Burriss co-edits book on teaching about Appalachia

Cover of book

Theresa Burriss is co-editor of the book, set for release this month.

Educators seeking creative ways to teach Appalachian history and culture may benefit from "Appalachia in the Classroom: Teaching the Region." Co-edited by Theresa Burriss, director of Radford University's Appalachian Regional and Rural Studies Center, the book covers literature, films and folktales, and includes memoirs and photographs.

Burriss became involved in the project when Patricia Gantt, associate dean of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences at Utah State University, asked her to contribute a chapter on teaching the Affrilachian poets—writers of African descent living in the Appalachian region. Burriss responded with "From Harlem Home to Affrilachia: Teaching the Literary Journey." Later, Burriss volunteered to help edit the book.

"The collection is geared more toward teachers than students because it is pedagogical in nature," Burriss said. "I do think non-educators would find it of interest because the text contains a variety of material all dealing with Appalachia but from different time periods and in different genres. Plus, many of the chapter contributors offer interesting and unique ways of looking at the region."

Also contributing to the book were current and retired RU Appalachian Studies professors and instructors, including RU English Instructor Ricky Cox, retired English Professor Parks Lanier and Professor Emeritus Grace Toney Edwards, former director of the Appalachian Regional and Rural Studies Center.

According to a press release from Ohio University Press, the publisher states "In the growing national movement toward place-based education, 'Appalachia in the Classroom' offers a critical resource and model for engaging place in various disciplines and at several different levels in a thoughtful and inspiring way."

The book is due to be released this month.

Learn more about Radford University at www.radford.edu.

Jun 17, 2013
Bonnie Erickson
(540) 831-5804