Stanford English Professor Andrea Lunsford knows how important social media and the internet is for the future of writing.
While this idea might not be entirely novel, it’s coming from an interesting person. Lunsford is highly respected as an academic, and is also incredibly hip. She’s blogged about the modern linguistic uses of the word “like.” She has also taught at Standford for almost 15 years, and is in her 70s.
In 2012 she published a book called “Everyone’s An Author,” a writing guide that touches on using pictures and sound alongside words, especially for online media.
Lunsford told the Stanford Report her thoughts on where education should go with social media and writing. While traditional writing instruction often assumed students were middle-class, white, and “still writing on paper,” one of Lunsford’s goals is to challenge long-held assumptions about who can share their ideas, and how.
“Turn on your computer, write a blog post — and you’re an author,” Lunsford told the Stanford Report. “Young people today want not just their voices to be heard. They want some control and some authority — some authorship.”
To truly give young people the ability to spread their ideas through the web, Lunsford thinks its necessary to teach them the specific skills needed to write for new media. But since her students are so willing to write their hearts out online, she says it won’t be too hard to get there. Lunsford cites social media, blogs, and Kickstarter as ways her students are getting their voices heard.
“Young people today are not content to sit back and just consume — swallow — what’s been thought and written in the past 2,500 years,” Lunsford said. “They want to produce things themselves”
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