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Re: [mythsoc] Subject: Ursula LeGuin's comments on the upcoming Earthsea series

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  • Stolzi
    ... From: Katie Glick ... I had such an awful teacher like that... Plus, she was so =flat=. An instance I have never forgotten: she had
    Message 1 of 10 , Nov 24, 2004
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      ----- Original Message -----
      From: "Katie Glick" <ktglick@...>

      > I used to get into endless
      > arguments with a high school english teacher who would teach books by
      > going through chapter by chapter and telling us what everything
      > "meant," instead of letting us all discuss and offer different
      > interpretations.
      >

      I had such an awful teacher like that... Plus, she was so =flat=. An
      instance I have never forgotten: she had us read Housman's brief lyric
      "Loveliest of trees, the cherry now.."

      Oh heck, I'll give ya the whole thing:


      LOVELIEST of trees, the cherry now
      Is hung with bloom along the bough,
      And stands about the woodland ride
      Wearing white for Eastertide.

      Now, of my threescore years and ten,
      Twenty will not come again,
      And take from seventy springs a score,
      It only leaves me fifty more.

      And since to look at things in bloom
      Fifty springs are little room,
      About the woodlands I will go
      To see the cherry hung with snow.

      This "means," Miss O. explained: "Don't wait to get a job until you're
      forty."


      Diamond Proudbrook
    • David Bratman
      Katie, my high-school literature teachers were not quite as virulent as yours, but they were bad enough that I wrote a paper consisting of a protest against
      Message 2 of 10 , Nov 24, 2004
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        Katie, my high-school literature teachers were not quite as virulent as
        yours, but they were bad enough that I wrote a paper consisting of a
        protest against treating literature as a giant "Search for the Hidden
        Meanings" game. My teacher did not like having her assumptions challenged,
        and retorted by giving me an F. I left the class and have never taken
        another class from an English Department, high school or college, since.
        (Yes, my college had a freshman comp requirement, but there were other ways
        to handle that.)

        A more wily instructor than yours could have responded to your question,
        "But how do you know the author intended that?", by claiming that the
        author's conscious intentions are irrelevant to the True Hidden Meanings,
        which are planted by the subconscious in accordance with the terms of
        Freudian or Jungian or whatever form of psychology is in at the moment.

        David Bratman
      • alexeik@aol.com
        In a message dated 11/25/4 3:05:25 AM, Diamond wrote:
        Message 3 of 10 , Nov 25, 2004
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          In a message dated 11/25/4 3:05:25 AM, Diamond wrote:

          << An

          instance I have never forgotten: she had us read Housman's brief lyric

          "Loveliest of trees, the cherry now.."


          Oh heck, I'll give ya the whole thing:>>

          By the way, for those who haven't read John Crowley's _The Translator_, his
          poet-protagonist is made to give a truly beautiful interpretation of that very
          poem in the context of a poetry class.
          Alexei
        • Lisa Deutsch Harrigan
          My Shakespeare teacher in high school said Question Authority and meant it. We discussed and questioned and argued and joked about every aspect of the
          Message 4 of 10 , Nov 29, 2004
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            My Shakespeare teacher in high school said "Question Authority" and
            meant it. We discussed and questioned and argued and joked about every
            aspect of the Shakespeare plays we read.

            He told us to bring in our own copies of the plays, so that we could
            make notes all over the plays themselves rather than on separate sheets
            of paper. When I brought in the All-in-one Collection from my mother's
            college days, with her notes already inside, he proclaimed "If you find
            anything interesting or contradictory, let me know." Occassionally, he'd
            look over to me and specifically ask "What did your mother's teacher say
            about that?"

            If we took a different interpretation on a bit of play, and he liked it
            he would give us a penny, technically for helping him with his job, but
            it was really for thinking outside the box. I once earned a whole nickel
            for a particularly good bit!

            He called Richard the Second, "Snooky Two", because his brother Richard
            was nicknamed Snooky. It went sideways from there.

            And the puns flew with great regularity. This was a man who loved his
            subject and wasn't afraid to test or expand his knowledge, even from
            high school kids.

            I still love Shakespeare as a result.

            Mythically yours,
            Lisa
          • Lisa Deutsch Harrigan
            Astrid Anderson was in a college lit class, and the professor was blathering about the deep meaning of a Science Fiction short story (I believe by Robert
            Message 5 of 10 , Nov 29, 2004
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              Astrid Anderson was in a college lit class, and the professor was
              blathering about the deep meaning of a Science Fiction short story (I
              believe by Robert Silverberg). Astrid came in the next day telling the
              teacher he was wrong, that Bob had dashed off the story because he
              needed rent money and had not given much deep thought at all into
              writing it. The teacher stared down at here and asked her what made her
              the authority and she answered "Well, he was over for dinner last night
              and I asked him." The teacher finally realized Astrid was related to
              Poul. (Astrid told me the story years ago, so full details are now
              fuzzy, but the story is true.)

