Publication Date


Document Type

Contribution to a Book

Publication Title

Legacies of Christian Languaging and Literacies in American Education


Mary M. Juzwik, Jennifer C. Stone, Kevin J. Burke, Denise Dávila



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This chapter identifies myths which hold special significance in English classrooms, and, in doing so, weave them into the otherwise conventional, well-nested, even imperial logics of English as a school subject. Barthes explains as much, arguing that myths have a social history, and are in that sense unnatural, though they operate by naturalizing. Yet English teaching and the research which undergirds it has historically sought to demystify the field, positioning its relation to myth antagonistically. The chapter focuses on myths of linguistic and grammatical instruction, which cut across the traditional domains of English teaching as well as recent curricular expansions towards media literacy, and new and multi-literacies. A consideration of the myths that shape English as a school subject, both critically and affirmatively, helps to better see and render the beauty in the daily work.


This is an Accepted Manuscript of a book chapter published by Routledge/CRC Press in Legacies of Christian Languaging and Literacies in American Education on 2019, available online:


English and Comparative Literature