All teaching has something to do with transmission of hidden knowledge, secrecy, and revelation. But the teaching of secrecy itself faces particular challenges. Drawing on the authors’ experiences teaching secrecy-themed seminars to first-year university students, this paper pinpoints four such challenges: how to determine the range of phenomena to cover in a short course, how to prevent excessive interpretation of secrets, how to encourage students to take a fun topic with seriousness, and how to engage students in their own practices of secrecy. In laying out these challenges, we aim to contribute to a secrecy literacy: a needed competency so people can better evaluate efforts to keep secrets and appreciate the need for certain types of secrets while also being able to critique problematic forms. This secrecy literacy can provide a foundation for the skills needed to better manage secrecy in our professional and everyday lives.
Bratich, Jack Z. and Craig R. Scott. 2021. "Revealing Challenges of Teaching Secrecy." Secrecy and Society 2(2). https://scholarworks.sjsu.edu/secrecyandsociety/vol2/iss2/3