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Catcher in the Rye dropped from US school curriculum [replaced with environmental propaganda]
telegraph.co.uk ^ | December 7, 2012

Posted on 12/07/2012 10:25:09 AM PST by grundle

American literature classics are to be replaced by insulation manuals and plant inventories in US classrooms by 2014.

A new school curriculum which will affect 46 out of 50 states will make it compulsory for at least 70 per cent of books studied to be non-fiction, in an effort to ready pupils for the workplace.

Books such as JD Salinger's Catcher in the Rye and Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird will be replaced by "informational texts" approved by the Common Core State Standards.

Suggested non-fiction texts include Recommended Levels of Insulation by the the US Environmental Protection Agency, and the Invasive Plant Inventory, by California's Invasive Plant Council.

The new educational standards have the backing of the influential National Governors' Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers, and are being part-funded by a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Related Articles

Letters reveal the secret side of JD Salinger 27 Jan 2011

Why Harper Lee has remained silent 01 May 2011

JD Salinger 28 Jan 2010

Jamie Highfill, a teacher at Woodland Junior High School in Arkansas, told the Times that the directive was bad for a well-rounded education.

"I'm afraid we are taking out all imaginative reading and creativity in our English classes.

"In the end, education has to be about more than simply ensuring that kids can get a job. Isn't it supposed to be about making well-rounded citizens?"

Supporters of the directive argue that it will help pupils to develop the ability to write concisely and factually, which will be more useful in the workplace than a knowledge of Shakespeare.

(Excerpt) Read more at telegraph.co.uk ...


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Miscellaneous
KEYWORDS: leftismoncampus; publicschools; purge; readinglist; salinger
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1 posted on 12/07/2012 10:25:13 AM PST by grundle
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To: grundle
The passing of an era.

Perhaps there will be a whole new generation of disturbed stalkers mumbling to themselves, but with copies of "Recommended Levels of Insulation" in their trenchcoat pockets instead of "The Catcher In The Rye."

2 posted on 12/07/2012 10:28:36 AM PST by wideawake
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To: grundle
This is cultural vandalism, educational malpractice and -- as I see it --- psychological child abuse. It's not far from what Paul Goodman had in mind when he wrote "Growing Up Absurd," (1962) although it's actually much worse now, 50 years later.

It's Reason #8979458548 to Home School, no matter what the sacrifices.

You wouldn't trust these brain-deadeners with your car keys, your checkbook or your Online Banking password, would you? Why on God's green earth would you trust them with something imcomparably more precious: the mind of your child?

3 posted on 12/07/2012 10:32:23 AM PST by Mrs. Don-o ("God bless the child that's got his own." Billie Holiday / Arthur Herzog Jr)
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To: grundle
This is cultural vandalism, educational malpractice and -- as I see it --- psychological child abuse. It's not far from what Paul Goodman had in mind when he wrote "Growing Up Absurd," (1962) although it's actually much worse now, 50 years later.

It's Reason #8979458548 to Home School, no matter what the sacrifices.

You wouldn't trust these brain-deadeners with your car keys, your checkbook or your Online Banking password, would you? Why on God's green earth would you trust them with something imcomparably more precious: the mind of your child?

4 posted on 12/07/2012 10:32:32 AM PST by Mrs. Don-o ("God bless the child that's got his own." Billie Holiday / Arthur Herzog Jr)
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To: grundle

One trashy, worthless book replaced with several worthless books...


5 posted on 12/07/2012 10:33:23 AM PST by ROLF of the HILL COUNTRY
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To: grundle
How can the libs suddenly hate “Catcher”? (Ah yes; it’s because the NYT declared him to be a “whining preppy” and a “rich kid” that the revolutionaries can’t relate to, rather than his usual image as the “alienated anti-hero” that the libs used to love so much that they rammed him down our throats for several generations.)
6 posted on 12/07/2012 10:34:28 AM PST by Olog-hai
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To: grundle

With 3 out of 5 governors being Republican, there’s no excuse for their backing this drivel.

