Thursday, June 25, 2009

Michelle Kerns, Book Examiner, has written another great article:

Go read the complete article!

Quoted Highlights:

"For all the wishy-washy, touchy-feely gobbeldy-gook that gets thrown about when discussing books, the business of writing quality literature -- or writing anything worth reading, period -- is governed by the same rock-solid, no-nonsense rules that govern the mastery of any art form:
1. Expose yourself to the masters.
2. Learn what they did to achieve their effects.
3. Learn how to do it yourself.
4. Practice.
5. Repeat.
THERE IS NO OTHER WAY TO BECOME PROFICIENT IN YOUR ART, whether you're talking about becoming a musician or a painter or a sculptor or a macrame expert. "

"Now, you tell me -- do you honestly think that a high school English class that is focusing its attention on the emotional ramifications of drug use or how tough life is as a homosexual in a heterosexual world is going to produce more proficient readers and writers?
The purpose of a high school English class should be this, and this alone: to produce young readers that are familiar with Western civilization's major authors and their works, to aquaint them with the main aspects of the various literary movements throughout literary history, and to teach them the specific techniques these authors used to produce their greatest works."

"ANY English class that is diluted by a political or social science agenda is going to suffer, and, I guarantee you, it isn't going to be the social science aspect that suffers. The end result will be high school graduates that go tripping off to college lacking the English literature foundation they sorely need. This isn't just a shameful failure of the public school system -- it's a travesty."

"Do I think that there should be much MORE attention paid to classic authors in a high school English class? Yes. Do I think that the Chapman High School English classes were being hijacked by an agenda that did NOT include proficiency in English literature? Oh, hell, yes."

"There's plenty of time for drugs and sex and what-have-you. That period of time in a young person's life is officially known as College. Until they get there though, and are out from under the sheltering umbrella of the coerced taxpayer, their training should be 100% agenda-free: the math class should be just math; the music class, just music; and the English class? Just the writing, ma'am. Just the writing. And if you're reading the right stuff, that's all you need."

Really, go read Michelle Kerns!

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