Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Wednesday, 4/1/2009


"Shooting an Elephant" by George Orwell
We talked about people's questions and observations as follows:
  • Yes, Orwell and Eric Blair were the same person.  :-)
  • Yes, even though he was born in India, he was still a British citizen.
  • British imperialism--a lot of us didn't understand their power and reach as a colonial power prior to WWII.
  • Orwell's style is blunt, honest, straightforward.
  • Orwell didn't want to kill the elephant--we talked about the reasons he ended up killing it anyway.  
  • We talked about South Africa--people were making some connections between the British rule in Burma (and India), and South Africa under apartheid, so we talked a bit about what it is to colonize a country, and rule it as a minority party.
Group Work
We got into our philosophy groups to discuss the metaphor questions over "Elephant" (p. 46, #11-15) and to complete the connotation/denotation sheet on page 47.

Death Sentences
  • We talked, again, about what the writers are saying about death, dying, life suffering, and grief.  People suggested ideas for the three prose pieces we've most recently read.

Random Acts of Racism
  • Yesterday (as a result of some discussion we had regarding the language in "A Rose for Emily") I asked people to be on the look-out for -isms of any kind.  Today a couple of people shared things that they had witnessed in the last twenty-four hours (racism, sexism).
  • This lead to a significant discussion of particularly loaded words--slurs--which we'll continue tomorrow and Friday, I'm sure.
  • Read Jack London's "To Build a Fire" on pages 48-87.  You'll take a quiz over it tomorrow.
  • Work on your villanelle--it is due on FRIDAY (one-day extension).
  • There were no major announcements or discussions.
  • People got right down to reading or working on their book reports, or both.
  • Lauren finished most of the typing during first block.  She has also done a lot of the formatting for pieces voted in thus far.
  • In fourth block, we read and selected quite a few pieces.
  • Art met to look through more submissions.
  • Layout met to consider paper color.
  • Publicity met to create an art thank-you letter for distribution next week.

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