Writing in Teaching English in the Two-Year College, John Pruitt reports on a case study of eight heterosexual students who chose LGBT novels and met to discuss them without a teacher’s intervention. Recording the sessions, Pruitt discovered concerns about “authenticity”; he posits that the need to create authenticity in depicting a culture can encourage essentialized perceptions of that culture, despite the diversity of its members. He feels that insights into what students bring to literature before an instructor’s theoretical framing helps him better understand how to teach literature about difference.

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