers go on to discuss also the r e l a t i o n between communal and private aspects of response, they point out that the i n d i v i d u a l 195 " i d e n t i t y themes", involving the reader's attitudes and b e l i e f s , can be traced i n his response. A study which explores the e f f e c t of culture on response i s that of Noda's (1981) d i s s e r t a t i o n , "Literature and culture: Japanese and American reader responses to modern Japanese short s t o r i e s " . This study attempts "to understand the nature and extent of the impact of culture upon the reading transaction" (Noda, 1980). This i s a case study of two college readers of d i f f e r e n t cultures, the American reader reading a t r a n s l a t i o n of the Japanese s t o r i e s , and both readers responding to the s t o r i e s i n extensive interviews. An example of a study which explores the e f f e c t s of reader attitudes and b e l i e f s i s that of Banks (1987). He explores the changing attitude toward the novel, Uncle Tom's Cabin, as suggested by newspaper a r t i c l e s and reviews of the novel during the three years a f t e r i t s publication. c. Text-orientations Text-orientations of response during the eighties no longer focus on quality, as they did during the f i r s t half of the century, but on the influence of text structure, genre, and a t t r i b u t e s such as text "interestingness", the use of evaluative words, values i n l i t e r a r y texts, and the e f f e c t of the narrator's voice on response. 196 An example of a study which focuses on text structure i s that of M i a l l (1985). His study, "The structure of response: a repertory g r i d study of a poem", despite i t s t i t l e , proposes that "certain elements of the poem are relat e d i n a way which i s i n t e r n a l l y coherent, and that t h i s coherence would be r e f l e c t e d i n readers* responses regardless of i n d i v i d u a l differences" (p. 257). Hunt and Vipond (1985) focus on text elements i n one of t h e i r experiments. Subjects read two versions of a short story, one i n which evaluative words such as "crowded" and "tramped" were replaced by non-evaluative words such as "came" and "walked". Fowler and McKormick's (1986) "The expectant reader in theory and prac t i c e " i s an example of a study which explores genre expectations. These researchers propose that readers have d i f f e r e n t genre-dependent expectations about genres such as f a i r y t a l e s , fables, parables and short s t o r i e s . Jose's (1984) "Story interestingness: goal importance or goal attainment d i f f i c u l t y " has students of varying grade l e v e l s rate four versions of four d i f f e r e n t s t o r i e s for goal importance and d i f f i c u l t y as related to interestingness. I t could also be argued that t h i s investigation i s reader-based. However, the emphasis stressed i s on judgment of interestingness as i t exists i n the story. F i n a l l y , during the eighties, there i s a new emphasis on writing as a means to developing and enhancing response 197 and a new in t e r e s t i n studies which explore pleasure reading. Although 16 (25%) of the studies i t h i s decade use free writing as modes of response, several centre t h e i r attention on the writing process i t s e l f . These studies (Crowhurst and Kooy, 1986; Var d e l l , 1983; Sal v a t o r i , 1983; Van DeWeghe, 1982), which regard writing as a way of enhancing response, take the constructionist viewpoint to i t s ultimate perspective. The Crowhurst and Kooy (1986) study proposes that i t i s the "spontaneous responses to the work" which form the basis of the " i n i t i a l response that they (the students) must be helped to b u i l d into a sounder, f u l l e r understanding" (p. 256). d. Studies of lud i c reading and explorations of psychic space The l a s t group of studies are unique i n the research and may be suggesting a completely new research orientation which does not p r i o r i t i z e a r t i c u l a t i o n and reading as work, but instead p r i o r i t i z e s the i n a r t i c u l a t e response which characterizes l e i s u r e or "play" reading. Two of these explore pleasure reading outside of school (Radway, 1984; N e l l , 1988). The t h i r d , although asking for a response, elaborates the connection between " l i t e r a r y space" and "play space" (Jacobsen, 1982). The N e l l (1988b) study reported i n the Beach and Hynds bibliography i s an a r t i c l e i n Reading Research Quarterly, which summarizes very b r i e f l y the extensive six-year work 198 co n s i s t i n g of f i v e separate studies, which are reported i n his (1988a) Lost i n a book. N e l l coins the term 11 l u d i c reading" to describe spontaneous pleasure reading. His f i v e studies consider: 1) the r e l a t i o n between reading a b i l i t y and reading habits; 2) reader speed and v a r i a b i l i t y during natural reading; 3) reader rankings of books for preference, merit and d i f f i c u l t y ; 4) the physiology of l u d i c reading; and 5) the "sovereignty", or personal s i g n i f i c a n c e of the ludic reading experience. His major assumption throughout, i s that there i s more to reading than the "hard work" of a r t i c u l a t e d response required i n classrooms. He proposes, through his studies, that l u d i c reading i s extremely important and worthwhile and should not be dismissed with the pejorative "escapism". The Radway (1984) study seems to go even further i n exploring, not merely pleasure reading i t s e l f , but the reading of what i s generally recognized as books of i n f e r i o r l i t e r a r y q u a l i t y . Her study, reported i n Reading the Romance, explores the reading habits and s a t i s f a c t i o n s of h i s t o r i c a l romance readers. This i s a serious, empathetic study written by a feminist who takes seriously the goals of these avid readers. She proposes that the intense r e l i a n c e on these books suggests strongly that they "help to f u l f i l l deeply f e l t psychological needs" (p. 59) . . . to "give the reader a strategy for making her present s i t u a t i o n more comfortable without substantive reordering of i t s structure" (p. 215). 199 Jacobsen (1982)'s study explores the question of whether readers' actual accounts of reading l i t e r a t u r e would "describe a realm of experience that was neither inner psychic r e a l i t y nor external r e a l i t y but at the interplay between there being nothing but me and there being objects and phenomena outside omnipotent control" (p. 25). She asks her readers highly unusual questions: Would you please describe your experience while reading passage 1 or 2. Refer to bodily, mental and emotional aspects of the experience. Where do you f e e l you are during the reading? In contrast to your usual sense of yourself? Draw a picture or diagram of yourself reading the passage, (p. 30) These new reader-oriented studies present thoughtful challenges to the predominantly problem-solving academic and research reading s i t u a t i o n . Other researchers, too, question fundamental research assumptions: . . . v i r t u a l l y nowhere except i n reading research laboratories (and sometimes, i n classrooms) do people a c t u a l l y read with purposes as general, depersonalized and i n e f f e c t i v e as "learn the information i n t h i s text" or "remember the structure of the poetry". (Vipond and Hunt, 1987, p. 132) In addition, M i a l l (1986) underlines the unnaturalness of the t r a d i t i o n a l teaching of l i t e r a t u r e . He points out i n e q u i t i e s i n power: "where a student i s reading, the teacher i s rereading" (p. 188). He concludes, "neither texts nor the teachers are sacrosanct" (p. 194). These open challenges of the i n t r i n s i c e t h i c a l and moral importance of response to l i t e r a t u r e , continue the inte r e s t i n reading preferences 200 (Foster, 1936) and acceptance of laughter, rather than d i s t r e s s when confronted with