Cover image for Under running laughter : notes from a renegade classroom
Under running laughter : notes from a renegade classroom
Howe, Quincy, 1934-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Free Press ; Toronto : Collier Macmillan Canada ; New York : Maxwell Macmillan International, [1991]

Physical Description:
ix, 156 pages ; 25 cm
General Note:
Includes index.
Personal Subject:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
LC4093.N5 H69 1991 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

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The author, a classics professor, recounts the four years he has spent teaching disadvantaged, inner-city youths.

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Former classics professor turned high school teacher Howe gives readers his sympathetic, idealistic impressions of an enduring social disgrace: the desperate struggle and near-hopeless plight of inner-city high school students in New York City. In the Leake & Watts High School, Howe's own students face tremendous odds and extraordinary pressures in school, at home, and on the street. More a work of self-discovery and personal observation than of original conclusions and solutions, this book de~serves attention as an example of wholesale Socratic determination to "teach the unteachable" and to address the bigger problem of inner-city poverty. To be indexed. ~--Jane Jurgens

Publisher's Weekly Review

After 15 years as a classics professor, Howe, ``in dismay over the decline of humanistic education,'' took a job teaching inner-city adolescents remanded to a foster care agency in Yonkers, N. Y. Describing his experiences with his students--oppositional, undersocialized girls and boys, predominantly black--in unvarnished yet respectful tones, Howe briefly reviews the ``psychoanalytic literature on the development of the dissocial child'' that gave structure and coherence to his dealings with his charges. He examines their troubled home lives, the chaos of which may account for the intemperate behaviors that brought about their placement at the residential facility. Howe reveals conflicted feelings about his exhaustive, never boring labors and makes recommendations for improving the foster care system while remaining realistic about the youths' limited potentials. He is an unconventional teacher, and his dedication to his ``throwaway'' students is inspirational. (Nov.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

A former classics professor who left academia to work with inner-city teenagers, Howe recounts his defeats and successes as a special education teacher at a residential treatment center for abused and abandoned youth in New York City. He interweaves accounts of schoolroom incidents with reflections on the organizational changes needed to reach his angry, antagonistic, undersocialized charges. Howe is honest about his frustrations and frequent helplessness, but nevertheless maintains a constructive perspective and proposes methods to improve a seemingly hopeless situation. His commitment and insights will inspire any teacher who has faced a hostile class and those who have accepted the challenge of assisting deprived adolescents. Recommended for colleges with educational and social service programs and larger urban public libraries.-- Carol A. McAllister, Coll. of William and Mary Lib., Williamsburg, Va. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.