Thursday, February 20, 2014

Keep on Pushing that Rock

First Draft:

Zora Neal Hurston wrote a really interesting novel about what it's like to be a black person growing up a long time ago called There Eyes were Watching God.  It's really iteresting to compare how this book is similar to and different from Hemmingways book that he wrote called The Sun Also Rises about a veteran of the Vietnam War that was injured in his knee and then met a girl just like the characters in Zora's book did.


My Comments:

This paper needs extensive revision.  There are several factual errors, which severely damage your ability to argue convincingly for your thesis.  In fact, that thesis itself is vague, and you will find it easier to write and revise this paper if you make it more specific.  For example, you could argue that Hurston's language reflects the way she wants the reader to regard the characters, just as Hemingway's simplicity of language reflects the way he paints Jake as an emotionally damaged casualty of war.  Perhaps you should stop by my office and we could work on it together.  Remember the revision is due next week.  I have office hours Tuesday and Wednesday, so let me know if you can make those.  If not, I'll be glad to make an appointment late in the afternoon or early in the morning on either of those days.


Revision:

Zora Neal Huston wrote a really interesting novel about what it's like to be a black person growing up a long time ago called Their Eyes where Watching God.  It's really iteresting to compare how this book is similar to and different from Hemmingways' book that he wrote called "The Sun Also Rises" about a veteran of th War that was injured in his knee and then met a girl just like the characters in Zora's book did.

Professor Chiltepin

6 comments:

  1. You're awfully harsh, considering the kid picked up on the very subtle hints that Jake had used a time machine so he could fight in Viet Nam. It's also very impressive he picked up on the fact that it was a knee injury. Most people think Jake was impotent, but the tinfoil underpants he wore while riding the time machine protected his man-parts. It was his knee that made him struggle with women. You know how shallow women can be when it comes to a man and his knees.

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  2. Ah, the comparison for comparison' sake. I'm just ipmressed they got Zora Neal Hurston's name correct. I cannot tell you how many Nora Zeal Thurstons wrote "The Gilded Six Bits" in my class.

    I offer you the following: Zora Neal Hurston's book Their Eyes were Watching God can be compared to a chair. The characters in the book have legs, and chairs have legs. The characters in the book have backs, and chairs have backs. One could also argue that the characters in the book are overburdened from being sat on. There is no point to this comparison, other than to point out that two things can be compared. I hope you like it a lot because I put no effort into it and now want an A for that lack of effort.

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    Replies
    1. Chairs can be made of wood. The characters are described on pages of the book which are made from wood pulp. That's quite a coincidence. Or is it?

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    2. You are wasted in the sciences, BB. :)

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  3. And now I'm going to have to avoid teaching Their Eyes Were Watching God and/or The Sun Also Rises until the comments in this thread disappear from the internet (i.e. forever), for fear I'll see them coming back at me in a paper, from a student who's convinced that a blog frequented by professors must be a "credible source."

    Sadly, Prof. C's "revision" scenario looks all too familiar, as do the weird comparison/contrast-based theses. I have lately taken to telling students that, while they're welcome to use comparison and contrast as a place to start their analysis, they should avoid the words "similar" and "different," especially in theses and topic sentences to paragraphs. This puzzles some of them no end, but it seems to help. A bit.

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  4. I hope you wore gloves when you handled that paper. I'm feeling a bit stoopider after my indirect encounter with it. I can only imagine the apoptotic pathways that could have been activated in your brain should you have contacted it directly.

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