This week we went deeper under the surface of literature in order to better interpret the books that we read during the summer. For me, it was: The Reluctant Fundamentalist by Mohsin Hamid, The Fall by Albert Camus, and How to Read Literature Like a Professor by Thomas C. Foster.
Before we did any of the visual metaphor things. We learned that literature can be interpreted in many different ways by different kinds people. For example, Mr. Schoenborn talked about how he read The Reluctant Fundamentalist and he found that the main character Changez, and the "love interest" Erica, had deeper meanings hidden within their names that one could infer. He showed us how the names; Changez and Erica could be linked into the main idea and story of the book by just changing and adding letters into them. Changez can be seen as: "Changes" as to reflect the different changes that Changez had to struggle with throughout the book, and Erica can be looked at as "America" as to reflect how America was the main focus of the book and how different events affected it throughout the book. Before that class I was barely aware of those clues. It opened up my eyes to different interpretations that I could have seen in the book if I had tried to look and paid closer attention to the book.
This then leads to the visual metaphor activity that we had to do in groups of 2 or 3. We had to pick a chapter in the How to Read Literature Like a Professor book that really resonated with our group, a quote from said chapter, and then we needed to link the books that we read into the chapter that we picked by the use of a visual metaphor and not just explaining the connection by words. After we finished our visual metaphors, we had to do a sort of gallery walk around the room to check out and hear the explanations that different groups had for their visual metaphors. As the activity went on it helped me realize how important visual metaphors are. It gives the reader a different way of sharing their interpretation on a type of literature a different way. This also helps with conveying your ideas to people that learn better and understand better by visual cues.
At the end of the week we got to look at the past essays that were submitted to the Collegeboard, and we got to compare these with the ones that we attempted to write about The Eagle on the Friday of the week prior. I gotta say, it was pretty eye-opening. I was shocked at how much detail needed to be in each essay and sometimes it's "quality over quantity," but sometimes it feels like it could also be "quantity over quality," I guess it just depends on how well you structure your own essay. This gave me a slap on the face that I needed to work harder on my essay writing skills if I ever want to have a high score on the AP test that I have to take by next year. Of course essay writing is not only present in AP tests so just in general I have to work on it.