textual misreadings (Pickford, 1935a and b). IV. Summary Research conceptions of l i t e r a t u r e during the seventies and eighties are represented primarily by short s t o r i e s and short poems. As concerns research conceptions of response, the non-pedagogical, bibliotherapy studies as well as the comprehension studies, both of which appeared i n the f o r t i e s and lasted u n t i l the s i x t i e s , are no longer included. Innovations concerning l i t e r a t u r e during the seventies, compared with the s i x t i e s , include the use of f i l m (Weber, 1973) as well as the concurrent use of several l i t e r a r y genres i n a single experiment (Cornaby, 1974). During the eighties, innovations i n the research concept of l i t e r a t u r e included published children's s t o r i e s (Uffman, 1981) and d i f f e r e n t (though c e r t a i n l y not better or worse) versions of poetry (Hoffstaedter, 1987), neither of which were included during research of the seventies. A c c e s s i b i l i t y and reader consideration are mentioned more often than textual q u a l i t y as c r i t e r i a i n the sel e c t i o n of l i t e r a t u r e . Accompanying t h i s emphasis on reader consideration i s a general omission of any acknowledgment of the tal e n t of the author. There i s l i t t l e mention of the poet as an a r t i s t with s p e c i a l i n s i g h t . This reference was c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of many of the studies of the twenties, t h i r t i e s , and f o r t i e s , i n the works of both psychologists as well as those from a l i t e r a r y background. Conceptions of response during the seventies and eighties are decidedly response-oriented. Of the f i f t y studies of the seventies, the response-oriented studies constitute 30 (60%) of the t o t a l . They focus on the process of the response, the nature of the components of response and the e f f e c t s of teacher c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s or d i f f e r e n t teaching techniques on student response. Reader-oriented studies constitute 14 (28%) of the t o t a l . They explore reading preferences and the e f f e c t s of developmental differences, attitudes and gender on response. Text-orientations during the seventies constitute 5 (10%) of the t o t a l . They focus on text variables such as genre, rhythm, and narrative techniques on response. During the eighties, the change i s s l i g h t . Response- oriented studies constitute 35 (55%) of the t o t a l . They centre on explorations of stance and process. Reader- oriented studies constitute 21 (33%) of the t o t a l . They focus on c r o s s - c u l t u r a l e f f e c t s , e f f e c t s of attitudes, personality, gender and developmental aspects. Text-oriented studies, which focused on text variables such as structure, interestingness, influence of the narrator's voice on response constituted 8 (13%) of the t o t a l . 202 The primary difference i n research concerns between the seventies and the eighties i s that i n the research of the seventies, the influence of the turbulent s i x t i e s seems r e f l e c t e d i n some of the research i n t e r e s t s . There are several studies exploring the response of the teacher (Mertz, 1972; H i e l , 1974; Major, 1975; McCurdy, 1975; Peters and Blues, 1975; and McGreal, 1976). In addition, there i s a unique research inte r e s t i n issues concerning race (Menchise, 1972), violence (Auerbach, 1974) and death (Vine, 1970). These concerns are not evident i n the research of the other decades. A f i n a l c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of research shared by these decades i s the emphasis on free written response. Response tasks which include free written responses number no fewer than 14 (28%) during the seventies and 16 (25%) during the eig h t i e s . V. Conclusion During these decades, research conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e have moved away from the focus on the reader i n the s i x t i e s . In the seventies and eighties, there i s a decided emphasis on response. Most of these studies examine the process and the components of the response, often as affected by varying stances or contextual elements of the response. There i s also consideration of the student reader as creator and writer. This increasing empowerment of the 203 reader i n research r e c a l l s Bleich's conjecture nearly twenty years ago (1969): Where we invest ego into our meanings and thus c a l l them "true", the author invests ego into his meaning and c a l l s i t " a r t " . I t i s not inconceivable that c r i t i c a l pleasure and creative pleasure are, afte r a l l , the same and that the truth and/or beauty associated with these two experiences are created by i d e n t i c a l psychological mechanisms, (p. 40) The general confidence i n the inherent a b i l i t i e s of the college reader has been accompanied by the presence of two highly unusual studies, the Radway (1984) and the N e l l (1988). Although only two i n number, they are highly s i g n i f i c a n t studies i n that they v a l o r i z e pleasure reading in a way which has not been done ever before i n research. Thus the research period explored ends with the suggestion of a reversal of power positions between the reader and the author. The reader or the student during these decades i s the writer. F i n a l l y , the research ends with a serio u s l y considered research proposal to respect not only the work, but also the play or ludic aspects of reading. CHAPTER SEVEN SUMMARY I. Overview I I . Summary of Chapters One through Six II I . Conceptual summary A. Research conceptions compared with conventional conceptions B. Research conceptions compared with changing s o c i e t a l conditions . . . . . C. Research conceptions compared with changing image of the college student D. Research conceptions compared with changes i n the college teaching of English . I. Overview This chapter begins with a summary of the ideas presented i n each of the chapters thus f a r . This general summary i s followed by conclusions concerning the re l a t i o n s h i p between research conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e and the following: 1) foundation conceptions; 2) changing s o c i e t a l conditions; 3) changing college English classrooms; and 4) changing images of the college student. This chapter precedes the conclusion and a look toward the future. 204 204 208 213 216 218 I I . Summary of Chapters One through Six This d i s s e r t a t i o n has explored conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e i n research exploring the responses of adult and college readers. In order to better understand the research conceptions, they were compared with foundation 205 conceptions, as developed through t h e o r e t i c a l discussions of dic t i o n a r y meanings of the terms " l i t e r a t u r e " and "response". The research conceptions were presented i n l i g h t of changing s o c i e t a l conditions and pedagogical values. The f i r s t chapter provided an introduction and overview of the d i s s e r t a t i o n . I t summarized the significance of the d i s s e r t a t i o n i n terms of general s i g n i f i c a n c e of response to l i t e r a t u r e , s i g n i f i c a n c e of research on adult readers' response to l i t e r a t u r e , and s i g n i f i c a n c e of an examination of assumptions of t h i s research. This was followed by the t h e o r e t i c a l framework of the d i s s e r t a t i o n , including a discussion of the nature of perception, the conceptual method of c l a r i f y i n g the concept "response to l i t e r a t u r e " , and the pedagogical value of examining conceptions. The problem formulation section indicated the large scope of dictionary meanings of both " l i t e r a t u r e " and "response", and the p o s s i b i l i t y of h i s t o r i c a l change i n dominant conceptions i n the areas of research. The statement of the problem was that the