In this qualitative study of school discourse on national day commemorations, focus is on the "social creativity strategies" through which group members can improve their social identity. Discourse analysis was carried out on thirty-nine teachers' speeches delivered in Greek schools between 1998 and 2004. The speakers scorn rationality and logic, stereotypically attributed to "the West" (a "West" which is perceived not to include Greece), as cold and not human. The Greeks' successful national struggles are presented instead as the result of irrationality. They claim irrationality to be the most human and thus the most valuable quality, which places Greece first in the world hierarchy. The results are further discussed in terms of their implications for learning and teaching in the classroom, as well as for policy and research.
Teachers' Speeches, National Day Commemorations, Greek Schools, East, West, Social Identity, Social Creativity Strategies, Social Comparison
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Recommended APA Citation
Benincasa, L. (2010). In Praise of Irrationality: Self, "East" and "West" in Greek Teachers' Speeches on National Day Commemorations. The Qualitative Report, 15(5), 1145-1163. Retrieved from http://nsuworks.nova.edu/tqr/vol15/iss5/7