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McLuhan (91-180) Agenda Item & Informal Reflection...

Agenda Item: “Teachers in the middle ages regarded the Bible as a school book par excellence. The little clerk learned his letters from the Psalter, and the Bible would be used in teaching him the liberal arts.” - Beryl Smalley as quoted by McLuhan on pg 99.

I chose this agenda item because it stuck out to me. It had a little bit to do with the topic that I discussed in my research paper. In my paper I referenced the teaching of African American slaves to read the Bible by Puritans in the seventeenth century. The Puritans believed that if there was anything that a slave needed to know it was how to read the scriptures.

The use of the Bible as a teaching tool is something that has gone on for years. In class Jerz mentioned the Amish’s use of the Bible as a primary teaching text in regard to literacy. Though there are certain differences between Biblical literacy and using the Bible to obtain literacy. In the middle ages the Bible was considered one of the most important texts that people used in teaching.

- I commented on Kayla Sawyer's blog entry regarding manuscript culture. I commented that the idea of reading as a private experience is one that can be examined on many levels. I have always believed that reading alone brings a sense of intimacy to the table. Reading out loud and in groups can change the opinions that we harbor about a given text because of something as trivial as the inflections in the reader's voice.

- I also commented on Dani Choynowski's entry on this reading. I would like to think that when we take our spoken words and put them on to paper that it does not mean we must sacrifice any of the messages we are trying to get across. I personally feel like that when we speak we must be condensed in our thinking and that print culture allows us to elaborate upon these ideas further. It is interesting that you mention the words being imprinted into our minds. I feel like a good orator can have the same effect on our minds as an excellent author.

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