Rather, this is the sort of thing Romney could have run against!


7 posted on 12/07/2012 10:37:22 AM PST by 9YearLurker
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To: ROLF of the HILL COUNTRY
Went to an all catholic girls high school. This was required reading. I read a couple of pages...and said no thanks...it's trash. To my surprise...they said okay...

Give me O'Henry. I think ALL his works should be read.

8 posted on 12/07/2012 10:37:53 AM PST by Sacajaweau
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To: grundle

“Supporters of the directive argue that it will help pupils to develop the ability to write concisely and factually, which will be more useful in the workplace than a knowledge of Shakespeare.”

I’d argue that a knowledge of Shakespeare will help pupils develop the ability to THINK, which is a prerequisite to writing concisely and factually.


9 posted on 12/07/2012 10:40:58 AM PST by Boogieman
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To: Sacajaweau

But O’Henry will not be read either. No more Great Works in Literature. Schoolchildren will learn all about Obama politics and will be taught it is all the truth. Pravda Media and now USSR teaching in our schools.


10 posted on 12/07/2012 10:42:23 AM PST by originalbuckeye
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To: Sacajaweau
Got sent to the principal's office in 1971 for writing a parody on this trashy novel which I titled "Shortstop in the Wheat."

I won't go into details, but lets just say that, looking back at it now, I deserved the resulting detention. Had I wrote it today, I would probably be considered talented and witty.

11 posted on 12/07/2012 10:45:30 AM PST by Vigilanteman (Obama: Fake black man. Fake Messiah. Fake American. How many fakes can you fit in one Zer0?)
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To: grundle

Catcher in the Rye had its issues. To Kill remains one of my top favorite books.

But -

Catcher can be used to really reinforce sexual obsession and stalkiness. It is not about a mentally healthy person, but a snarky jerk. And To Kill can reinforce black on white hatred, although our hero is white, so is are our villains; the victim is black.

So if the teacher teaches the books in a politically correct way, I am not too enthusiastic. If the student is left to discover the author and his text on his own, well and good.


12 posted on 12/07/2012 10:46:10 AM PST by Persevero (Homeschooling for Excellence since 1992)
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To: grundle
Catcher in the Rye dropped from US school curriculum

Always hated that book.

Too bad they are not replacing it with something decent.

13 posted on 12/07/2012 10:47:35 AM PST by Harmless Teddy Bear (Fate plays chess and you don't find out until too late that he's been using two queens all along)
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To: grundle
A new school curriculum which will affect 46 out of 50 states will make it compulsory for at least 70 per cent of books studied to be non-fiction, in an effort to ready pupils for the workplace.

Don't see why this notion, as such, is inherently bad.

There is a lot of great writing in histories, biographies, etc.

The problem, however, is likely to be not the fiction/nonfiction issue. It's the books they will approve in both categories. No dead white males need apply.

14 posted on 12/07/2012 10:50:48 AM PST by Sherman Logan
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To: grundle

“Government is a parasite — a cancer that by nature tries to spread deeper into society. Those who want to run others’ lives won’t give up and start minding their own business.” -Harry Browne

“Schools have not necessarily much to do with education... they are mainly institutions of control, where basic habits must be inculcated in the young. Education is quite different and has little place in school.” -Winston Churchill

“Education should aim at destroying free will so that after pupils are thus schooled they will be incapable throughout the rest of their lives of thinking or acting otherwise than as their school masters would have wished ... “ —Johann Gotlieb fitche


15 posted on 12/07/2012 10:53:59 AM PST by Ruy Dias de Bivar (The parasites now outnumber the producers.)
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To: ROLF of the HILL COUNTRY

Was forced to read Catcher in high school.

Loathed it. I just thought the narrator was an utterly immature jerk.