suggestion of a general s h i f t i n emphasis from the text towards the reader i n research on response to l i t e r a t u r e has not been f u l l y documented. Its underlying assumption, that there are h i s t o r i c a l l y predominant research conceptions, as well as possible reasons for these s h i f t s , has also not been detailed. This statement of the problem was followed by s p e c i f i c questions to be 206 answered, p r o c e d u r e , methodology, and o v e r v i e w o f t h e d i s s e r t a t i o n . I n C h a p t e r Two, t h e d i s c u s s i o n o f t h e c o n c e p t " l i t e r a t u r e " began w i t h a summary o f i t s etymology, f o l l o w e d by a d e s c r i p t i o n o f d i c t i o n a r y meanings. L i t e r a t u r e was c o n s i d e r e d as p h y s i c a l and t h e n as a e s t h e t i c a r t i f a c t . I n b o t h i n s t a n c e s , t h e im p o r t a n c e and g e n e r a l c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s were r e v i e w e d . The d i s c u s s i o n c l o s e d w i t h t h e o b s e r v a t i o n t h a t l i t e r a t u r e c o u l d n o t be d e s i g n a t e d a e s t h e t i c by i n t r i n s i c c r i t e r i a a l o n e . I n f a c t , l i t e r a t u r e , c o n s i d e r e d as a e s t h e t i c a r t i f a c t , c o u l d be e i t h e r a w r i t e r ' s s p e c i a l use of language o r a p a r t i c u l a r s t a n c e adopted by a r e a d e r . C h a p t e r Three c o n s t i t u t e d t h e second p e r s p e c t i v e from w h i c h r e s e a r c h c o n c e p t i o n s o f "response t o l i t e r a t u r e " were examined. I t c e n t r e d on t h e p e r c e p t i o n o f l i t e r a t u r e , l e s s as an a r t i f a c t and more as i t i s u n d e r s t o o d i n t h e mind o f t h e r e a d e r , as f a r as i t i s p o s s i b l e t o s e p a r a t e t h e s e two d i m e n s i o n s . L i k e t h e e x p l o r a t i o n o f f o u n d a t i o n c o n c e p t i o n s o f l i t e r a t u r e , t h e d i s c u s s i o n o f c o n c e p t i o n s o f r e s p o n s e t o l i t e r a t u r e began w i t h t h e f o u n d a t i o n o f d i c t i o n a r y meanings of " r e s p o n s e " , f i r s t h i s t o r i c a l and t h e n contemporary. T h i s was f o l l o w e d by a summary o f t h e im p o r t a n c e o f r e s p o n s e t o l i t e r a t u r e i n our s o c i e t y . The predominant forms o f r e s p o n s e , e i t h e r a r t i c u l a t e o r i n a r t i c u l a t e , were d i s c u s s e d as w e l l as t h e d i f f e r e n c e s and s i m i l a r i t i e s between r e s p o n s e s t o n o n h o n o r i f i c and a e s t h e t i c l i t e r a t u r e . The d i s c u s s i o n n e x t turned to the central issue i n the exploration of a r t i c u l a t e d response. This epistemic issue involved three orientations or tendencies on the arbitrarily-chosen text-reader continuum. These were: text-oriented, reader-oriented and response- oriented. Examples from l i t e r a r y theory i l l u s t r a t e d aspects of these d i f f e r e n t focuses as concerns the author, the text and the response. General differences as well as underlying s i m i l a r i t i e s were delineated. Although there were many shared areas of agreement, the d i f f e r e n t orientations were derived by emphasizing the areas of disagreement. The central emphasis of the next three chapters centred on conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e as they were r e a l i z e d i n the research. These were presented i n the context of both the foundation meanings delineated i n Chapters Two and Three as well as i n l i g h t of p r e v a i l i n g pedagogical and s o c i e t a l conditions. Research conceptions appeared to separate into three major periods. The f i r s t period (1900-49), described i n Chapter Four, was a time of growth, culminating i n a peak i n the d i v e r s i t y of conceptions of both l i t e r a t u r e and response to l i t e r a t u r e . The second period (1950-69) was detailed i n Chapter Five, which describe the t r a n s i t i o n phase of research conceptions. In the research of the f i f t i e s , a strong focus seemed to be lacking and research conceptions emphasized both text-, as well as reader-oriented studies. The s i x t i e s were decidedly reader-oriented, r e f l e c t i n g the s e l f - i n t e r e s t of 208 the decade. The t h i r d and f i n a l period (1970-89) was discussed i n Chapter Six. During these l a t t e r decades, the predominant studies are those which focus on factors of the response i t s e l f : i t s components, i t s process, as well as the ways i n which i t i s affected by the adoption of d i f f e r e n t stances and d i f f e r e n t teaching modes. Reader-oriented studies seemed to follow i n popularity and those studies which focused on text variables seemed to rank t h i r d i n importance. I I I . Conceptual summary: Chapters Two through Six What follows i s a synchronic rather than diachronic summary of the ideas presented i n the foundation chapters of the d i s s e r t a t i o n . A. Research conceptions compared with foundation conceptions 1. L i t e r a t u r e Although the general research emphasis corresponds with the dictionary emphasis on " l i t e r a t u r e " as r e f e r r i n g to printed matter, exceptions do occur i n v i r t u a l l y a l l periods of the research examined. General dictionary meanings of " l i t e r a t u r e " have i n common the emphasis on printed matter. Although usually conforming to t h i s meaning, research conceptions included o r a l s t o r i e s , drama, f i l m , researcher-devised s t o r i e s , single words and meaningless sounds. In addition, researchers tended to focus on f i c t i o n , rather than non-fiction. 209 Research conceptions of " l i t e r a t u r e " began with the bare sound and pure rhythm of l i t e r a t u r e i t s e l f (1910-19). The research focus then turned to fragments of l i t e r a r y texts, single words and stanzas of poetry (1920-39). During the f o r t i e s the focus d i v e r s i f i e d to include novels, o r a l language, newspaper and magazine a r t i c l e s and researcher- devised prose. During the t r a n s i t i o n period of the f i f t i e s and s i x t i e s , the trend was a s l i g h t narrowing of focus toward narrative rather than formal elements. Novels, t h e a t r i c a l performances and short s t o r i e s began to be included. Occasionally, these were selected by the reader. During the seventies and eighties, short s t o r i e s and poems predominate. However, researcher-devised texts, children's s t o r i e s , films and plays are also included on the periphery. Throughout the research, the p a r t i c u l a r conceptions of " l i t e r a t u r e " seemed to r e f l e c t the research d i s c i p l i n e of the researcher himself. In the early days, the research was conducted by psychologists, who explored reaction to sounds and rhythm, as well as l i t e r a r y and pedagogical researchers, who focused on the i d e n t i f i c a t i o n of o r i g i n a l stanzas. During the f o r t i e s , i t was the inte r e s t of s o c i a l h i s t o r i a n s , anthropologists and p s y c h i a t r i s t s interested i n bibliotherapy, who introduced newspaper a r t i c l e s , o r a l language of d i f f e r e n t cultures, and novels and f a i r y t a l e s respectively, as l i t e r a t u r e . During the f i f t i e s and s i x t i e s , psychologists and p s y c h i a t r i s t s as well as l i t e r a r y and 210 pedagogical researchers explored response to l i t e r a t u r e . In the seventies and eighties, the research seems dominated by l i t e r a r y and pedagogical researchers, who sometimes r e f l e c t e d concerns of cognitive psychology as concerns text structure. The work of s o c i a l h i storians, anthropologists and p s y c h i a t r i s t s i s v i r t u a l l y excluded i n these l a t t e r decades. I t i s possible that dictionary meanings of l i t e r a t u r e provided a s t a r t i n g point for some researchers. However, since very few researchers o f f e r e x p l i c i t d e f i n i t i o n s of terms, i t seems more l i k e l y that researchers created, rather than found t h e i r conceptions of " l i t e r a t u r e " and "response to l i t e r a t u r e " . Thus, t h e o r e t i c a l and dictionary discussion provided foundation for purpose of t h i s discussion only, rather than a framework within which research conceptions could be contained. 