Blog

Teaching Harry Potter

by Catherine Jhee
August 25, 2011

Rebecca Herr Stephenson, Cooney Center fellow, has been in the New York office for a few days this week working with the Research team on the e-book QuickStudy out at the New York Hall of Science. We were thrilled that she brought a copy of her newly released book, Teaching Harry Potter: The Power of Imagination in Multicultural Classrooms, which she co-authored with Catherine L. Belcher.

The authors interview teachers who choose to teach Harry Potter in their classrooms and the often controversial and political decisions that they had to make in order to do so. They examine the cultural, economic, and educational power of J.K. Rowling’s pop-culture sensation, encouraging a critical discussion of the state of education and the policies that affect teachers’ freedom in the classroom.
The book was just released by Palgrave Macmillon earlier this month, and has received excellent reviews from luminaries such as Henry Jenkins, who notes that the book “produced powerful emotional responses” for him, including an even greater respect for the teachers who struggle to engage their students despite the obstacles that standardized curricula impose on their creativity as instructors.

Learn more about the book on the publisher’s website, and visit the Teaching Harry blog to learn more about the project. And watch for a more in-depth description of the project from Becky in the very near future!