But then I watched “The Breakfast Club” recently on Netflix and sympathized more with the mean vice-principal than with the snarky brat-pack. LOL

One of the most popular liberal bumper stickers is “Question Authority.” What they never seem to recognize is that this implies sometimes there is an answer. Sometimes the authority is right.


16 posted on 12/07/2012 10:54:40 AM PST by Sherman Logan
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To: Olog-hai

It has nothing to do with the status of the characters, or anything like that. It’s that “Rye” was always an anti-classic, so to speak. Adults don’t get it, man. It can only be “relevant” to one generation at a time. What did it mean to be a catcher in the rye, do you remember? Holden Caulfield wanted to save kids from losing their whateverness in the grownup world. Something like that can’t become a dusty, old library book that your grandparents enjoyed.

Classics are supposed to be perennially relevant. That “Catcher” doesn’t feel right being forced on subsequent generations is a good indication it was never destined to be a classic. It will remain primarily a baby boomer thing, I expect. No matter, there are more good entries in the bildungsroman genre than you could ever read in one lifetime, probably.


17 posted on 12/07/2012 10:56:48 AM PST by Tublecane
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To: grundle

I am not crying over the removal of Catcher in the Rye (which I thought was pretentious tripe when I read as a teenager back in the day when dinosaurs roamed the Earth), but Recommended Levels of Insulation and the Invasive Plant Inventory as replacements?

Geeze, Louise. I think the objective must be to raise a generation of kids that hate reading. I cannot imagine anything less motivating than assigning bureacrateze to schoolkids.

*Another* reason to homeschool.


18 posted on 12/07/2012 10:59:32 AM PST by No Truce With Kings (Ten years on FreeRepublic and counting.)
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To: grundle
Catcher in the Rye and Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird will be replaced

If only.

19 posted on 12/07/2012 11:01:08 AM PST by Romulus
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To: grundle

A real shame. I would recommend books like 1984, Animal Farm, Manchild in the Promised Land (contains vulgar language). For my 13 year old, some books mentioned should be on his reading list for next Summer. He is definitely is being brought up NOT to be politically correct.


20 posted on 12/07/2012 11:02:37 AM PST by CORedneck
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To: No Truce With Kings

Guess I get to look forward to grandchildren who are as dumb as a bag of hammers.

By the time they hit school age (I still have teens) the curriculum will consist of looking at pictures and pressing buttons.


21 posted on 12/07/2012 11:02:44 AM PST by EQAndyBuzz (George W. Bush is the Emmanuel Goldstein of the modern era.)
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To: wideawake
"Rye" IMO was an overrated book, predictable, but just what the leftist establishment pushed as "art" and "great literature" back then....

think of all the things that pushed the "okay" button back in the radical leftist 60's and this was one of them...sexual experimentation, and exploration etc is ALL GOOD....

we started losing whatever social norms right about then....along with Playboy and the pill.

so when people complain about legalizing weed and legalizing homosexual "marriage"....well it had its beginnings back then.

22 posted on 12/07/2012 11:02:50 AM PST by cherry
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To: Boogieman

Reading Shakespeare probably forces you to think no matter what. But the way they teach it nowadays, usually it’s to find what’s “relevant,” as entertainment, or as “look at what those foolish people thought back then.” Hardly ever is it in the most instructive way, which is to study it as actually worthwhile on its own merits. That presents interesting questions and answers and a way of thinking and expressing itself that’s not only different but superior to what you bump into in regular life.

If they think crappy, dry textbooks written by committee will help people write more concisely and factually, they are morons. They don’t think that. It’s just that they don’t value what’s said in most great literature. If they could write like Shakespeare and drill into your head what they think you need yo know, they would. But it’s easier to crank out industrial education manuals than write something people want to read, so that’s what they do.

It probably would be impossible to express their ideas in Shakespearean form, given the paucity of higher culture or homespun wisdom in their brains. But even if they could, they wouldn’t, because they don’t value it.


