GREENVILLE, S.C.—Furman Department of Education professor Paul L. Thomas has co-edited a new collection of essays, "Critical Media Literacy and Fake News in Post-Truth America" (Brill/Sense).
The collection is co-edited by Christian Z. Goering, University of Arkansas. In a description for Brill, the editors say:
“This edited collection is not a response to the 2016 United States Presidential Election so much as it is a response to the issues highlighted through that single event and since when incredibly smart, sophisticated, and intelligent members of our society were confused by misinformation campaigns.
While media literacy and critical media literacy are ideas with long histories in formal education, including K-12 students and higher education, the need for increased attention to these issues has never reached a flash point like the present.
The essays collected here are confrontations of post-truth, fake news, mainstream media, and traditional approaches to formal schooling. But there are no simple answers or quick fixes. Critical media literacy, we argue here, may well be the only thing between a free people and their freedom.”
Before joining the Furman faculty in 2002, Thomas taught high school English in rural South Carolina. He earned undergraduate, master’s and doctoral degrees in education from the University of South Carolina.
He is a column co-editor for the English Journal, a publication of the National Council of Teachers of English, and series editor for "Critical Literacy Teaching Series: Challenging Authors and Genres" (Sense Publishers), for which he authored the first volume—"Challenging Genres: Comics and Graphic Novels" in 2010 and co-edited a volume on James Baldwin in 2014.
He has published books about Barbara Kingsolver, Kurt Vonnegut, Margaret Atwood, Ralph Ellison, James Baldwin and Haruki Murakami; and his recent books include "Trumplandia: Unmasking Post-Truth America" (Garn, 2017), "De-Testing and De-Grading Schools" (Peter Lang USA, 2016), "Pedagogies of Kindness and Respect: On the Lives and Education of Children" (Peter Lang USA, 2015) and "Beware the Roadbuilders" (Garn, 2015).
He was the 2013 recipient of the George Orwell Award presented by National Council of Teachers of English, and has written commentaries for the Washington Post, The New York Times, The Guardian, Education Week, The State, and The Greenville News.