Passion and Politics

Academics Reflect on Writing for Publication

November 2008
More details
  • Publisher
    UCL IOE Press
  • Published
    20th November 2008
  • ISBN 9780854738021
  • Language English
  • Pages 232 pp.
  • Size 7.75" x 9.75"

Drawing on interviews with 18 educational and social research academic authors of renown who work within the Institute of Education, University of London, this innovative and exciting new book will be both a useful and inspiring work for both experienced and new writers within the field of academic publishing.

The authors examined the interviews with these academic writers to draw out insights into academic writing and publication and to establish key themes. These themes are likely to be of immediate relevance and connection to other writers and those who help others with their writing. The authors examine seven key themes: the journey to becoming a writer; identities; going about writing; producing a text; engaging in the process; the politics of writing for publication; and writing, thinking and learning. This book will be indispensable for both writers and teachers but is intended to appeal to those interested in academic writing theory and research, especially in relation to the emerging field of writing for publication.

“By interviewing a number of scholars across disciplines, Passion and Politics: Academics on Becoming a Published Writer reveals to students and fellow academic staff alike the very real joys and pains of writing. As the authors state, this is about ‘the lived experience of writing but it is also about the hazards and blessings encountered on the journey to becoming a voice that is
heard …to becoming published.’ Even so, the lessons in this book have broader ramifications as they speak to how research is undertaken and how even the questions they ask are shaped by the very real contexts and restrictions of the spaces in which they occur.

Students will delight in learning that scholars whose work they read undergo the same stress, anxiety and writing processes (including procrastination) that they do. Thus this book is an excellent learning tool for educators who work with students who write in any field. Aspiring and present academics will find comfort in reading how well-known scholars, like them, have had to work at their writing and yet still take pleasure in it. They, like students will gain strategies for and confidence in developing their own writing styles. Managerial staff will learn how they can set up support systems, communities of writers and a network that foster the very real conditions within which academics can productively succeed as researchers.

Demonstrating that writing is disciplinary and contextually situated, this collection encourages other higher education institutions to map their own local spaces—and provides a way for them to do so. Underscoring the creative, recursive, exploratory nature of writing, these scholars speak personally about how making sense of the world through their words impacts the world around them, and how students also can engage in reshaping their worlds through the very real work that language affords us.”

Joan Mullin, Chair, English Studies - , Illinois State University

“This original volume offers insights and learning for all academic writers, whether experienced academics or apprentice students….[It] is novel in drawing upon such experienced writers and their reflections, looking at writing from the basis of a life time’s engagement. The writers open themselves up to the personal and emotional, social and professional dimensions and not just the technical skills.”

Brian V. Street, Professor of Language in Education - , King’s College, London

Passion and Politics is an engaging enquiry into the place of writing in the careers of 18 well-known writers in education. It is a work that adds to our knowledge of the craft and processes of (academic) writing, providing insights through interview of what goes into the making of published texts. As well as discussion of approaches to writing, an interesting strand that emerges is discussion of craft instruments and technologies and of the affective, as well as intellectual, relationship of these writers to the creative practices in which they engage. This is a useful and stimulating addition to the literature on academic and professional writing.”

Dr Fiona J. Doloughan, Lecturer in English - , University of Surrey

1) Introduction; 2) The History of the Study; 3) The Participants and Their Experiences; 4) Their Journeys; 5) Going About Writing; 6) Producing a Text; 7) Engaging in the Process of Writing; 8) The Politics of Writing for Publication; 9) Writing, Thinking and Learning; 10) Learning from the Writers; Interview; Transcripts.

Eileen Carnell

Eileen Carnell is Lecturer in the School of Curriculum, Pedagogy and Assessment at the Institute of Education, University of London.

Jacqui MacDonald

Jacqui MacDonald is Head of Staff Development at the Institute of Education, University of London.

Bet McCallum

Bet McCallum

Mary Scott

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