23 posted on 12/07/2012 11:09:32 AM PST by Tublecane
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To: Sherman Logan

You’re right that it’s not a fiction versus nonfiction thing. Literature, after all, is only one subject. I don’t know about the percentages, but the rest require a different sort of learning. The problem is the paucity of higher culture that will get into students’ heads no matter the subject.

If we wanted to go another way, for instance turn high schools into trade schools, I could see that. But then I’d wanna channel those destined for college into a seperate course. As it is we’re not going to give low- or middlebrow kids marketable skills, and we’ll churn out doctors, lawyers, and scientists who can’t think. Which is to say nothing of all the loafabout English or philosophy majors who can’t be trusted to know anything about English or philosophy, even.


24 posted on 12/07/2012 11:17:13 AM PST by Tublecane
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To: grundle

Other than the propaganda, I don’t see a problem here. I got through school without having to read “Catcher in the Rye.” Thank goodness.

For some reason, English lit classes select only the most excruciatingly boring books as “literature.” Why not let the kids read Sherlock Holmes stories, “The Scottish Chiefs,” “Kidnapped,” “Beau Geste,” or even “Tarzan?” They’re good books, well written, and reasonably entertaining. The kids might actually learn to LIKE reading; something they won’t get from Catcher in the Rye or Earth-First propaganda.


25 posted on 12/07/2012 11:21:58 AM PST by Little Ray (Get back to work. Your urban masters need their EBTs refilled.)
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To: Mrs. Don-o

“Catcher in the Rye” was always a liberal propaganda book:

Why Academics Love “Catcher in the Rye”
8/1/2010

The American left requires adolescents read J.D. Salinger’s Catcher in the Rye because they want young Americans to become false prophets of doom. They are sowing the seeds for the next generation of Paul Ehrlich’s and Al Gore’s.

http://www.humanevents.com/2010/08/01/why-academics-love-catcher-in-the-rye/


26 posted on 12/07/2012 11:22:11 AM PST by donna (Pray for revival.)
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To: Sherman Logan
But then I watched “The Breakfast Club” recently on Netflix and sympathized more with the mean vice-principal than with the snarky brat-pack. LOL

"He's the only guy in the whole movie wearing a suit. "

27 posted on 12/07/2012 11:22:32 AM PST by Oztrich Boy (By doubting we come to inquiry, and through inquiry we perceive truth. -; Peter Abelard)
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To: EQAndyBuzz

Then they will go home to watch “Ow My Balls”.


28 posted on 12/07/2012 11:23:59 AM PST by Perdogg (Rep. Tom McClintock (R-CA4) for President 2016)
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To: grundle
what Cartman thought of catcher in the rye
29 posted on 12/07/2012 11:24:10 AM PST by from occupied ga (Your government is your most dangerous enemy)
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To: grundle

Never cared for “Catcher in the Rye” - I found it incredibly boring. I do love “To kill a Mockingbird” - in fact I read it again last week! It’s a delightful story about growing up in rural Alabama during the depression. The only downside is that the story was interrupted by some sort of trial. (The trial part was boring, so I skipped over it).


30 posted on 12/07/2012 11:26:14 AM PST by Cowboy Bob (Greed + Envy = Liberalism)
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To: wideawake

Thanks to Core Curriculum and people like Bill Ayers and Linda Darling-Hammond - they will be mumbling to themselves about the Revolution

http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2012/12/obamacore-the-substitution-of-propaganda-for-great-literatiure-in-our-schools.php


31 posted on 12/07/2012 11:27:59 AM PST by Scotswife
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To: grundle

I think this is a tongue-in-cheek article. A brief look at the Common Core State Standards Initiative home page (http://www.corestandards.org/) doesn’t bear out any of the way-out elements from the article. The Telegraph was having a little fun.