              And the Rocky Raccoon Story. Steve Wozniak (founder of Apple), decided
              to go back to school and get the BS he didn't complete because work at
              Apple had gotten too hectic. He did this under the name of RR since he
              would be taking computer classes and he didn't want to intimidate the
              teachers. He had to take an Economics course and the Teacher blathered
              on about how the Guys who Founded Apple had done great market studies
              and much planning before they came out with the first Apple. Woz really
              ducked hard during the lecture. After he finished the course, he then
              went to the teacher, advised the teacher who he really was, and informed
              him that they hadn't planned ANYTHING. They just built the computer they
              wanted to buy. They were still winging it, building what they want to
              buy, but they made it look more professional.

              *sigh*

              Mythically yours,
              Lisa
            • David Bratman
              ... Yes, that sounds delightful. I had a high-school history teacher who was that good, and a good English comp teacher, but not in literature. I learned to
              Message 6 of 10 , Nov 30, 2004
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                At 07:22 PM 11/29/2004 -0800, Lisa Deutsch Harrigan wrote:
                >
                >My Shakespeare teacher in high school said "Question Authority" and
                >meant it. We discussed and questioned and argued and joked about every
                >aspect of the Shakespeare plays we read.

                Yes, that sounds delightful. I had a high-school history teacher who was
                that good, and a good English comp teacher, but not in literature.

                I learned to love Shakespeare by reading a lot of English history and going
                to performances of the plays.
              • David Bratman
                ... I can confirm hearing this story also. I recall, however, that she was in grade school at the time. On the other hand, Isaac Asimov recounted telling a
                Message 7 of 10 , Nov 30, 2004
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                  At 07:38 PM 11/29/2004 -0800, Lisa Deutsch Harrigan wrote:

                  >Astrid Anderson was in a college lit class,

                  I can confirm hearing this story also. I recall, however, that she was in
                  grade school at the time.

                  On the other hand, Isaac Asimov recounted telling a professor that nothing
                  of what the prof. had said about an Asimov story was in the author's mind
                  at the time he wrote it. And the prof replied, "Just because you wrote the
                  story, what makes you think you know anything about it?"

                  To which the answer should be, that he knows what the author intended, and
                  that ain't peanuts.

                  There is more to any good story than what the author consciously put in,
                  but that doesn't mean that anything that one finds in a story is
                  necessarily "there" in any meaningful sense. One's thought about a fat
                  novel could be, "This'll make a great doorstop," and it may even be true,
                  but surely that doesn't say anything meaningful about the contents except
                  "it's long" which you knew already.
                • jamcconney@aol.com
                  I learned to love Shakespeare by reading a lot of English history and going to performances of the plays. Yes, there s nothing like seeing a good
                  Message 8 of 10 , Nov 30, 2004
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                    I learned to love Shakespeare by reading a lot of English history and going
                    to performances of the plays.



                    Yes, there's nothing like seeing a good performance. I'm an English major
                    and of course I'd read Hamlet many times--but the reall eye-opener for me was
                    seeing Branaugh's full 4-hour version on television.

                    I thought I OUGHT to see it, didn't think I could spare four hours (and I'm
                    not really a big fan of Branaugh either) so I thought I would dip in for a few
                    minutes "just to see how they're going to handle the setting."

                    Well, needless to say, for four hours I sat there absolutely mesmerized.
                    Never second guess the Bard! The story moved faster than any cut-down version
                    I've ever seen and the plot was crystal clear. Even the Player-King's speech (so
                    dull on the page) functioned just as it did in Shgakespeare's day--as an
                    oration designed to give an aging player (Charlton Heston in this case) a chance
                    to chew a little scenery.

                    Of course part of the fun was spotting the celebrity cameos too....

                    Anne


                    [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                  • dianejoy@earthlink.net
                    I ve also had great teachers: one in history (college) and one in English (high school)who took us to see the film of *Romeo and Juliet* (Leonard Whiting and
                    Message 9 of 10 , Dec 1, 2004
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                      I've also had great teachers: one in history (college) and one in English
                      (high school)who took us to see the film of *Romeo and Juliet* (Leonard
                      Whiting and Olivia Hussey), and some very good ones. For the most part,
                      most teachers have been fine, but you either recall the really rotten ones,
                      or the very good ones.

                      Shakespeare must be *seen* to be appreciated fully. ---djb

                      Original Message:
                      -----------------
                      From: David Bratman dbratman@...
                      Date: Tue, 30 Nov 2004 07:36:56 -0800
                      To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
                      Subject: [mythsoc] Re: I was Lucky !



                      At 07:22 PM 11/29/2004 -0800, Lisa Deutsch Harrigan wrote:
                      >
                      >My Shakespeare teacher in high school said "Question Authority" and
                      >meant it. We discussed and questioned and argued and joked about every
                      >aspect of the Shakespeare plays we read.

                      Yes, that sounds delightful. I had a high-school history teacher who was
                      that good, and a good English comp teacher, but not in literature.

                      I learned to love Shakespeare by reading a lot of English history and going
                      to performances of the plays.





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