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Assigned Reading: What Stands Out?

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  • #31
    Re: Assigned Reading: What Stands Out?

    this list reminds me:

    The Martian Chronicles. Had to read it in my soph year, and I remember being turned off initially, but then enjoying it upon rereading it several times.

    pax

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    • #32
      Re: Assigned Reading: What Stands Out?

      Originally posted by Pua'i Mana'o View Post
      if ever there was a writer who thought the manner in which to write deep prose was by playing string games with her own tripe, Ayn Rand be her name. The Fountainhead and Atlas Shrugged both were her odes to Self.
      Huh? Isn't that what fiction is all about?

      The Fountainhead - Capable monomaniac strives to achieve dream. Less capable strive to hinder him. I suppose Ayn Rand nearly achieved the success she sought and, perhaps, along the way she encountered difficulties. Yes, this qualifies. Bravo, author reveals inner self [along with pet peeves].

      Atlas Shrugged - 'Stop the world, I want to get off...' An off-the-mark attempt to reveal a 'Utopia' completely counter to the communism of the USSR [and western tendencies in that direction]. Her reactive disgust of a system designed to punish ability and reward sloth and dereliction ('from each according to his abilities, to each according to his need') led to a lack of compassion for the weak. Yes, the flawed author shows flaws in her works.

      These are good books, though a wee bit racy in their ideology. I don't believe they offer an instruction manual for a successful society, but they do point to the value of a job well done. The individualism espoused is a tad ridiculous, but the idea of self-sufficiency and competency has always been attractive.
      All in all - love the books, not so much the author.
      May I always be found beneath your contempt.

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      • #33
        Re: Assigned Reading: What Stands Out?

        Thanks for the contributions. Please keep 'em coming. And you ardent readers are encouraged to friend me at GoodReads.com. My profile is here.
        But I'm disturbed! I'm depressed! I'm inadequate! I GOT IT ALL! (George Costanza)
        GrouchyTeacher.com

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        • #34
          Re: Assigned Reading: What Stands Out?

          One of our high school history teachers used to assign us newspaper articles in the daily paper on current events, then he'd bring in that day's daily paper, read the article and we'd discuss it. It was topic-based, so there wasn't any particular article he'd assign and quiz us on, and it wasn't graded, but he just wanted to make sure we were all in touch with what was happening in the world.

          I've read the daily news ever since I could read, as it's a thing our entire family does.
          sigpic The Tasty Island

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          • #35
            Re: Assigned Reading: What Stands Out?

            I've been pondering this thread since it was started and continue to have a hard time composing a list, the reason being that I can't remember ever not reading voraciously and don't remember which books were assigned and which weren't. I've come up with only a few thoughts on reading that I know for certain was assigned.

            As a boomer, my life was shaped by my parents' and grandparents' experiences during The Great Depression. I considered that era "ancient history" which had nothing to do with me until I read The Grapes of Wrath. It was a "light bulb going on" experience for me and stimulated what was probably my first true experience with compassion - certainly my first experience with trying to understand why my parents were who they were.

            New Orleans had a great repertory theatre in the sixties. We attended one or two plays a year, and the original literature that inspired the plays was required reading. The dual exposure makes some of those stand out in my feeble, not-to-be-trusted memory. A Midsummer Night's Dream and Romeo and Juliet convinced me that Shakespeare was worthy of a second look. The Crucible and The Scarlet Letter brought my first awareness of religious intolerance. The Chairs and The Chocolate Creampuff Soldier convinced me that just because something is published or performed doesn't necessarily mean that it's any good.

            O. Henry, Guy DeMaupessant and Saki were featured during a semester devoted to the short story. I'm still in awe of writers who can pack so much, so adroitly into so few words. Short stories still devour a lot of my reading time.

            Robert Frost was the first poet I read with any understanding at all and is still a favorite. Sadly, though, the memory that surfaces first when I see his name is the classroom giggles that accompanied his little horse thinking it "queer."

            Funny, isn't it, that I can still recall every lit teacher I ever had (and fondly, at that) though my memory of specifically what they taught has grown a bit spotty. I have no doubt, though, that their lessons still shape my choices and perceptions in reading.
            Last edited by skeeterbess; January 6, 2008, 12:24 PM. Reason: typo
            Bloggin my way to the big time

            http://skeetsstuff.skeeterbess.com/

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            • #36
              Re: Assigned Reading: What Stands Out?

              Originally posted by acousticlady View Post
              OK - I know this is OT but this statement has been bugging me for 2 days now. She actually said that? And you didn't slap her in the face? Maybe not literally - but....... isn't that type of comment against the law? Maybe she should know how it spurred you to read - as she's being fired! Tell her you read up on discrimination laws. Sorry - but that really bugged me.
              I would've replied sooner, but I didn't see your note until now.

