Only to the extent: insanity in the works of Kurt Vonnegut and redesigning developmental education

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Thomas-Anderson Joshua Lane (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:
Elizabeth Chiseri-Strater

Abstract: "Only to the Extent: Insanity in the Works of Kurt Vonnegut" details the author's public struggle with mental illness and explores a selection of his major works as coping mechanisms. The author used the realm of literature to purge his own inner fears, but did so in a way that insulated the turmoil contained on the page. Vonnegut viewed literature and media to be responsible for the propagation of a great many "cuckoo ideas," thus he made a variety of deliberate, careful structural moves with the intended effect of building community without perpetuating false or harmful expectations. Vonnegut refused to bring "order to chaos," instead attempting to show the chaos that underlies what people like to perceive as order. "Redesigning Developmental Education" details the changes that many developmental education departments--ranging from mathematics to English to reading--have been experimenting with in order to meet the growing demand for enrollment while coping with dwindling resources. The emporium, the laboratory based model that many schools have adopted and many more are considering, does not solve the problems that developmental education programs face. Such a program only serves to mitigate some of the pragmatic difficulties in educating a financially struggling population and does nothing to address the theoretical flaws that hinder student success upon entry into curriculum classes. To that end, I have devised a platform for education that is intended to address both the pragmatic issues of classroom space and funding while giving students more opportunities to write in a rhetorical situation. Students should no longer simply complete developmental courses, instead they should truly develop.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2013
Kurt Vonnegut, Mental illness, Literature, Coping mechanisms
Vonnegut, Kurt
Vonnegut, Kurt $x Mental health
College student development programs
Compensatory education

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