2. Response Foundation meanings of "response to l i t e r a t u r e " were derived f i r s t from the dictionary meaning of response, which s p e c i f i e d p h y s i o l o g i c a l , emotional, i n t e l l e c t u a l , r e c r e a t i o n a l and e c c l e s i a s t i c a l connotations of the word. This was too vague a foundation from which to approach research conceptions. Thus, since research i s concerned with a response which i s a r t i c u l a t e d i n some way, foundation conceptions were derived from t h e o r e t i c a l discussions of how r e a l readers respond to l i t e r a t u r e . The continuum a r b i t r a r i l y selected was the text-reader continuum, with response i n the middle. Examples were derived from the writings, as well as the interpretations of the writings of the text-oriented New C r i t i c s , the reader-oriented c r i t i c s such as the psychoanalysts and subjective c r i t i c s , and the transactional or response-based c r i t i c s . Differences as well as s i m i l a r i t i e s among these three tendencies were explored. In turning to the research, however, although these tendencies could be perceived i n the general focus of each study, there were often underlying perspectives which e x p l i c i t l y acknowledged the importance of opposing or complementary orientations. In addition, some researchers explored p h y s i o l o g i c a l and i n a r t i c u l a t e response to l i t e r a t u r e through the use of semantic d i f f e r e n t i a l and interviews exploring reading preferences, as well as changes i n reader behavior and attitude. Thus, as with the foundation conceptions of l i t e r a t u r e , i t seemed that researchers also created, rather than found t h e i r conceptions of response. The general trend i n the research conception of response has been a movement from a text-orientation through the reader-based conceptions to the present focus on the response-orientations. The e a r l i e s t research conception of response to l i t e r a t u r e was rooted i n images evoked by single words and meaningless sounds. I t then became focused on judging the textual qu a l i t y of poems. This stage seems to have reached i t s height i n the late t h i r t i e s and early 212 f o r t i e s . Another group of studies, the reader-oriented survey and bibliotherapy studies, became popular from the f o r t i e s through the s i x t i e s . During the seventies and eighties, most research conceptions of response explore implications of the transactional or response-orientations. These include aspects such as the mode of response, the influence of the teacher, various genres, and student's personality on the response. S i g n i f i c a n t l y , the importance of issues such as the stance and context of response seems to underline a new awareness that the way the reader responds depends more on what he i s asked to do, than what he can do. Throughout a l l the periods of the research, there have been strong subordinate conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e . These serve to define more sharply the dominant conceptions by t h e i r presence. Since the s i x t i e s , there has been a subordinate conception of response as text-oriented, thus reversing the trend i n the f i r s t t h i r t y years of research, during which the subordinate trend was a reader- orient a t i o n . Thus, the general impression of research conceptions, as revealed by a comparison with dictionary and t h e o r e t i c a l conceptions underlines two ideas. The f i r s t may be obvious but i s worthy of mention. I t suggests that, because researchers exceed the bounds of general dictionary conceptions, the researcher has generally made his own meanings of response and l i t e r a t u r e , rather than r e l i e d on 213 dictionary or t h e o r e t i c a l meanings. The second i s that, because there are dominant conceptions i n most decades of research, the researchers may be r e l y i n g on communal meaning, or else independently developing remarkably s i m i l a r conceptions. B. Research conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e compared with changing s o c i e t a l conditions Comparison between these areas seems highly subjective. Nonetheless, i t i s worthy of mention. Research began early i n the century with the Roblee and Washburn study i n 1912. World War I broke out i n 1914. Both Canada and the United States were making the t r a n s i t i o n from a g r i c u l t u r a l to i n d u s t r i a l nations. There was rapid growth and much hardship. As though i s o l a t e d from the world, researchers focused on images evoked i n response to meaningless s y l l a b l e s . During the twenties and t h i r t i e s , s o c i e t a l events included an economic boom as well as severe Depression. Predominantly text-oriented research conceptions focused on issues such as l i t e r a r y appreciation, aesthetics and judging the qu a l i t y of poems. The research i t s e l f seemed l i k e a hermetically-sealed haven from the surrounding hardships. Many considered u n i v e r s i t y campuses to be Ivory Tower i n s t i t u t i o n s , i s o l a t e d from society. The f o r t i e s , beginning i n wartime, witnessed the return of the s o l d i e r s and increasing economic prosperity. For the 214 f i r s t time, there seems to be a correspondence between research conceptions and general s o c i e t a l conditions of prosperity. Research conceptions revealed a surge of questions based on the growing conviction that response to l i t e r a t u r e now included almost a l l possible forms of both text and response. Investigations ranged from physiological reactions recorded i n muscle action, to surveys about p o l i t i c a l views, to verbal impressions of single words, to judgment studies, as well as the f i r s t extended teaching study. The l i t e r a t u r e which evoked t h i s miscellany was equally variegated. I t included almost a l l types of printed matter: newspapers, magazines, o r a l l i t e r a t u r e of d i f f e r e n t cultures, poetry, novels, researcher-devised s t o r i e s , as well as sing l e words. The implication was that l i t e r a t u r e , as printed matter, had become central to the l i f e of the democracy. During the f i f t i e s , there was great economic prosperity. This was accompanied by peak b i r t h rates and an abundance of consumer goods, notably the t e l e v i s i o n . Research conceptions, continuing the i n t e r e s t i n the connection between l i t e r a t u r e and r e a l l i f e , suggested increasing pedagogical inte r e s t i n c l i n i c a l reader-oriented bibliotherapy studies. The subsequent decade recorded the longest economic boom on record. After the economic and s o c i a l hardship i n the f i r s t h a l f of the century, i t does not seem surp r i s i n g that 215 the demands of college students and other minority groups were described as n a r c i s s i s t i c . I t was the f i r s t opportunity they had ever had to be so. The bulk of studies i n the s i x t i e s seemed to correspond to t h i s s e l f - i n t e r e s t , with t h e i r decidedly reader-oriented focus. The end of the s i x t i e s coincided with the end of the longest economic boom on record. The seventies and eighties began with a sluggish economy, environmental problems, and general suspicion of science and technology. During the eighties, a f t e r a rough s t a r t , there was a general move towards s t a b i l i t y , i f not