Transforming The power of language
Words are the raw material of culture.
Transforming | the power of language
Nasser brings his combination of practice and theory into the classroom, resulting in a unique perspective for his students. His practice as a poet, critic and a reviewer feeds directly into the student experience – in 2018, for instance, he coached a team of LBU students who participated in a nationwide performance poetry competition, and now those students are broadening their skills on their own – including putting on a very successful series of readings in Leeds, and publishing pamphlets of their own creative work – and this project will continue to grow in 2018/19.
In the classroom, Nasser says language can break down barriers. "It’s just language, it can be pushed around, and manipulated. There are almost no repercussions. At the start, students may be unsure of themselves, or lack confidence. But, once they recognise they each have something to say, you can break down barriers. Their reluctance is replaced with confidence in themselves and their work. We then can start exploring language and literature together, and ultimately see some incredible results after this amazing three-year journey with them.”
And his graduates, he believes, leave university equipped with the critical, communication and analytical skills that opens up a wide range of career opportunities. “If my students can handle James Joyce, or Gertrude Stein, or Claudia Rankine, they can handle anything. Words are the raw material of culture itself and understanding language gives you a unique skill Humanities students have so much to offer - they are creative, critical thinkers, problem solvers, and great communicators. Studying literature and creative writing provides powerful insights into human behaviour from ethical, social, and intellectual perspectives, and that’s what I try to impart to our students at Leeds Beckett.”