Better a Witty Fool than a Foolish Wit

Inner Workings of My Twisted Mind.

English Class

I’m sitting here, in my apartment, watching My So-Called Life for thefifty-millionth time and it dawns on me.  On T.V. shows, we rarely seeanything other than English class as an interesting and fun class.  Ican’t think of one T.V. show where characters are in class (be it HighSchool, College, Junior High, etc.) and enjoying it where the class isnot English.There is, of course, a very logical explanation for this.  Writerswrite television and writers loved at least one of their Englishclasses.  And yes, there is always room for parallels between a bookand the theme of a certain episode of a t.v. show.  It says a lotabout characters when they have a favorite book or when they arediscussing literature that correlates to their particular situation,but let’s think about this a little more.  Basically, according totelevision, the only class that anyone can ever have fun in isEnglish.  Now, I don’t know about you, but I had some bad Englishteachers in High School, I had some great ones too, especially inCollege and yes, I did major in Literature (UCSC’s equivalent tomajoring in English), but I remember for much of my youngereducational career English class was a complete nightmare.  Forced toread books I had no interest in…a few pop into mind.  And, though Ilove to do this now, when we were learning how to pick apart texts andget deeper meaning, I wanted to shoot myself.  I distinctly rememberbitching to my mom that we were having to pick apart a text so muchthat it lost all entertainment value.  ‘Why can’t I just read it andenjoy it?’  I would plead to rather amused ears.  It wasn’t untillater, after learning how to pick apart writing, that I was able toenjoy it and pick it apart at the same time.Now, I always side with the characters on T.V. who have a greatEnglish class.  I know how great it feels to have amazing discussionsabout Chapter 3 of Bleak House by Dickens (thank you John Jordan).  Iknow how great it feels to argue about Brett and Jake and theirrelationship in The Sun Also Rises.  But for you that aren’t soEnglish-ly inclined (like that new word…Shakespeare invented words,so do I), I wonder how it feels to constantly have English beingportrayed as the best class when you’re not an English person.  Whatof those that are more mathematically inclined or biologicallyinclined?  I mean sure there’s usually the token, dissecting frogsbiology scene, but do you science people feel left out?  Do the mathpeople feel like Calculus doesn’t get its due?  I personally canrelate to the English scenes but is it Chemistry discrimination?Peace, Love, and Literature,Julia


March 12, 2008 - Posted by | Books, High School, Literature, My So-Called Life, Television

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