prosperity, as well as new harmony between the Soviet Union and the United States. As though completely i s o l a t e d from economic hardship, research flourished during the seventies and e i g h t i e s . Research conceptions centred upon response- orientations as a sort of fusion of the text- and reader- orientations. These two decades also give evidence of a new focus on the value of reading, writing and t a l k i n g about l i t e r a t u r e i n d i f f e r e n t modes and stances. Thus research conceptions seemed to be hermetically- sealed from s o c i e t a l conditions u n t i l the f o r t i e s , when research with propaganda stressed the general relevance of p r i n t . The conservatism of the f i f t i e s , the narcissism and excitement of the s i x t i e s also seemed generally r e f l e c t e d i n research concerns. However, during the seventies and eighties, the research seems decidedly r e s t r i c t e d to pedagogy 216 and focused on i t s own mission for preparing students to be s e l f - a c t u a l i z e d c i t i z e n s of the democracy. I t i s in t e r e s t i n g to note that both t e l e v i s i o n and the Bible, both of which have had profound e f f e c t s on Western culture, are e n t i r e l y omitted from the almost eighty years of research on response to l i t e r a t u r e . These s t r i k i n g omissions suggest two possible areas of future expansion within the research. The general conclusion a r i s i n g from a comparison of the areas of research and p r e v a i l i n g s o c i e t a l conditions, however, i s that although there i s no consistent linkage, there are periods of important correspondences. C. Research conceptions compared with the changing image of the college student Research on response to l i t e r a t u r e began i n 1912, co i n c i d e n t a l l y during the same decade as the founding of the University of B r i t i s h Columbia. Colleges were few, but they r a p i d l y expanded to accommodate the burgeoning numbers of students i n attendance. Research conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e began at a time when only four per cent of people between the ages of eighteen and twenty-four attended college. Research was also just beginning. During the f o r t i e s , Canadian enrolment rose dramatically due to the i n f l u x of returning s o l d i e r s i n 1947-8. There was a s i m i l a r peak i n d i v e r s i t y of research conceptions. During the f i f t i e s , the conservative mode of the students was r e f l e c t e d 217 i n t h e r e s e a r c h b y t h e v i r t u a l e q u i l i b r i u m b e t w e e n t e x t - o r i e n t e d p e d a g o g i c a l s t u d i e s a n d t h e r e a d e r - o r i e n t e d s t u d i e s w h i c h i n c l u d e d t h o s e o f b i b l i o t h e r a p y a n d p s y c h o t h e r a p y . T h e s i x t i e s , w i t h t h e p r e d o m i n a n t r e s e a r c h f o c u s o n t h e r e a d e r s e e m e d t o c o r r e s p o n d t o t h e p r e v a i l i n g mood o f c a m p u s a n d s o c i e t a l t u r b u l e n c e a n d p r o t e s t . S o c i e t a l e v e n t s a n d campus p r o t e s t s c o i n c i d e d w i t h t h e r e s e a r c h i n t e r e s t i n t h e r e a d e r : h i s p e r s o n a l i t y , p r e f e r e n c e s , a t t i t u d e s a n d b e h a v i o r , a s r e v e a l e d t h r o u g h o r a s c h a n g e d b y l i t e r a t u r e . R e s e a r c h o f t h e s e v e n t i e s i s d e c i d e d l y p e d a g o g i c a l a n d t h e r e i s a p r e d o m i n a n c e o f r e s p o n s e - o r i e n t e d s t u d i e s . A s t h o u g h r e f l e c t i n g t h e r e v o l t s o f t h e s i x t i e s , i n t h e s e v e n t i e s t h e r e i s some r e s e a r c h w h i c h e x a m i n e s m o r e c l o s e l y t h e t e a c h e r ' s r e s p o n s e . A s w e l l , t h e r e i s o n e s t u d y w h i c h e x a m i n e s t h e e f f e c t s o f t h e r e a d i n g o f v i o l e n t l i t e r a t u r e , a n d a s t u d y e x p l o r i n g poems a b o u t d e a t h . D u r i n g t h e e i g h t i e s , t h e r e a p p e a r s t o b e i n c r e a s i n g d i v e r s i t y , a l t h o u g h a l m o s t a l l r e s p o n s e t o l i t e r a t u r e s t u d i e s a r e p e d a g o g i c a l , e x c e p t f o r t h e t w o w h i c h f o c u s o n l u d i c r e a d i n g . T h u s , e s p e c i a l l y s i n c e t h e f o r t i e s , when t h e v e t e r a n s f l o c k e d t o t h e c a m p u s e s , t h e r e seems t o b e a p a t t e r n o f c o r r e s p o n d e n c e s b e t w e e n t h e c h a n g i n g i m a g e o f t h e c o l l e g e s t u d e n t , who i s h i m s e l f t h e s u b j e c t o f m o s t o f t h i s r e s e a r c h , a n d r e s e a r c h c o n c e p t i o n s o f r e s p o n s e t o l i t e r a t u r e . 218 D. Research conceptions compared with the changes i n the college teaching of English During the beginning years of the century, the predominant l i t e r a r y approaches i n college classrooms focused on detachment and analysis, with a p h i l o l o g i c a l and h i s t o r i c a l emphasis. Early research conceptions of "response to l i t e r a t u r e " had l i t t l e r e l a t i o n with the college classroom. During the t h i r t i e s , research conceptions suggested a predominantly text-oriented approach to l i t e r a t u r e , a n t i c i p a t i n g the r i s e of New C r i t i c i s m i n college classrooms of the f o r t i e s and f i f t i e s . By the f o r t i e s , when New C r i t i c i s m was just gaining i n ascendancy i n the college classroom, research conceptions had begun to favour reader- orientations, as evidenced through surveys of reading i n t e r e s t s , reports of studies exploring e f f e c t s of reading i n d a i l y and p o l i t i c a l l i f e , on the reader's behaviour, attitude, i n t e r e s t s , and even mental health. During the f i f t i e s and s i x t i e s , there seemed to be diminishing r e l a t i o n s h i p between research conceptions and college teaching. F i r s t , during the f i f t i e s there was a balance between text-and reader-orientations. In the s i x t i e s , the research became decidedly reader-oriented. The college English classroom, on the other hand, generally emphasized New C r i t i c i s m . F i n a l l y during the seventies and eighties, there seems to be convergence between the college English 219 classroom and r e s e a r c h i n the e x p l o r a t i o n of the u n d e r l y i n g r e l a t i o n between w r i t i n g and response t o l i t e r a t u r e . 220 CHAPTER EIGHT CONCLUSIONS AND FUTURE DIRECTIONS: THE LARGER CIRCLE I. Introduction 220 II . Overview 221 I I I . Mechanistic metaphor: Conceptual change as succession A. Description: research conceptions 221 B. Pedagogical implications 223 C. Strengths and l i m i t a t i o n s 224 IV. C u l t u r a l - p o l i t i c a l metaphor: Conceptual change as ideology A. Description: research conceptions 225 B. Pedagogical implications 227 C. Strengths and l i m i t a t i o n s 227 V. Organic metaphor: Conceptual change as l i v i n g e n t i t y A. Description: research conceptions 228 B. Pedagogical implications 230 C. Strengths and li m i t a t i o n s . . 