Teaching Empathy through English Literature and Creative Writing in the Korean Classroom
- Karen Muckenhirn
- 영미문학교육 제24집 3호
- 등재여부 : KCI등재
- 173 - 203 (31 pages)
Low levels of empathy in university students has become an increasing problem worldwide, including in South Korea, triggering an empathy crisis. Various teaching methods and strategies have been employed in the Korean classroom with positive results, including teaching empathy through English literature. However, few studies have explored the combination of English literature and creative writing in English to teach and build cognitive empathy. This study presents the teaching strategies and methods of a class called Critical and Creative Textual Studies, which combines a unique fusion of analysis and interpretation of English literary texts combined with creative thinking and writing practice. Students first critically analyzed assigned texts, and then engaged in creative writing exercises designed to encourage perspective taking. They were then given a choice of which text to creatively respond to in writing. Three of these creative responses were then analyzed for evidence and extent of cognitive empathy through various analytical techniques including perspective taking, emotive language, level of immersion, type of description and detail, syntax, repetition, verb tense, figurative language, and showing vs. telling. All three showed the potential for experiencing and achieving cognitive empathy. Student survey responses supported these positive results. It is hoped that this study will open up and expand the possibilities for creative writing in the English in the Korean classroom, and generate discussion regarding strategies and methods for increasing empathy among university students.
II. Teaching Methods: Critical and Creative Textual Studies
III. Teaching METHODS: CREATIVE RESPONSE ANALYSIS