Grammar and the Unity of Curriculum

W. Martin Bloomer

in The School of Rome

Published by University of California Press

Published in print April 2011 | ISBN: 9780520255760
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520948402 | DOI:
Grammar and the Unity of Curriculum

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This chapter examines the development of textual cohesion, the qualities of the story schema encouraged by the school, and the underlying analysis by a categorical thinking about persona. Studying model exercises rather than teachers' descriptions of the curriculum offers a better opportunity for detecting traces of students' use and practice, although the exercises are neither archival records nor the equivalent of the modern researcher's observations. The chapter begins with fable, because fable provides both the first time the child gets to tell a story. Fable anticipates much of the justification of the difficult work of schooling: arduous obedience and routine are seen as a deferral of reward and as a practice in self-direction. After this discussion of fable, the chapter turns to the sententia, an exercise that provides mini narratives of the movement from powerless student to powerful speaker. The world of the fable will make clear that sententia was an important element in composing a moral self, which is the schooled subjectivity that treats the self as the object and font of a moralizing discourse. With the sententia the boy will adopt for the first time an authoritative persona whose speech is a series of commands.

Keywords: textual cohesion; story schema; fable; curriculum; sentential; speech; moral self

Chapter.  14307 words. 

Subjects: Classical Literature

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