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Published 4 years ago with 3 Comments

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  • skolor

    Counterpoint: being exposed to these novels in high school allowed the author to eventually grow to appreciate novels later. Even if the depths of the novels did not sink in at the time, being able to later reference back to previous readings of the novels when reading other "stuff" allowed for the later personal growth. The dead simple example: I am much more able to grasp literary devices the second reading of a novel, due to already knowing the plot and how it moves forward. This allows you to more readily identify the things the author is using to tell the story, rather than just soaking up the story being told. Its more complicated than that, however, as when I read any book I recognize the parts that are similar to other things I have read, and how it departs from the "classics". Without ever having read those classics, I have no foundation to grow upon.

    Furthermore, I find the list of "better" books odd. I read literature in specifically a literature course, why would you replace that with non-fiction? I did read a handful of those books, but in other courses, mostly in social studies of some sort. Is the proposal here that we should remove literature as a subject to be studied in high school, and instead make English a course to go more in depth into selected topics from other courses?

  • feloniousjones

    Perhaps American schools should teach skills to students instead if having them recite worthless facts and statistics.

  • Gozzin

    Yeah, we had to slog through forced reading in high school I did not give a fart about. Lucky for me,I was already reading nature and science fiction novels,so those forced reads were hardly a blip on the radar. I remember we had to read Shakespeare and they did not make a lick of sense till I saw them preformed at real Shakespeare festivals with traditional costumes, and on PBS as an adult. The light bulb then went off over my head and and I went:"Ohhhhh." I especially enjoyed The 12th. Knight.

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