Reading Curriculum in the Age of Spectacle: Reclaiming Experience and Dialogue in Reading

Meredith N Sinclair


Using Fahrenheit 451 as a model for reading in the age of spectacle, this paper offers a critique of reading curriculum driven by Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts and Literacy in History/Social Studies, Science, and Technical Subjects (CCSS-ELA), which divorces reading from dialogue and lived experience.  Drawing on Debord’s (1967/1983) notion of spectacle, the author considers how our current cultural moment may be shaping and shaped by an alienated and alienating curriculum of reading.  By embracing the political implications of reading curriculum, we can reclaim reading as a dialogic activity grounded in the world.


literacy, reading

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JCT: Journal of Curriculum Theorizing is an interdisciplinary journal of curriculum studies. It offers an academic forum for scholarly discussions of curriculum. Historically aligned with the "reconceptualist" movement in curriculum theorizing and oriented toward informing and affecting classroom practice, JCT presents compelling pieces within forms that challenge disciplinary, genre, and textual boundaries.

The journal is published by the Foundation for Curriculum Theory and is associated with the Bergamo Conference on Curriculum Theory and Classroom Practice, held in the autumn of each year. JCT is indexed in The Education Index.

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