(Non)Rural Voices: Blog

Writing who we are – as connected to the places we’re from and where we are now

Photo by Flora Westbrook on Pexels.com

This space is a place for rural and (non)rural teachers (really, teachers from anywhere) to process and re-story their place-connected personal and professional identities through writing and art.

As a rural teacher, and as a rural person in general, I’ve always felt like no one really cares about my story. Or that my story didn’t matter very much. But the more I work with rural teachers and rural out-migrant teachers, the more I come to realize just how untrue that is. So, I’ve made this space for us to tell our stories and explore how we’re all connected to place(s).

I’d love to hear your story, so please reach out if you’d like to contribute!

RRYAL: Jeff Zentner’s In the Wild Light Episode 4

During this episode, I outline a possible assignment that uses embodied knowledge and a chosen passage from In the Wild Light to inform students’ writing. Students visit places in the community they love, take pictures, create Wordles, and ultimately write place-connected pieces that they then invite the community to view.

RRYAL: Jeff Zentner’s In the Wild Light Episode 3

In this episode, I detail my reaction to Zentner’s text as a rural out-migrant and hillbilly reader. I discuss how IN THE WILD LIGHT raises questions about the experiences of rural out-migrants as well as the hero narrative attributed to rural folks who choose to leave their hometowns to pursue higher education.

RRYAL: Jeff Zentner’s In the Wild Light Episode 2

For this episode, I discuss how Cash and Delaney’s out-migration helps us think about how place shapes the way we see and understand ourselves as well as how others see and understand us.


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