32 posted on 12/07/2012 11:29:38 AM PST by Adolf Verloc
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To: No Truce With Kings

“the objective must be to raise a generation of kids that hate reading”

Bingo. Nailed it in one shot.


33 posted on 12/07/2012 11:39:48 AM PST by JCBreckenridge (Texas is a state of mind. - John Steinbeck :))
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To: Little Ray

I’m a history teacher. Let me get my hands on the requirements for non-fiction and I’ll make a list of interesting things that had significant impact on the world.


34 posted on 12/07/2012 11:41:40 AM PST by JCBreckenridge (Texas is a state of mind. - John Steinbeck :))
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To: grundle
Catcher in the Rye dropped from US school curriculum [replaced with environmental propaganda]

Replacing mid-20th century fiction with early 21st-century fiction

35 posted on 12/07/2012 11:44:01 AM PST by kidd
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To: grundle
I taught literature at a Catholic high school for 20 years. I found fictional literature a most excellent vehicle for young adults to discuss, analyze, and assimilate moral values. In fact, no work of non-fiction literature can take its place. I used the Introduction to Great Books, mostly comprised of non-fiction essays, also to delve into moral questions. They are equally important, but there is no replacing imaginative works.

Every so often on FR there comes the Catcher in the Rye thread, like clockwork. Because I taught it for many years, with excellent results, I can say that I know it very well, but I realize few have had the benefit of decoding it as I have. Like The Great Gatsby, which is an absolutely dazzling conglomeration of symbolism, putting it among our greatest novels, Catcher shares an intricate use of powerful symbols, but not with the complexity that Fitzgerald created. But Salinger's work is a loving, tender exploration of a search for God in a hostile, hypocritical world. He shows that the perversion of a worldly frigid materialism is combated and ultimately conquered by other-centered love, which comes from God. The bullets in the gut, the hunter's hat, the ducks, the pond, the merry-go-round, the museum, Phoebe, Christmas profanation, the nuns, the Rockettes, Sunny the prostitute, Maurice the pimp, Jane, etal all are assembled with great symbolic skill by Salinger, product of Catholic and Jewish parents, to convey that theme of God's love and human love and heaven as our destiny (quest) as antidote. And it's a hell of a funny book, it really is.
36 posted on 12/07/2012 11:50:55 AM PST by jobim (.)
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To: Tublecane
As it is we’re not going to give low- or middlebrow kids marketable skills, and we’ll churn out doctors, lawyers, and scientists who can’t think.

True, that.

37 posted on 12/07/2012 11:54:13 AM PST by Sherman Logan
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To: jobim

Thank you for an excellent review. Maybe I’ll try reading it again one of these days. I think I was too young the first time around.


38 posted on 12/07/2012 11:54:59 AM PST by trisham (Zen is not easy. It takes effort to attain nothingness. And then what do you have? Bupkis.)
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To: jobim
I taught literature at a Catholic high school for 20 years. I found fictional literature a most excellent vehicle for young adults to discuss, analyze, and assimilate moral values. In fact, no work of non-fiction literature can take its place.

Plutarch, Josephus, Plato, Gibbon and Churchill can't be used to discuss and analyze moral values?

Beg to differ.

39 posted on 12/07/2012 11:59:14 AM PST by Sherman Logan
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To: grundle

This is part of Obama’s ‘Common Core’ curricula that in intended to dumb down our schoolchildren while advocating all the socialist rubbish you can imagine and undermining traditional Judeo-Christian values. Do not allow your state to accept this for the federal money. It is another form of brainwashing. Better yet, home school.


40 posted on 12/07/2012 12:02:06 PM PST by Jim Scott
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To: Vigilanteman
Got sent to the principal's office in 1971 for writing a parody on this trashy novel which I titled "Shortstop in the Wheat."

If you still have it, you should post it here!