2 3 0 VI. Holonomic metaphor: speculation on the future A. Description: research conceptions 23 6 B. Pedagogical implications 24 0 C. Strengths and l i m i t a t i o n s 244 VIII. Summary 245 IX. Reflections 245 I. Introduction Morgan (1989) proposes that "metaphor i s central to the way we organize and understand our world" (p. 339). Further, he continues, "metaphors are not only inte r p r e t i v e constructs or ways of seeing; they also provide frameworks for action." (p. 343). In attempting to make sense of the changing research conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e as they have been presented i n t h i s d i s s e r t a t i o n , t h i s chapter w i l l explore t h i s change through various metaphors and of f e r predictions concerning future d i r e c t i o n s . I I . Overview The four metaphors or interpretations to be explored i n t h i s chapter are as follows: l) mechanistic; 2) c u l t u r a l - p o l i t i c a l ; 3) organic; and f i n a l l y , from the area of t h e o r e t i c a l physics, 4) holonomic. A b r i e f description of the metaphor w i l l be followed by i t s application to the research conceptions. Its pedagogical implications w i l l be proposed, and then strengths and l i m i t a t i o n s evaluated. I I I . Mechanistic metaphor: Conceptual change as succession A. Description: research conceptions The mechanistic metaphor i s derived from Cartesian philosophy. In simple terms, i t suggests l o g i c a l cause and e f f e c t . In the mechanistic metaphor, r a t i o n a l i t y predominates over i n t u i t i o n , analysis over synthesis: "the b e l i e f i n the cer t a i n t y of s c i e n t i f i c knowledge l i e s at the very basis of Cartesian philosophy" (Capra, 1988, p. 57). The mechanistic metaphor, Morgan (1989) points out, works best "under conditions where machines work well": where there i s a straightforward task and a stable environment. The mechanistic metaphor uses conceptual data-reduction to present issues i n absolute terms so that progress toward the predetermined goals can proceed expeditiously. Issues are perceived as either good or bad, r i g h t or wrong, with intermediate gradations eliminated. The mechanistic 222 perspective suggests a context-free evaluation which i s both quick and absolute. The application of the mechanistic metaphor to changing research conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e reveals a succession of unrelated stages. These are determined by distinguishing the differences rather than s i m i l a r i t i e s i n the predominant conceptions of each period. Kuhn (1970) implies a mechanistic metaphor i n h i s description of s c i e n t i f i c paradigm s h i f t s : j u st because i t i s a t r a n s i t i o n between incommensurables, the t r a n s i t i o n between competing paradigms cannot be made a step at a time, forced by l o g i c and neutral experience. Like the g e s t a l t switch, i t must occur a l l at once (though not necessarily i n an instant) or not at a l l . (p. 150) Using the mechanistic metaphor to interpret conceptual s h i f t s i n research presents the view which has been suggested throughout the d i s s e r t a t i o n : research began with the predominance of text-orientations of response to l i t e r a t u r e (1912-39), followed by reader-orientations (1940-69), and f i n a l l y response-based orientations (1970-89). Straw and Bogdan's (1990) proposal of paradigm s h i f t s within the areas of reading and l i t e r a r y theory are a recent rel a t e d example of a mechanistic viewpoint. In seeking to i d e n t i f y the "conventional wisdom . . . and . . . primary assumptions i n any p a r t i c u l a r era" (p. 15), they describe the conceptual changes i n reading and l i t e r a r y theory as progressing from: 1) a predominantly transmission model, (predominant u n t i l the 1880s) i n which text was perceived as synonymous with the author's meaning; to 2) a t r a n s l a t i o n model ( u n t i l the 1960s), i n which readers had to translate "the meaning of the text through t h e i r own s k i l l . . . as readers or interpreters" (p. 16); to 3) i n t e r a c t i v e theories or models ( u n t i l the present time) i n which: "reading became . . . a problem-solving (rather than puzzle-solving) a c t i v i t y i n which author and reader shared both world knowledge and l i n g u i s t i c knowledge v i a the text" (p. 16); to 4) co n s t r u c t i o n i s t models, "only just now being created" i n which "the reader becomes the author i n the sense that the meaning of any text i s seen as a t o t a l creation of the reader within the p a r t i c u l a r s o c i a l milieu of the text, the reader and the act of reading" (p. 17). These descriptions of predominant orientations as separate, monolithic and unvariegated stages convey the c l a r i t y offered through mechanistic s i m p l i f i c a t i o n . B. Pedagogical implications Applying the mechanistic metaphor to the college English classroom places a p r i o r i t y on: 1) r i t u a l and adherence to pre-set goals and objectives; 2) r a t i o n a l , e f f i c i e n t organization; 3) preservation of a standard ideal "response"; and 4) detailed s p e c i f i c a t i o n of each assignment. As concerns the type of l i t e r a t u r e taught, the mechanistic view, i n i t s s t r i c t separation of categories, i s c a r e f u l to 224 separate l i t e r a t u r e as aesthetic a r t i f a c t from l i t e r a t u r e as r e f e r r i n g to a l l printed matter. A mechanistic, black and white approach perceives of l i t e r a t u r e as either good or bad. In the classroom, there i s an emphasis on good l i t e r a t u r e . S i m i l a r l y , teaching focus i s on planning, organizing and above a l l , c o n t r o l l i n g . This metaphor suggests an autocracy i n which not only the i d i o s y n c r a t i c nature of the p e r s o n a l i t i e s involved, but also the existence of contextual constraints, are factored out. Graff (1989) argues that contemporary pedagogical practices i n the college English classroom suggest a mechanistic model: "one s t i l l encounters the widespread b e l i e f that teaching students to read l i t e r a t u r e i s primarily a matter of inculcating a technical s k i l l " (p. 251). Further, t h i s model i s also suggested i n contemporary evaluation instruments of "response to l i t e r a t u r e " , e s p e c i a l l y standardized tests (Brody, DeMilo and Purves, 1989). Answers are either r i g h t or wrong. C. Strengths and l i m i t a t i o n s of the mechanistic metaphor The primary strengths of the mechanistic metaphor are i t s delineation of straightforward paths toward goals and i t s f a c i l i t a t i o n of evaluation. Limitations a r i s e from i t s conversion of r i t u a l to ideology. Conceptual change takes the form of unpredictable revolution. In the areas of pedagogy and research, the mechanistic metaphor seems to have been discarded. Others would argue that i t i s inescapable. I t i s the conceptual prison within which twentieth-century thinking i s encased. IV. C u l t u r a l - p o l i t i c a l metaphor: conceptual change as ideology A. Description: research conceptions The c u l t u r a l - p o l i t i c a l metaphor suggests that conceptions can be viewed as a culture of ideologies. Therefore, within the context of t h i s d i s s e r t a t i o n , the research conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e can be examined as a smaller culture of ideologies within the larger context of s o c i a l and pedagogical conditions. Purves (1988) points out that "any culture serves to i s o l a t e i t s members from other cultures and any culture i s e l i t i s t i n some senses" (p. 2). Since cultures seem i n t r i n s i c a l l y s e l f - interested, the c u l t u r a l and p o l i t i c a l metaphors w i l l be considered as v i r t u a l l y synonymous. A major strength of the c u l t u r a l - p o l i t i c a l metaphor i s i t s disclosure of research conceptions as shared systems of meaning. The application of the c u l t u r a l - p o l i t i c a l metaphor to changing research conceptions suggests that during the twenties and t h i r t i e s , the text-orientation gained power. This was perhaps because of i t s correspondence with an e l i t e view of response to l i t e r a t u r e suitable for the sp e c i a l few of the growing i n d u s t r i a l nation who were p r i v i l e g e d enough to attend college. Furthermore, the tex t - o r i e n t a t i o n also supported the predominant mechanistic view of an objective r e a l i t y , v i r t u a l l y indispensable i n the t r a n s i t i o n from a g r i c u l t u r a l to i n d u s t r i a l nation: "a book i s a machine to think with" (Richards, 1924, p. 1) i s what