The World Traveling Self: Play as Context and Tool of Critical Literacy


  • P. J. Nelsen


In this article, Nelsen responds to the decreased opportunities for play and playful education within contemporary schools. While justified by the need to bolster the academic performance of our most marginalized of students, anti-playful schooling may exacerbate the very "achievement gaps" that the accountability movement seeks to close. This is especially true within the highly-valued and crucially important area of literacy. The article argues that rather than being frivolous, or extraneous to "serious" academic study (and thus a candidate for censure), it constitutes both a tool for"”and the context of"”critical literacy instruction.

Author Biography

P. J. Nelsen

Peter J. Nelsen is an assistant professor at Appalachian State University in North Carolina where he teaches courses in philosophy of education. His current academic interests include the intersections of the epistemological and moral dimensions of schooling with social justice education.