#becomingeducational W16: Analyse that – now this

These sessions are designed to get you wrestling with DATA: audio, written and visual data – so that you can make sense of whatever you are doing now for your first year projects – and so that you hit the ground running when you think about your final dissertations… and you start thinking about them NEXT YEAR!

Last week we analysed Kevin Hodgson’s (@Dogtrax) poem ‘Steal this poem’ as raw data – generated in response to the same sort of TMD questions on ‘CHEATING’ that you responded to. Here’s a quick reminder of the poem that Kevin wrote:

Steal This Poem

Take these words
Steal this poem
NO — go on now –
make it your own
Break it / Fix it
Rip it apart / Remix it

Defy my intent
until all meaning is spent
and then use your tools and tricks
to rebuild it

Cheat my meaning in ways
that make sense to YOU –

Tinker against type
don’t believe my hype
I’m a painter not a poet
using words as ink as I write

I refuse to shackle this work
to paper or screen
or that nebulous world in-between
in hopes that maybe later YOU’LL appear;
watching my words tumble down the spine of my lies –
made up only to be broken / spoken / a token of truth

No, you’re no cheater
you’re a seeker
a keeper of stories in this literary landscape
just like me

So, go on:
Steal this poem
Give it a home
I’m already off writing something else
and I’ve left these words all alone
waiting here for YOU

Peace (in the poem),

(If you go here: http://dogtrax.edublogs.org/2014/01/16/rhizo14-steal-this-poem/  – you can hear Kevin reading it …)

Analyse all that!

This week we asked you to get out your own poems – and to read and critically analyse either your own poem – a friend’s poem – or Kevin’s if you had not already done so:

  • Read someone else’s poem – or ‘Steal this poem’:
  • What is it saying overall?
  • What is it saying in each line?
  • What themes or motifs are emerging?
  • Find FIVE themes and write 20 words about each of them…

Elesha’s poem:

Cheating is a shameful act

Makes you look bad and in the spur of the moment

Gives a bad reputation and spies and secrets of all kinds

Holds you back from what you’re really expecting

It takes time to be honest when you need it most.

Esin’s poem:

Cheating and teaching

Conflicting each other

Do you think cheating is easy?

What you feel when you cheat?

Shameful… Deeply in your heart.

And scarlet kiss on your cheek

What about eyes?

Poor eyes!

Glooming and trying to catch something

From someone else’s work


Feel hot! And hearing some voice that whispering you:

Don’t do! Don’t do!

Cheating is unfair and not respecting…

So why are you doing this hard job?

Grab life by handling right bar…

To be honest!

It is easy! Isn’t it?



And we argued a bit like this

Esin’s poem – themes: senses and (self-) betrayal:

Senses – ears, eyes, cheek, skin, touch:

Cheating engages the senses – seeing, hearing, feeling. Senses are there to help us engage with/understand the world around us… BUT – here all the senses are burning with shame – there is no joy – just pain. Are we mis-using our senses? If not – what else is going wrong – is it education itself?

Who tells us that such and such is ‘cheating’ as opposed to learning? Who wants us to feel this shame?

If we are misusing our senses are we misunderstanding the world? Are we misunderstanding the ‘point’ of education? Or – does education itself get it wrong if it forces us to misuse our senses – to feel THIS way!

Leads on to…

Betrayal – scarlet kiss on the cheek:

Scarlet kiss on the cheek – as with the scarlet letter – the adulteress… Again we can see the individual internalises the shame and the blame of this academic offence… It is written on their bodies. We feel that shame, that blame…

Given that learning is messy – and we are told to work together – to share ideas – to form study groups… How come suddenly we are told that working together is collusion or cheating? Why should we feel this burning shame?

Again we might ask – is this the fault of the education system or of us? How can we ‘know’?

Well – in research you would look at some of your other data – and compare and contrast. So here it might be useful to compare those poems with ‘Steal this poem’ – and particularly his use of the senses:

We are told to: ‘rip it apart – remix it – make it your own’

There is no shame here – this is an exultant engagement with ideas – with learning. We are invited to glory in this vision of learning:

‘Cheat my meaning in ways that make sense to you’ …

‘No, you’re not a cheater

You’re a seeker’

The body here is not shamed and blamed – it is not broken or humiliated into submission; but is harnessed to enjoy the destructive, constructive and messy business of learning.

This could be seen as an implicit criticism of an education system that is broken; that forces us to internalise individual blame and shame for what are issues of power and control.

NEXT – you might compare the different themes that were emerging from YOUR data – and compare them to the ones that emerged from the literature that you read to put together your LITERATURE REVIEW.  You would bring the ideas from your Lit Review in when DISCUSSING your FINDINGS.

Now – if those poems were YOUR data – how would you bring those different perspectives together in your FINDINGS; DISCUSSION; CONCLUSION; RECOMMENDATIONS      ???

And finally – we got into our Performance Groups – with Perry Campbell!!

NEXT WEEK: Visual Data

NB: Success Coaches – BEL-109

Weds 12.00-14.00

Take any work with you – get some support…

2 thoughts on “#becomingeducational W16: Analyse that – now this

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