i s remembered of Richards' longer quote 1. During the f o r t i e s as well, research conceptions appeared to correspond to general s o c i e t a l conditions of a long-awaited economic prosperity, and growing self-confidence with a peak in d i v e r s i t y of conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e . During the f i f t i e s and s i x t i e s , the longest economic boom on record resulted i n the promotion of "self-indulgent narcissism" (Rosenblatt, 1978) i n the predominance of reader-oriented conceptions during the research of the s i x t i e s . The conservatism i n both society and some college classrooms of the seventies i s contradicted by the enthusiasm i n research for response-orientations as well as, perhaps, the renewed in t e r e s t i n r h e t o r i c . The reader, i n research, i s often perceived as creator and writer of his own responses. As well, discussion groups and the influence of the teacher's response are now considered important factors i n the shaping of the individual's response to l i t e r a t u r e . The only i d e o l o g i c a l correspondence i n the seventies and eighties between research conceptions and the areas of He continues: " t h i s book might better be compared to a loom on which i t i s proposed to re-weave some ra v e l l e d parts of our c i v i l i z a t i o n " (Richards, 1924, p. 1). 227 college English teaching i s perhaps the renewed i n t e r e s t i n r h e t o r i c and society's increased emphasis on l i t e r a c y s k i l l s . Thus research conceptions viewed through a c u l t u r a l - p o l i t i c a l metaphor can suggest a succession of ideologies which sometimes but not always have overt correspondences with s o c i e t a l conditions i n which they are nested. B. Pedagogical implications The c u l t u r a l - p o l i t i c a l metaphor underlines the power of the college English classroom as a preparation for both future career and better c i t i z e n s h i p . The student i s indoctrinated into thinking which stresses deference to the authority of the text and obedience to the power of the teacher. However, the defensive stance of a dominating ideology suggests the threat of attack from other value-laden ideologies or conceptions. The pervasive c u l t u r a l and pedagogical obsessions with l i t e r a c y , a r t i c u l a t e d response and l i t e r a t u r e as p r i n t are examples of c u l t u r a l values turned into ideology. C. Strengths and l i m i t a t i o n s of the c u l t u r a l - p o l i t i c a l metaphor The major strength of the c u l t u r a l - p o l i t i c a l metaphor i s i t s challenge of c u l t u r a l r a t i o n a l i t y as myth. Straw explains that: at any time that a p a r t i c u l a r l e v e l of l i t e r a c y has been defined as being functional and, as a society these 228 l e v e l s have been approached, l i t e r a c y has then been redefined so that approximately 20% of the population f a l l s into the category of "f u n c t i o n a l l y i l l i t e r a t e " (Straw, i n press a, p. 3) Thus, the concept of functional i l l i t e r a c y "has both challenged our schooling practices and succeeded i n keeping them under constant attack" (Straw, i n press a, p. 5). A r e a l i z a t i o n of the Sysiphean punishment which i s both assigned to and often accepted by the educational system suggests that regardless of what educators do, the constant of c r i t i c i s m p r e v a i l s . IV. Organic metaphor: Conceptual change as l i v i n g organism A. Description: research conceptions The organic metaphor suggests that research conceptions can be viewed as an organic en t i t y . This metaphor i m p l i c i t l y p r i o r i t i z e s growth and v i s i b l e expansion. I t implies that a number of i n t e r - r e l a t e d ideas should be examined together. In other words, i t proposes a h o l i s t i c view within the boundaries of the organism. Research conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e , as they change through the twentieth century, can be viewed as an evolution, from an emphasis on the external r e a l i t y of the text through that of the subjective r e a l i t y of the reader towards an assimilation or balance between both these aspects. Kuhn (1970) suggests an organic metaphor i n another int e r p r e t a t i o n of paradigm s h i f t s , which acknowledges the evolutionary, rather than revolutionary aspects. He suggests that " a l l c r i s e s begin with the b l u r r i n g of a paradigm and thus the consequent loosening of the rules for normal research" (p. 84): by p r o l i f e r a t i n g versions of the paradigm, c r i s i s loosens the rules of normal puzzle-solving i n ways that ultimately permit a new paradigm to emerge (p. 80) . . . during the t r a n s i t i o n period, there w i l l be a large but never complete overlap between the problems that can be solved by the old and by the new paradigm (p. 85) Thus, i n research, before each orien t a t i o n was succeeded by the ensuing orientation, i t seemed to p r o l i f e r a t e and thus "loosen the rules of normal puzzle- solving" which allowed the new orientation to emerge. Both text and reader-orientations seemed to peak during the stage before they were replaced by the next dominant orientation. As well, the organic metaphor also suggests a second view of the movement of c o n f l i c t i n g orientations or ideologies which fluctuate i n and out of existence, (in) a continual dance of recreation and a n n i h i l a t i o n of (what appears to be) mass changing to energy and energy changing to mass. Transient forms sparkle i n and out of existence creating a never-ending, forever-newly-created r e a l i t y . (Zukav, 1979, p. 179) For example, certa i n elements seem to appear only for an instant: the humorous aspect of "misreadings" i n the Pickford (1935) study. Other elements, such as the response- oriented elements of the Pickford (1935) study are given l i f e i n the Vergara (1946) study and are picked up and expanded full-blown i n the research of the seventies. During the 230 eighties, these ideas seem to be on the wane and a new strand seems to be growing at a faster rate. Those are the studies which focus on free writing, which began as early as the Shrodes (1949) d i s s e r t a t i o n . S i m i l a r l y other elements or transient forms, such as the text-oriented judgment of qu a l i t y studies, s t a r t i n g with the Abbott and Trabue (1921), seem v i r t u a l l y extinguished i n the research of the seventies. B. Pedagogical implications The pedagogical implications of the organic metaphor strongly suggest that students are neophytes who need to be guided and nurtured i n t h e i r development. Straw (in press a), more recently r e f e r s to t h i s as a model of an in t e r a c t i v e and cooperative s i t u a t i o n . He explains that, although respect i s granted the student, the goals, methods, procedures and content of what i s learned come from the teacher, who acts as the guide. The i m p l i c i t assumption i s that the teacher, s o l e l y i n the r o l e of teacher, has reached an ultimate stage of independence and v i r t u a l s e l f - a c t u a l i z a t i o n . A l l three orientations of response to l i t e r a t u r e appear to stress the importance of a hierarchy of response and the central value of a guide or model of response. C. Strengths and li m i t a t i o n s of the organic metaphor The strength of the organic metaphor i s i t s emphasis on v i s i b l e growth and the r a t i o n a l evolution of the 231 surrounding culture. Implicit i n t h i s metaphor of l i v i n g growth however, i s the fear of death or impending decay. So f r a n t i c , i n fact, i s the recent emphasis on l i t e r a c y v i r t u a l l y as a means to l i f e i t s e l f , that the recent report (Globe and Mail. July 4, 1990) of a formerly i l l i t e r a t e prisoner, who was taught i n prison to read and write and i s now harassing a judge with threatening l e t t e r s , seems