About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 440-447
Publication year: 2009
ISBN: 978-84-613-2953-3
ISSN: 2340-1095

Conference name: 2nd International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 16-18 November, 2009
Location: Madrid, Spain

SLAYING THE LEVIATHAN: THE PARADOX AND CHALLENGE OF TEACHING ENTRENCHED CHRISTIAN STUDENTS OF COLOR

P. Lessane Williams, T. McCoy

Roosevelt University (UNITED STATES)
The concept of a leviathan is mentioned five times in the Old Testament of the Bible and refers to a large serpent or monster immune to the attacks of man and vulnerable only to the mighty hand of God. This colossal monster appears in the books of Job, Psalms, and Isaiah and gives witness to Jehovah’s power to smite any foe confronting His chosen people. Metaphysically, a leviathan refers to the carnal or human nature of Man—his weaknesses, shortcomings, essentially any and all ungodly attributes associated with human behavior. Yet, some devout Christians only see stories regarding the leviathan as proof that God is in absolute control of their lives, world, and affairs. In other words, if God can raise the leviathan, He can handle any challenges that come my way. These believers embrace a very literal understanding of the passages and apply it to all areas of their lives, even to their education and student responsibilities.

This paper addresses the challenges of teaching African American adult students to experience, embrace, and comprehend Academic writing and think critically about required reading and contemporary issues without compromising their religious beliefs. This challenge has been greatest when working with older, African American women and men who are returning to college after years of working and raising their children. For many, their only real frame of reference for addressing real-life issues is rooted in their religious beliefs. Thus, discussions about race, gender, sexuality, and many other contemporary issues are rooted in only what The Bible says about a topic.

How do we prepare our students to focus on their interpretation and understanding of assigned texts and the research of other scholars, rather than their resting upon their Christian laurels alone? How do we demonstrate the differences between Academic writing and religious and self-help writing and their relevance to understanding critical and contemporary issues? In the face of staunch proselytizing, how do we gird our students with the tools to work and thrive in an ever-expanding global world?

To address these issues, quantitative and qualitative methods were employed. We constructed a research design employing a two-group pretest-posttest design that tested the efficacy of reflexive teaching and creative ethnographies in reducing anti-gay attitudes among students in two upper-level Liberal Studies classes at a private Chicago university. To deal with the lack of equivalence of groups, we control for age, race/ethnicity, and sex in a regression analysis. Qualitatively, the researchers draw upon their teaching experience at urban institutions throughout the country as the basis for their strategies for slaying the leviathans that impede their students from doing and being their very best.
@InProceedings{LESSANEWILLIAMS2009SLA,
author = {Lessane Williams, P. and McCoy, T.},
title = {SLAYING THE LEVIATHAN: THE PARADOX AND CHALLENGE OF TEACHING ENTRENCHED CHRISTIAN STUDENTS OF COLOR},
series = {2nd International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation},
booktitle = {ICERI2009 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-613-2953-3},
issn = {2340-1095},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Madrid, Spain},
month = {16-18 November, 2009},
year = {2009},
pages = {440-447}}
TY - CONF
AU - P. Lessane Williams AU - T. McCoy
TI - SLAYING THE LEVIATHAN: THE PARADOX AND CHALLENGE OF TEACHING ENTRENCHED CHRISTIAN STUDENTS OF COLOR
SN - 978-84-613-2953-3/2340-1095
PY - 2009
Y1 - 16-18 November, 2009
CI - Madrid, Spain
JO - 2nd International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
JA - ICERI2009 Proceedings
SP - 440
EP - 447
ER -
P. Lessane Williams, T. McCoy (2009) SLAYING THE LEVIATHAN: THE PARADOX AND CHALLENGE OF TEACHING ENTRENCHED CHRISTIAN STUDENTS OF COLOR, ICERI2009 Proceedings, pp. 440-447.
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