I love writing challenges. I love the feeling of embarking on a new project, with new goals and hopes. I am not so great at following through. This one, though, I don’t think I’ll have too many issues with completing. It’s already in my daily regimen to write over 500 words (I aim for 1500 daily), so that isn’t the problem. The question is… do I want to make it a blogging challenge? I like the idea of posting each day
I read To Kill A Mockingbird today. It’s been a long time since I read it last. It was interesting to read it again with a different life perspective. I’ve always thought it was fascinating that you can read the same words more than once and get a completely different experience each time, if you put some life-mileage between them. Anyway, I enjoyed it.
How I actually came to read the book again was kind of strange. Just last week a friend happened to bring it up in conversation. I remember agreeing with his point, but feeling frustrated with my lack of memory for the specifics of the storyline. I did not possess a copy of the book as of last week, and so promptly forgot much of the conversation. Then, last night, J and I went to Crowder’s and Murph’s. After watching Crowder beat the hell out of a TV with a baseball bat, I began to peruse his small bookcase for interesting titles. The last time I had done this, I’d commented on the high quality of The Giver, and Crowder had ended up giving it to me. To Kill A Mockingbird caught my eye this time, and the forgotten conversation came back to me. I plucked it out and told Crowder I was borrowing it (to which he replied that I could have that one as well). I deemed it fated. And so, I spent the better part of my day engrossed in the awe and adrenaline that comes with Boo Radley.
I found the story, for the most part, excellent.
Now I find myself contemplating its use in schools. When I was a child, stories such as this one and Huck Finn were a given as part of middle age curriculum. Now, these tales are practically gone from the education system until college. Why? I know why. I suppose we all know why.
I grew up in a South that was very cautious about its reputation as “racist.” We were deliberately presented with literature such as this to make us understand the depth of human fallibility. To remind us how easy it is to be completely and utterly wrong without ever realizing it. The language shocked us. Our teachers said, “Good, you should be shocked.”
Children today are almost never shocked. Even fairy tales have been sugar-coated. No one ever dies as a result of a poor choice. Mistakes are fixed with a change of heart and a sincere apology. What are we teaching our kids? Is is really in their best interest to teach them that consequences are either temporary or nonexistent? What will be the consequence of letting our children believe such lies?
I find myself of the side of those teachers. Be shocked. You should be shocked. Some things are worth fighting for, worth dying for. Never forget the massive mistakes we have made in the past. And when you see something that is wrong in the world, stand up and say something.
Go Set A Watchman is on my night stand. I don’t know if I have the heart to face it yet.
We love visiting our friends in the Netherlands, we always have a wonderful time together – and also a wonderful time when they visit us here in England! We became friends through our love of music, and first met in person about ten years ago. They live in a lovely part of the country, in […]
In honour of the man beloved by quotation compilers, Mark Twain House and Musuem are running the third annual writing competition. You don’t have to write in the style of Mark Twain in fact I get the impression from the rules that would be frowned upon. But you do have to be funny. Laugh out Loud funny
You can submit up to 7,000 words (which is a generous word count) plus “Previously published work is acceptable” (which is highly unusual). But they do add that it can’t have already won an award for humorous writing.
Deadline July 10, 2016 Winners will be notfied by September 12, 2016.
Children and young people are encouraged to enter. There are two age categories: 17 and under and 18 and over
$23 for adult entries and £13 for 17 and below.
Converting the adult fee, that’s just under £16 in sterling, about…
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