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The Critical PulseThirty-Six Credos by Contemporary Critics$
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Jeffrey Williams and Heather Steffen

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780231161152

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231161152.001.0001

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The Power of Unknowing

The Power of Unknowing

(p.264) 36 The Power of Unknowing
The Critical Pulse

Judith Jack Halberstam

Columbia University Press

This chapter presents the author's account of what she calls “low theory,” of how we should look at low as well as high texts, and also how many of the lessons we learn are in spite of rather than because of the formal strictures of education. She believes in shaking down the big disciplines once a generation, replacing dinosaur forms of knowledge production with improvised programs, and reinventing curricula, disciplinary knowledge, and knowledge clusters every decade at least. She says that ignorance is as powerful a force as knowledge and that learning often takes place completely independently of teaching. She concludes by describing the film Fantastic Mr. Fox (2009), from which she has learned much about masculinity, life, risk, wildness, love, loss, and survival.

Keywords:   literary critics, criticism, low theory, education, learning, teaching

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