I am a theorist: Learning to name my world with a new literary humanism
|Title||I am a theorist: Learning to name my world with a new literary humanism|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||2016|
|Journal||Educational Journal of Living Theories|
|Type of Article||living theory|
In this paper I ask: how can I improve what I am doing as a literary theorist working with a ‘new literary humanism’ and seeking to make explicit the educational contexts in which much reading and studying of literature takes place? As part of this developmental, self‐reflective process, this paper seeks to make explicit one of my core living values: the freedom to name myself and my world and to be transformed by this process. I show how I have moved from a less helpful way of naming my identity as a theorist, to a more positive and personal pathway. I show this by openly coming to terms with my experiences as an international adoptee straddling multiple cultures and languages, struggling to form a coherent sense of self that avoids splitting my identity into fragments. Given that my primary avenue for educational influence is as an author‐learner communicating to other author-learners (students and academics), I then interrogate two conceptions of personhood inhering in the identity of author: a deconstructionist model and an Orthodox Christian one. I argue that for me, being explicit about my ontological foundations as an author hoping to influence others by way of my core living value, strengthens the credibility of my personalism as an author. In seeking to image forth the life-enhancing ability to name myself and my world, to seek a holistic self‐identity rather than a fragmented one, I do so because I hold to the life-affirming path of humanity articulated in Orthodox conceptions of the Incarnation.