Can you guess?

Fun challenge for today- can you guess which literary duo is depicted below?

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Winner gets… a big smile? If that can be a prize….

Have a great day! Read a lot! (I just started Zora Neale Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God myself.)

Nicole

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Why I Read (and Write)

So I was flipping through my WordPress Reader in a homework break, and I came across this wonderful thing:

Why I write. 

And it instantly took me back to several things; namely, why I read. I had managed to sum it up into one sentence several weeks ago, or rather, how I view reading. Here it goes:

Books do not give knowledge but instead increased complexity in the way I view the world.

I can put it in a lot more words than that too. Here goes some more letters, consonants, vowels, on the subject:

I read because it’s one of the first things I took on as something I really loved, and it stuck. I loved it then, and I love it now.

I read because it makes me feel connected to other people out there; the writers, other readers, distant past forms of myself.

I read because it’s a form of creating myself (another story– finding myself in my marginalia).

And then, for whatever (seemingly odd, crazy, irrational) reason, I write about it.

I write because there seems to be some solidarity about it.

I write because it feels concrete, even when it’s totally not.

I write because I’m an egocentric, anthropocentric human being who feels that their every thought has to be addressed and recorded for posterity (I apologize for the blunt negativity of this one).

Together, reading and writing form a large part of who I define myself to be, and what I do both in and out of school (which does define me, in a sense).

If you’re a reader, a writer, a dreamer, why do you do what you do?

Nicole

I am not an animal person.

I’m not an animal person. At all. I suppose I could give most of the credit to my dad for this one, as he passed that gene on to me for sure. My friends all go, “What?! How can you not like animals?!” Then I just say, “I don’t. I’m not an animal person.”

Therefore, Cathy Woodman’s book titled City Girl, Country Vet was probably not the best book for me to buy. Yet guess what? I did it anyways. It was sitting on my shelf at home of “Books to Read” for a very long time, and then when I was home over break a couple weeks ago, I picked it up and it was over within two days.

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Chicago Doesn’t Grow Mangoes! (AKA Why I Love Sandra Cisneros)

So. Sandra Cisneros. She’s awesome. Yeah. And that title about tropical fruit agriculture in the American middle west? That’s just because I read The House on Mango Street (set in Chicago) and fell desperately in love with the writing of Sandra Cisneros.

 

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Miss Representation

Needed to reblog this one. As a girl exploring (or potentially lost in the expansive nature of) math and science, and the sea of doubt that follow them when it comes to a girl’s success in the fields, this matters to me. Plus, the Daisy Buchanan quote a little more than halfway down is one of my favorites- besides the other Great Gatsby ones “Her voice is full of money,” and the incredible ending (and Fitzgerald’s epigraph), “So we beat on, boats against the current, born back ceaselessly into the past.” Are our attitudes “born back ceaselessly” too? About these same things? How would/could we break the cycle? Would we want to?
Questions of mine as I was reading. A five minute reflection/reassessment afterwards is necessary, but this is a great piece to read. Makes me want to do something, but presented the harsh reality along with it.
Nicole

Super Philosophy Bros

I had no idea how profoundly my vision would be altered by teaching Feminist Perspectives this fall. Everywhere I look now, I can’t help but magnify the gross patriarchy pervading every corner of our daily experience. And it wasn’t that I was ignorant to this phenomenon prior to the class, but I was privileged with the opportunity (as a white male) to not really worry about it. Sure, it was a problem, and one that needed desperate attention. Just not my attention. After all, it wasn’t taking anything away from me. Gender as a social construct only truly affects women anyway, right?
“The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don’t have any.” –Alice Walker, epigraph to Miss Representation
Two documentaries that effectively underscore the parasitic and paralytic power of media, especially in dictating (what end up seeming like natural) gender norms: The Codes of…

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What (or rather, Who) I’m Reading

A quick look into my book-reading brain. Well, reading in general. I read other stuff too.

Flannery O’Connor has taken over my literary standards of what makes short fiction amazing. I love her. So much. Only two stories into Everything That Rises Must Converge and I cannot possibly stop now.

Sandra Cisneros. On a quest to find more of her stuff to read. The House on Mango Street kept me spellbound and she might beat out Frank McCourt in talking about childhood poverty, which is a feat.

 

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