41 posted on 12/07/2012 12:02:23 PM PST by Disambiguator (America chose...poorly.)
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To: Sherman Logan
I used the Introduction to Great Books, mostly comprised of non-fiction essays, also to delve into moral questions. They are equally important,

I guess you missed that statement. I indeed used Plutarch, Plato, Gibbon, and Churchill regularly, in both history and English classes. My point is that they are two distinct categories, and both are crucial, and neither can be dispensed with.
42 posted on 12/07/2012 12:19:37 PM PST by jobim (.)
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To: JCBreckenridge

Now THAT would be good news.
Personally, I’d assign “The Red Air Fighter” - the autobiography of Manfred Freiherr von Richthofen or something similar... AND entertaining.


43 posted on 12/07/2012 12:23:21 PM PST by Little Ray (Get back to work. Your urban masters need their EBTs refilled.)
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To: Little Ray

In eleventh grade Catholic school we read “Of Human Bondage”, “The Power and The Glory”, “1984”, “Brave New World”, and “Morte D’Arthur”.

Hmmm...three of those selections were cautionary tales of the individual caught in the midst of totalitarian dictatorship.

Not the same message in the schools of today.


44 posted on 12/07/2012 12:25:33 PM PST by elcid1970 ("The Second Amendment is more important than Islam.")
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To: Sherman Logan
But then I watched “The Breakfast Club” recently on Netflix and sympathized more with the mean vice-principal than with the snarky brat-pack. LOL

When I saw that movie as a teenager, in the 80s, I didn't sympathize with those spoiled brats one bit. I couldn't believe the silly stuff they were whining about. The moral of that whole movie was "Even if you have a decent life, blame everything bad on your parents". Except that all of their parents in the movie were far better than what I had, so I just laughed at the characters as being a bunch of sheltered, spoiled little snivelers. I imagine watching it now would be even worse.
45 posted on 12/07/2012 12:26:22 PM PST by fr_freak
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To: jobim

I don’t know about “Rye” as a search for God. Wasn’t Salinger a Buddhist, if anything? That has very little connection to the search for God, or one that a Catholic would find enlightening, except that it is “spiritual.” I don’t find it nihilistic like some.

Salinger’s favorite tactic, or among them, is to suggest a truth beyond expression, and to present silence as the greatest expression of wisdom, or something like that. Which makes for bad literature in my opinion. It is trying desperately hard to be more profound than you’re actually capabilities. Which is a problem of symbolism, and why I choke on it. Because not always but often they want it to do the work for them.

“Gatsby” and “Lord of the Flies,” for instance, are much better. There the symbolism is simple and incorporated into the story itself, instead of a decoder ring that gives you extra special knowledge a cursory reading can’t. Which doesn’t mean a book should only mean what you can catch the first go around. But it should be in there, somewhere. Not like “Catcher,” which must be saved from banality by knowledge which passeth show.


46 posted on 12/07/2012 12:33:27 PM PST by Tublecane
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To: Tublecane; jobim

Personally, I think most “symbolism” in literature is made-up garbage to torture students and make a book seem deeper than it really is. For instance, a lot of people try to find “symbolism” in Dickens and miss the fact that he was getting paid by the word...

I am just glad I missed Catcher in the Rye, Moby Dick, and Gatsby. Give me Heinlein, PC Wren, and John Buchan, any day.


47 posted on 12/07/2012 12:42:38 PM PST by Little Ray (Get back to work. Your urban masters need their EBTs refilled.)
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To: grundle

People, this article is tongue-in-cheek. Can’t you see that?


48 posted on 12/07/2012 12:46:29 PM PST by Adolf Verloc
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To: elcid1970

An excellent reading list - you were well-served by that school.


49 posted on 12/07/2012 12:57:07 PM PST by jobim (.)
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To: Disambiguator

Sorry. Too many moves and too much stuff accumulated and thrown away since then.


50 posted on 12/07/2012 1:00:38 PM PST by Vigilanteman (Obama: Fake black man. Fake Messiah. Fake American. How many fakes can you fit in one Zer0?)
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