Teaching DH on a Shoestring: Minimalist Digital Humanities Pedagogy

This article explores minimalist digital humanities pedagogy: strategies for teaching DH at institutions that don’t have many resources for doing so. Minimalist digital humanities pedagogy aims to maximize learning while minimizing stress, barriers of access, and time (for both instructors and students). This article considers how we can take a minimalist approach to course design, […]

The Activist Roots of Student-Centered Pedagogy

In 1968, Toni Cade Bambara made a radical decision. At the time, Bambara—writer, activist, and more—was teaching a remedial writing class at the City University of New York. There, she met students who had been subjected to years of educational racism: underfunded schools, substandard conditions, outdated textbooks, and instructors more interested in disciplining students than […]

Literary Studies in Marginalized Spaces: the City College SEEK Program

In the late 1960s, at the height of the era’s social movements, four of the twentieth century’s most important authors were teaching down the hall from one another at Harlem’s City College. Like the majority of educators today, Toni Cade Bambara, June Jordan, Audre Lorde, and Adrienne Rich were not teaching wealthy or even middle-class […]

The Pedagogical Legacy of bell hooks

On December 15, the Black feminist scholar, writer, and teacher bell hooks died at her home in Kentucky. She was 69. The author of more than 30 books on subjects from teaching to love to popular culture, hooks is best remembered for developing a feminist vision that insisted on the intersections of race, class, and […]

Collaborative Close Reading Online

This blog explains how collaborative close reading can be done online. I recommend reading that post before this one. Since posting my collaborative close reading activity nearly two years ago, photographs of colorful, annotated excerpts have circulated on social media from classrooms all over the world. As professors have adapted this activity for different classroom contexts, I’ve […]

Interview: Feminism, Activism, and the Digital Humanities

Interview by Rebekah Jo Aycock I had the pleasure of interviewing Dr. Danica Savonick over the phone on May 18, 2020. I am grateful for her time and energy towards this project and especially appreciate the opportunity to elevate her important insights about the transformative power and potential risks of using digital technologies in the classroom. As the pandemic ravages […]

Concluding a Course with a Collaborative Public Project: Keywords for Literary Studies

This blog describes how I organized my Introduction to Multicultural Literature course around a collaborative, public final project. Rather than a traditional final paper, the course concludes with students co-authoring a digital glossary of Keywords for Literary Studies. What follows is a lightly edited version of my remarks for the Digital Pedagogy Roundtable at MLA […]

Podcast on Inclusive Teaching

Episode 60 of Tea for Teaching podcast hosted by John Kane and Rebecca Mushtare. “Are your class conversations dominated by a small number of voices? In this episode, Dr. Danica Savonick joins us to discuss a variety of class activities that support an inclusive learning environment and promote equity in participation while increasing student learning.” […]

“We was girls together”: Toni Morrison and the Aesthetics of Female Friendship

I first read Toni Morrison in a college literature class on “Experimental Lives.” In this course we traced the will to experiment across novels like Jack Kerouac’s On the Road, Paul Bowles’ The Sheltering Sky and Michael Ondaatje’s The English Patient. At that time, many of us college students were living away from our parents […]

Teaching Public Writing in the Graduate Seminar

In Fall 2018, I attended an event at my college organized by my colleague Cori McKenzie on “Innovations in English Language Arts Teaching and Learning.” In this event, McKenzie’s graduate students presented their research projects in progress, on topics ranging from the importance of multimodal composition to teaching diverse books in the K-12 classroom. I […]