e n t i r e l y humorous. F i n a l l y , emphasis on the organic metaphor encourages ideology: measurable v i s i b l e growth i s good. The suggestion that the response-centered orientation of response to l i t e r a t u r e , or more properly our conventional understanding of i t , needs re-examination and r e v i s i o n i s suggested i n Straw and Bogdan's (1990) proposal that the previous "communication model", which has not been seriously questioned " p r i o r to the past twenty years" has recently been replaced by an a c t u a l i z a t i o n model, i n which: . . . what drives each of these (possible) readings i s a need i n the reader to f u l f i l or actualize h i s or her own purposes, (p. 4) Straw (1990) predicts a movement towards holism and coll a b o r a t i o n between formerly disparate areas: . . . the integration of notions of reading and writing that w i l l lead, I think, to a single conceptualization of a l i t e r a c y process, a single overarching explanation of both reading and writing, (p. 79) In a s i m i l a r proposal for the need of collaboration between formerly d i s t i n c t areas, Hunt (1990) predicts: "reading comprehension research w i l l need to tap the 232 expertise of l i t e r a r y t h e o r i s t s " (p. 104). Johnson (1984) perceives the long-standing p o l a r i t y i n u n i v e r s i t y English departments between cultures which emphasize " l i t e r a t u r e " or " r h e t o r i c " can and should be resolved by focusing on important t h e o r e t i c a l s i m i l a r i t i e s rather than differences: while those of us teaching l i t e r a t u r e have f a i l e d to recognize . . . the work as a composition, those of us teaching language and writing have s i m i l a r l y f a i l e d to recognize that teachers of l i t e r a t u r e . . . are focusing on exactly the issues that are basic i n composition teaching . . . (p. 24) In 1988, she suggests the "congruence of i n t e r e s t s " between reader-response c r i t i c i s m and r h e t o r i c : the fundamental synonymity between•reader-response and r h e t o r i c a l views of the pathos p r i n c i p l e represents a s i g n i f i c a n t bridge between a body of theory largely confined to the analysis of l i t e r a r y texts and a body of theory generally r e s t r i c t e d to the dynamics of formal and s o c i a l discourse, (p. 163) The v i a b i l i t y of her suggestion i s supported i n the strand of recent research which employs free written responses to enhance and shape the understanding of text. These proposals toward general holism between the areas of reading research, l i t e r a r y theory and r h e t o r i c are suggested i n the research of the eighties by the appearance of new research conceptions which emphasize the importance of writing (Crowhurst and Kooy, 1986; V a r d e l l , 1983; Fowler and McCormick, 1986; Sal v a t o r i , 1983; and Van DeWeghe, 1982) as well as those which v a l o r i z e l u d i c reading (Nell, 1988b; and 233 Radway, 1984), and the single unique study which explores psychic l i t e r a r y space (Jacobsen, 1982). It i s proposed that these suggestions of a new model or a new inter p r e t a t i o n of the transactional or response- ori e n t a t i o n might expand i t s tenets to emphasize as well: 1) i n a r t i c u l a t e , as well as lud i c and task-oriented reading; 2) a focus on " l i t e r a t u r e " as encompassing o r a l events as well as written: and 3) a view of the teacher's r o l e to include also one of "a voice among voices" (Straw, i n press a) rather than only the one of an obvious guide. Since Lakoff and Johnson (1980) propose that c u l t u r a l change may be brought about by replacement of f a m i l i a r metaphorical concepts with new ones, i t appears that a new metaphor of response to l i t e r a t u r e would be useful. Following the example of Dewey and Bentley (1949), Bleich (1978) and Rosenblatt (1978), the following metaphor, derived from the area of t h e o r e t i c a l physics, i s offered for speculation. It extends the h o l i s t i c view one step further by p o s i t i n g a d i f f e r e n t point of emphasis beyond the v i s i b l e world. VI. Holonomic metaphor: speculation on the future In the area of t h e o r e t i c a l physics, the two most current theories are the S-matrix and the holonomic or holographic paradigm (Capra, 1988). It i s the holonomic theory, which has been proposed i n f i e l d s as diverse as neurological research (Pribram, 1982), quantum mechanics 234 (Rutherford, 1989) and theology (Schindler, 1984) which seems to o f f e r both explanation and suggestions for directions of expansion i n research conceptions of response to l i t e r a t u r e . Although t h i s theory has only recently come to the fore, i t has a long conceptual history, beginning i n 1714, when von Leibniz, the discoverer of in t e g r a l and d i f f e r e n t i a l calculus, proposed that: "a metaphysical r e a l i t y underlies and generates the material universe. Space, time, mass and motion of physics and transfer of energies are i n t e l l e c t u a l constructs" (Wilber, 1982, p. 13). In 1929, A l f r e d North Whitehead described nature as a great expanding nexus of occurrences not terminating i n sense perception. He took the organic view one step further i n the proposal that the v i s i b l e world was not the fundamental r e a l i t y . He proposed that dualisms such as mind and matter were f a l s e ; that r e a l i t y was i n c l u s i v e and interloc k i n g . During the same year, Lashley published substantial research demonstrating that s p e c i f i c memory was not to be found i n any p a r t i c u l a r s i t e i n the brain but was d i s t r i b u t e d throughout. In 1947, Dennis Gabor, l a t e r winning a Nobel prize for h i s discovery, employed Leibniz's calculus to describe a po t e n t i a l three- dimensional photography: holography. In 1965, Emmett Le i t h and J u r i s Upatnicks announced t h e i r successful construction of holograms with the newly invented laser beam. The si g n i f i c a n c e of the development of the hologram, which i s a unique o p t i c a l construction, was that i t e f f e c t i v e l y served 235 as a conceptual model to i l l u s t r a t e the a p p l i c a t i o n of t h i s idea i n other f i e l d s . In 1969, the work of Karl Pribram, who had worked with Lashley as a neurosurgeon, provided evidence for Lashley's suggestion that: memories are generally recorded a l l over the brain i n such a way that information concerning a given object or q u a l i t y i s not stored i n a p a r t i c u l a r c e l l or l o c a l i z e d part of the brain but rather that a l l the information i s enfolded over the whole. (Bohm, 1987, p. 198) This phenomenon i s analogous to the functioning of an o p t i c a l hologram. Any piece of the hologram has the a b i l i t y to reconstruct an e n t i r e view of the o r i g i n a l image. In 1971, p h y s i c i s t David Bohm, who had worked with Ei n s t e i n , proposed that the organization of the universe may be holographic. Dychtwald (1982), i n his summary of the most important implications of the holographic paradigm, suggests both i t s s i m i l a r i t i e s as well as fundamental differences from Dewey and Bentley's (1949) idea of "transaction". The holonomic paradigm or metaphor accepts the transactional tenet that "there i s a c t u a l l y no such thing as pure energy or pure matter". However, i t takes the next l o g i c a l step to emphasize, not the transaction and the f l u i d nature of ''reality", but the importance of underlying unity: every aspect of the universe contains knowledge about the whole(s) within which i t e x i s t s . In addition, since the v i b r a t i o n a l expression of each holographic unit i s also a statement of pure information, we can expect that each p a r t i c u l a r aspect has the a b i l i t y to be knowledgeable about every other p a r t i c u l a r aspect within the master hologram(s).