Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Class Gems

Some pithily efficacious remarks on the course texts made in the seminars this week: I'll blog them as they come in.
  1. "Joy Stone is Bridget Jones, for real this time," via classfellow I.O.
  2. I also loved the sublime succinctness of this recapitulation of the critical question around the Joy Stone character: "Is her growth warranted to her situation?"
  3. [À Propos Virginia Woolf, again from classfellow I.O.] "It is important not to confuse death and destruction with failure.In fact, sometimes the release of death or the destruction of an importantbarrier or aid can be a triumph in and of itself."
  4. Delightfully contrarian classfellow T.H.: "We were talking about how initially, Chanu was presented with ridicule, but how throughout the book he became more and more truthful and hit things right on the mark (we wondered why). I commented that in a way, the reader is very much like Chanu, or is represented by him in the book. This applies especially in academia, where theorists are commonly accused for thinking too much and not doing anything - just like Chanu, the academia is plagued by sensitive thought but no application of it to real world. Furthermore, Chanu’s inability to act is reflected in the reader, as he/she are unable to act on the book – we are both just passive observers/readers. The final comparison (I thought of this after class) is between Chanu and Monica Ali herself – just like him, she sees and understands/questions the problem, but approaches it very passively (rather than an activist approach) –by writing a novel. This, in the end, question whether literature can ever be a form of activism (I don’t know the answer to this)."

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