William McGinley's professional activities are an attempt to conceptualize research, teaching, and community service as connected activities across the domains of literacy, literature, and English education. His most recent work examines the changing role of humanities education in public school classrooms. This work is derived from a long tradition of theoretical work across a range of disciplines that offer diverse perspectives designed to re-imagine humanities-based approaches to classroom learning/teaching. He has examined how theories of emotion and sentimentality in democratic politics can inform literary understanding. He has also investigated how teachers-in-preparation draw upon improvisational narrative models to organize and understand their initial teaching experiences. Finally, he has conducted research on how middle school students deploy the creative power of writing and visual art to envision a sense of shared community designed to inspire action and social change.
humanities education, narrative studies, life history and memoir, literary imagination, literature instruction, english education, emotion and literature, teacher education