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Why is Telling Writing, now in its fourth edition, still going strong in hundreds of colleges and universities? Ken Macrorie touches on the answer in his preface: Good teaching in any field isn't a matter of employing gimmicks and choosing from a damnfool encyclopedia of tricks to play on students . . . but a matter of setting up a climate friendly to learning and then challenging learners to connect their experience and ideas with those of the accepted authorities or producers. Students can't become truly educated unless they grow out of and beyond themselves . . . Telling Writing gives them an indispensable base, a knowledge of themselves on which to grow.
Macrorie's approach works because it helps students break away from the deadly academic prose fostered by so many writing courses and enables them to write about and from their own experiences.
Heinemann Educational Books, 9780867091533, 320pp.
Publication Date: January 1, 1985
About the Author
Ken Macrorie has served as editor of College Composition and Communication, has taught at Michigan State, San Francisco State, and Western Michigan universities, and for thirteen summers was an instructor at the Bread Loaf School of English. A Tribute to Ken Macrorie, 1918-2009It is with profound sadness that we share with you news of Ken Macrorie's death. Ken's association with Heinemann-Boynton/Cook began more than a quarter century ago with the publication of Telling Writing, in which he asserted, Good teaching in any field isn't a matter of employing gimmicks and choosing from a damnfool encyclopedia of tricks to play on students . . . but a matter of setting up a climate friendly to learning and then challenging learners to connect their experience and ideas with those of the accepted authorities or producers. Through this and his other ground-breaking books, Uptaught, Writing to Be Read, and The I-Search Paper, Ken touched and changed the lives of countless thousands of students-and their teachers-by revealing to them their own latent abilities to write their stories, tell their truths, find their interests, research their curiosities, and finally organize what they need and want to say into memorable prose. Ken's deep respect for students and intolerance of educationally unsound quick fixes continue to inform our publishing program just as they did when his books helped first launch us as a publisher. We will be forever grateful to Ken and the significant role he played in Heinemann-Boynton/Cook's publishing history. To post your tribute to Ken or read comments from colleagues Peter Stillman, former publisher of Heinemann-Boynton/Cook, and Tom Newkirk, please visit our Teachers Forum.