Permalink for this paragraph 0 Wow.
Permalink for this paragraph 0 What an enriching story! You always hear over and over again the classic story of the academic who had a passion for reading ever since he was 5, read every Charles Dickens novel by age 9 and could recite The Iliad by age 13. Rarely do you hear about someone who had an “A-Ha!” moment and suddenly became in love with literature.
Permalink for this paragraph 1 I love what story brought his “A-Ha” moment Huckleberry Finn, an American classic. I wish I had an “A-Ha” moment. I feel like I’m the standard story and have always just enjoyed reading and writing.
Permalink for this paragraph 1 I think it is so important we realize that literature is not one sided. There are continually going to be other views and ideas taken from texts. Gerald Graff puts it simply, “I gained confidence from recognizing that my classmates and I had had thoughts that, however stumbling our expression of them, were not too far from the thoughts of famous published critics” (page 38). Remember, some of the things we uncover may not be far off from what others think.
Permalink for this paragraph 2 Graff’s idea that it is imperative we learn to “talk well” about what we read and not just read well. I think this is so important. If you do not know how to discuss and question a piece of text, are you really able to understand it? Usually after discussing literature with someone I walk away with a deeper understanding about it. Usually.
Permalink for this paragraph 0 The author’s point that books do not “essentially teach themselves” as previously believed is wrong. Teachers place books into students’ hands and to some degree the book “teaches itself,” but now without the teacher express his or her own interpretation into the learning process.
Permalink for this paragraph 0 That is something important to realize. If you’re reading a book in class and the teacher says the red curtain symbolizes passion, but you wonder if the red curtains symbolize sexuality, you are not automatically wrong. Remember the text is open to new interpretations and ideas.
Permalink for this paragraph 1 Graff’s final point has caught my attention. “In short, reading books with comprehension, making arguments, writing papers and making comments in class discussion are social activities.” I love this. When reading a good piece of literature, or a horrible one, writing and talking about it is important to understanding it.
Permalink for this paragraph 0 English lovers need to lose the shy-stereotype and talk so we all become stronger in our understanding of literature!