Reading Post 5 “An Indian Story” Roger Jack

I liked this selection because it’s a very relatable story.  Jack had to deal with the lost of his mother and his aunt became a mother figure for him.  My mother and father divorced when I was around 5 and, like Jack, I had found someone that became someone that looked up to.  My great uncle reminds me a lot of Jack’s Aunt Greta.  He also was a very wise person who acted older than he really was. 

One part of this selection that I found interesting was when Aunt Greta says “…good Indians remember two things: their humor and their history.  These are the elements that dictate our culture and our survival in this crazy world.”  I really liked this statement and I believe this could be applied to culture in general.  The history of every culture keeps its traditions and beliefs going from generation to generation.  I think Aunt Greta captures this when she says “If these are somehow destroyed or forgotten, we would be doomed to extinction.”

 The deep relationship that Jack has with his aunt is shown in many ways throughout the whole selection.  With every trip they took together, the two grew even tighter.  I felt like Aunt Greta passed her wisdom along to Jack every chance that she could.  On the trip when he gets drunk and gets arrested, I don’t believe Aunt Greta was mad at him.  I think, like Jack’s father said, she believed that she failed with bringing him up right. I think she felt that all of the wisdom she had been trying to teach him had gone untaught.  When they begin to talk about the situation, I think she begins to notice that Jack has taken in everything that she has been trying to teach him over the many years.

Add a comment January 21, 2010

Reading Post 4 “Looking for Work” Gary Soto

In this selection, Gary Soto is looking back on a time of his life when he was 9.  He envisions his not so “rich” life being a life like that of a television family.  To me, a life that is “rich” doesn’t necessarily mean of wealth.  I believe that I have a very rich life but nowhere near wealthy.  I say this because I have a home, a family, and other people around me that love and accept me for who I am. 

I think Soto was a strong boy to go out looking for work to earn money on his own.  But even though Soto goes out looking for the wealth, I think he misses the true richness of his family.  He talks about the normal eating times with his family where they each talk about their days.  He doesn’t take the time to notice that this in itself is something that some other people wish that their families did and he should appreciate it a lot more.  When Soto highlights such family times as the pool outing, the memory of him and Little John, and the “growing-up” of his sister, it seems like he starts to realize the value of his family. 

The fact that Soto believes that the way his family looked was the reason why white people hated them, gave reason to why he wanted to be like the TV families.   I think he believed that the only way his family would be accepted into society is to conform to the traditional society image.  I think when Soto says, “…the unkillable kids of the very poor, who got shaken up, brushed off, and climbed into another one to try again” he symbolizes what his people do.  It describes how even when they fail at something, they continue to persevere until they get it right.

Add a comment January 12, 2010

Reading Post 3, “From Fly-Girls to Bitches and Hos” Joan Morgan

I found this selection very interesting.  Even though Morgan stresses that she is a big feminist, you would definitely be able to tell through her writing even if she didn’t.  There are a few things that I really think she discussed in a great way.   The drastic drop of two-parent homes in the black community and the amount of young black deaths is alarming.  I don’t think that rap is a cause of this but I do believe that the black community is in a state that seriously needs some help to regain composure.  I know that there are a lot of positive rap songs and I believe there should be way more than there is now.

Like Morgan, I believe that the fact that black females sort of “accept” the degrading of some rap music makes it seem as if it is okay to refer to females in such a manner but I think that like the males, females too have underlying reasons why they may not seem to be phased by the name calling.  It just seems to me that a lot of things need to be done to insure that the generations behind us don’t grow up being desensitized by the subject the way that we did.

I don’t think that all black females, males, or rappers should be put into the category that it seems like Morgan puts them in.  It’s like she says all rappers are bringing down the black community or all black females are “trickin’” hos.  This is really the only thing I didn’t like about this selection.  I never think any person should be into a category.  To me, every person is an individual with different personalities, beliefs, and opinions.

Add a comment January 7, 2010

Reading Post 2, “From Changing American Families” Judy Aulette

I liked how this selection showed the many differences between the different social classes and races of the people in a society.  It’s like the amount of money a person has and their standing in society shapes how they raise their children and live their lives.  One of the points that I found interesting was the difference between how upper class families and working class families choose the person they marry.  Although upper class families may love the person they marry, they are forced to marry someone in the similar class as them who has the same standings as them in order to keep their wealth stable.  I believe that this is how certain traditions, beliefs, and views are created and kept within a family.

I also liked how Carol Stack investigated the Moynihan thesis of African American families.  Being from an African American working class family, I understand and agree with a lot of things that Stack concluded from her research.  I’m part of and know even more networks of kin and nonkin relationships.  I believe that this is a survival technique for us.  Knowing that you can ask for help from someone in your time of need or knowing that you are able to help someone in need is one of the most rewarding things.  In some situations, you can actually rely on people in your extended family before the people in your immediate family.

A line that really sparked my interest was “necessity forced me to do things which I had preciously ignored” (pg.74).  I think one example, as we can see today, there are more stay at home dads.  A major reason this is happening is because of the economy.  Fathers may lose their job which forces the women to become the “bread winners” of the family while the husband stays home and raises the kids.  It shows that in a state of urgency, no matter what your gender or authority is in your family, you must adapt and learn how to make things work.

Add a comment December 17, 2009

Reading Post 1, “Idiot Nation” by Michael Moore

Reading Post 1

I really enjoyed reading this selection.  Michael Moore has always known how to take a very serious subject and add a twist of humor, although it shouldn’t be humorous at all because it’s all truth that he backs up with facts.  I love how he gets you thinking more critically about the underlying basis of some issues such as how teachers are blamed for the current standings of education and kids these days.  Then Michael gets you to thinking about the conditions that teachers have to deal with like outdated books, no kind of funding, and a very slack paycheck.  Even though most teachers don’t become teachers for the money, why shouldn’t they get paid more?   The point that I liked the most that Moore made was how higher people in society could expect students to retain information that they don’t even know themselves.  I strongly believe that people should, like the old saying goes, practice what you preach. 

Another point that Moore made that I really liked was when he said that “all people are actually good at their core.”  I liked this statement because although he’s pretty much bashing a lot of people in this selection it’s like he still gives credit when it’s due.

I liked how Moore gave credit to the programs that actually encourage students to learn and read like the Pizza Hut “Book-it!” program.  I remember these programs in my schools and I do honestly believe that they work and there should be more like them.  As far as using the students for marketing and advertising, I think that if the effort used to push such things were actually put into objectives that could further more educational and valuable things that students could use in their futures, more students would have the tools that they need to be successful.  It seems like the schools are more interested in money than the students.  I wonder if the money that they receive for all the advertising and marketing even goes towards anything that benefits the students at all.

Add a comment December 10, 2009

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