              No, I did not "literally" slap her in the face. I didn't have to, she felt the sting everytime she asked for MY help! She would ask for clarification on instructions to assigned projects. My response would be, "What don't you get? It's written in English, right?" LOL Then the rest of the day I'd make comments like, "I can't believe you didn't get it, especially since it IS written in English." (chuckle, chuckle) If I said it loud enough and others were around, they would question me on what was so funny. I would explain my story. She didn't have a lot of friends to begin with, but everyday she was losing more. She quit a month later. I heard she moved back to Texas.

              Coup de grace? I think so! And, I didn't have to lift a finger, though it was awfully tempting.
              A proud sponsor of
              http://www.haleamano.com

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              • #37
                Re: Assigned Reading: What Stands Out?

                "To Kill a Mockingbird." I'm reading it now for the second time and love it!
                'Alika

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                • #38
                  Re: Assigned Reading: What Stands Out?

                  Oh, and also, "The Catcher in the Rye." Gotta have some sympathy for Holden, yeah?
                  'Alika

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                  • #39
                    Re: Assigned Reading: What Stands Out?

                    Maya Angelou's work. Especially when I got to hear her recite her poems herself. It was amazing! I loved the depth of emotion and swing of words. If possible, students should hear literature before they read it. And hearing it read by the writer would be even better, even though rarely possible.
                    Wendi Lau

                    www.LocalKineGames.com

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                    • #40
                      Re: Assigned Reading: What Stands Out?

                      When I was in the 6th grade, my mother gave me an early edition hard cover of "Island of The Blue Dolphins" and that has been my favorite book since. I was never assigned to read it in school, but there was something about the story that kept my interest.
                      One that was assigned to me that stood out was "Fahrenheit 451." Everyone in my class hated it, by I loved it.

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                      • #41
                        Re: Assigned Reading: What Stands Out?

                        Originally posted by mergecross View Post
                        One that was assigned to me that stood out was "Fahrenheit 451." Everyone in my class hated it, by I loved it.
                        Ah, Ray Bradbury! I totally LOVE him! He is sooooo superdeedooper! The way he writes is so sense-laden. You can feel, see, touch, taste, and smell the experiences he describes. Stephen King does this as well but in a more cutting, almost television like way. Bradbury is more subtle, more poetic and definitely more heart-warming. Can you believe, in one college class about juvenile literature, I was assigned the S. King story about the car, Christine. That was interesting and probably would be a good comparison piece for a high school english class.

                        Another book I remember being assigned is an S. E. Hinton book, The Outsiders. When it was assigned, I totally could not relate, and that was in high school.
                        Wendi Lau

                        www.LocalKineGames.com

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                        • #42
                          Re: Assigned Reading: What Stands Out?

                          Originally posted by mergecross View Post
                          One that was assigned to me that stood out was "Fahrenheit 451." Everyone in my class hated it, by I loved it.
                          I was particularly moved by the concept of people "becoming" banned books.

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                          • #43
                            Re: Assigned Reading: What Stands Out?

                            Originally posted by salmoned View Post
                            As a science major, I must admit a fondness for the books I couldn't bear to sell back to the 1/2 price book store; 'General Zoology', 'Organic Chemistry', 'The Calculus', and 'Thermodynamics'.
                            Well, going in that direction, there's "The Science of Sound" . (BTW-I still have every textbook I ever purchased).

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                            • #44
                              Re: Assigned Reading: What Stands Out?

                              Hard to say, since I loved to read so much I can't remember what I read because I wanted to and what I read because I had to.

                              But some things I definitely remember being assigned to read: The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton, in intermediate school. Loved it. Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance in high school. HATED it. Couldn't figure out what the hell it was supposed to be about. I wrote a report on it and somehow ended up getting a B, which tells me the teacher probably didn't understand it either. The Rime of the Ancient Mariner by Coleridge, LOVED it. I kept reading it over and over, which was weird since I usualy didn't go for poetry.

                              On a semi-related note, I do not believe in making students read Shakespeare, unless they are specifically studying the English language of that period. The reason: Shakespeare's plays were meant to be watched, by a largely illiterate audience. They were not meant to be read by anyone except the actors performing in them. I love watching Shakespeare plays; I hate reading them.
                              "Luke, help me take this mask off. Just for once, let me look at you with my own eyes. No, it turns the other way, Luke. To the left. No, to your left. Push down and twist. Line up the little arrows. Never mind, I'll do it."

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