Archive for May, 2011
The semester is coming to an end and we will soon be temporarily freed from literature, or will we? When I began this course I believed myself incapable of recognizing symbols in writing and critical thinking. However as the course continued I’ve gradually seen improvement in my abilities and mentality regarding works of all sorts. However not only did I gain critical thinking in literature, but I’ve also gained an understanding and respect for not only literature, but also poetry. Before this course I never truly enjoyed reading or performing poetry. For this part of the semester I’ve done a poetry reading and incorporated my major and interest into a presentation. I believe this portfolio will show my growth as an English major and also the various skills we learned through the whole semester.
This section of the portfolio is meant to illustrate our abilities to dig beyond the surface of a work. These entries go beyond just the bare minimum seen with other entries, and show my opinions expanded. While I prefer to share my opinions in class I’ve made an effort to also share these in depth opinions on my blog. My first depth entry is my critical presentation, in which I wrote an article and made a video regarding the decision to make the “Hunger Games” the summer reading assignment for 2011. This article took a lot of outside research and meetings to cover the opinions of both the students and teaches. My second entry is from “Catch-22” where I discuss the ever-prevalent abundance of corruption exposed by Heller.
This part of my portfolio shows my communication with other students in an attempt to expand and learn other ideas. Entries in this section are more than just saying “good job”, but sharing you opinion of another’s idea. In Chelsea Rickert’s blog entry I commented on her opinions of the Romeo-and-Juliet-like joint suicide. I also interacted by sharing my opinions on Korrin’s blog entry on Peeta.
This part of my portfolio is where I show my ability to have dialogues with other students. These entries usually include numerous responses from various students some agreeing some disagreeing. On Chelsie Bloam’s blog I had a discussion with other students about reading books we like. Some students disagreed and some students agreed, I found there is a little bit of truth in both. Also on Steph’s blog we discussed our feelings regarding the ending of the Hunger Games.
This section of my portfolio shows where I’ve done works that I’ve turned in early. These post can be either the minimum or depth entries. My first entry was my opinion of Foxface from the Hunger Games. My second entry is a blog entry on our poetry presentations.
This section is where all other assignments go that do no fit in the other categories. Here I look at Irony in the Hunger Games. The second entry is an example of one of our class activities where we discussed peer reviews.
Here is the link to my video interviews. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-r_2TPkgUHI
Please tell me what your thoughts and opinions.
Also my writing part was a journalistic article regarding the choice for the hunger games being the summer reading assignment.
Hunger Games: To read or not to Read
The Beloved, The English Patient, Clockwork Orange, and To Kill A Mockingbird are a few of many books educators consider to be college level reading material. However in recent years young adult novels have made their way into college classrooms. The Hunger Games is now making its way into Seton Hill University (SHU) as the proposed summer reading for 2011.
With over 800,000 books sold, the Hunger Games has become one of the most popular books of 2010, standing next to Stephen Meyer’s Twilight saga. Despite its violent nature and slight alcoholism Suzanne Collin’s Hunger Games is aimed toward younger audiences (12 and up).
Dr. Geoffrey Atkinson head of the summer reading committee states “I enjoyed reading this novel. I found it interesting and full of meaningful discussion points despite its target audience.”
The story follows Katniss Evergreen as she struggles in a post apocalyptic world controlled by the Capitol. Each year the Capitol holds the “Hunger Games”, in which two children from each of the 12 districts are forced to kill each other as viewers watch “games” from home.
Over the last couple years the SHU reading assignment has experienced a fall in student participation and hopes that using a popular novel will increase student involvement. “We always hope to get students engaged and actually reading the books, and this year we really hope more students will participate,” said Atkinson.
With plans to use The Hunger Games as the summer reading assignment for 2011, questions have been raised regarding the suitability of this novel as a college summer reading due to its unchallenging nature.
“While I’ve read the trilogy and consider the book to be worthwhile, but as students entering college the book is simply too undemanding,” stated Dr. John Atherton, associate professor of philosophy.
Across the nation The Hunger Game series has been integrated into the curriculum of middle school students, with few incidents regarding the book’s appropriateness. In New Hampshire local mom, Tracy LaSalle, became concerned with the books “gratuitous violence” after it gave her 11 yr old daughter nightmares.
Atkinson commented, “ We try to avoid controversial matters and racy subject matters, but college students are more than equipped to handle this level of content. While some may not like the violence, it will generate the discussion we need.”
The Hunger Games touches on many topics including government oppression, survival, and the horror of reality TV. With college students equipped to tackle the somewhat mature content of this novel, the only concern remains the book’s reading level.
“Students come to college to exceed the standards placed during high school. College students should be ready to tackle more challenging novels, not books used by middle school children. The university should not sacrifice substance for popularity just to gain student cooperation,” stated Dr. Atherton.