Despite decades of work that sought to expand, decenter, and problematize what works are taught at institutions of higher education, the canon still looms large in many disciplines, particularly related to undergraduate curricula. Different teachers have different approaches to teaching canons, from situating them within their social and historical contexts, expanding them through simultaneously teaching more marginalized thinkers, or throwing out the canon entirely to pursue a decentered, or even decolonial, program of learning. In this workshop, we will discuss the merits of all these strategies, and their broader pedagogical implications. This workshop also acknowledges that often the material of the course is outside of the control of the instructor, and we will develop strategies for teaching canonical works rigorously and critically while still pushing students to think beyond the boundaries of the canon.
Counts toward the CETLI Teaching Certificate.