Bookbyte Blog

Posts tagged ‘literature’

Do College Classes Need Content Warnings?

The ratings reasoning for the long-forgotten, embarassingly '90s film 3 Ninjas Knuckle Up. Somehow, there were four movies in this series. It was a simpler time.

The ratings reasoning for the long-forgotten, embarassingly ’90s film 3 Ninjas Knuckle Up. Somehow, there were four movies in this series. It was a simpler time.

I am not a sensitive person. Maybe I saw too many Schwarzeneggerian shoot-‘em-ups. Maybe I played too many video games. Maybe I listened to too much metal and hip-hop. Or maybe it’s just because I liked to read. After all, Beowulf includes a detailed description of an arm getting torn of its socket at the shoulder, Tess of the D’urbervilles deals with a woman ostracized for becoming pregnant after a rape, and Catcher in the Rye includes a scene where the frequently profane underage protagonist hires a prostitute. And that’s just the books I read for school.

I’d like to propose a new acronym for these moments, whether it’s graphic content in literature, sensitive content in history, or full frontal content in art history: NSFWBSFS (not safe for work, but safe for school). (more…)

Trying to Turn English, Reading, & Literature Into a Numbers Game

readingbabyThere’s a problem that always seems to be at the root of the debate over education policy: When do we standardize and when do we personalize? If we don’t standardize enough, there’s no guarantee that everyone will receive the same opportunities and the same basic education. If we don’t personalize enough, we can ignore some really basic common sense in the interest of keeping everything “equal.” This post is about the second problem.

The institution of the Common Core Standards in most states tries to find measurable ways to ensure schools are meeting their state standards. For math, that’s not too hard. You just set the grade you should know your multiplication tables and the grade you should tackle geometry. For reading, things get trickier. That’s where the Lexile system comes into place. (more…)

The Bad (But Fun) Science of John Carter

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Source: Walt Disney Studios

In Edgar Rice Burroughs’ book A Princess of Mars, and in the film adaptation John Carter, out this week, I don’t think it would be a spoiler to say that the story takes a few liberties with science. Turns out Mars isn’t populated by nomadic tribes of green people and the atmosphere is not safe for shirtless men.

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What College Does to Your Casual Reading Habits

My best guess is that I spent around 40 percent of my college education reading books. Another 25 percent was spent writing, another 25 spent in the art studio, and around 8 in classes. I’d mark two percentage points as “Other,” which includes pseudo-educational experiences like seeing pretentious indie films, hanging out at the campus radio station, or getting into a religious conversation with a Rastafarian shop clerk. I’m leaving out the large number of not-particularly educational experiences like re-watching Arrested Development and Chapelle’s Show on DVD for the 50th time, using cafeteria trays as makeshift sleds, and various anecdotes that I probably shouldn’t write down if I ever want to pursue an elected office.

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