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Domestic Violence Grimm style

14 Oct

Grimm’s stories reflect a sense of benevolence and perseverance in each of their characters, but there’s much more to their stories than the outer coat, the "Disneyfication" of some of them takes away the true essence and meaning, also the idea of the stories being only for children, when in fact the compilation of the stories told in "Household tales" is a gift to the world where grown-ups and children alike can enjoy from their direct and hidden messages.

The Hare’s Bride is a story that reflects a form of domestic violence and cultural distortion of what it is to be wedded. Once in the marriage the hare shows his true intentions ["Now," said he, "set to work and cook some bran and cabbage; I am going to bid the wedding guests."] not caring for his bride’s sadness.

The story is short in length but deep in code, it hides a reality in which many couples are in. Obviously the maiden didn’t imagine marriage being so difficult to take in, take for example a fixed marriage where the parents give their 13 year old daughter to an older male, what can she expect from that? The fairy tales her mother used to put her to bed are not like the life she’s about to enter.
"Typical of most domestic violence cases, the abuser isolated her from her family and friends, effectively imprisoning her in his home." (Funnell, 2010) much like the rabbit in the story.

Forms of domestic violence like the one the brothers Grimm reflect in this story are also shown in Lean Lisa and The Frog Prince, in the first we have a couple that argues about what to do with a cow "She was reaching for his hair, but Lanky Lenz raised himself up, took hold of both her skinny arms with one hand, then pushed her head into the pillow with the other one. He held her there and let her scold until she fell asleep from exhaustion.".

The frog prince also makes a reference to violence; subtle in a way, when the frog asks in return to be the princes’ companion, she has to oblige because her father tells her to, she has a fit and throws her companion against the wall revealing his true self, in this case he was abused by her by not returning what he asked for.

Although in the stories the characters manage to get out of their predicament in a creative way, they can’t escape a moment from the violence before they can be freed from their troubles. The maiden fooled the hare with a straw doll before he could slap her silly for not having the food on time for the guests. Lisa calmed down and woke up another day, would she make the same mistake? And the prince stayed with the princess even though she had shunned him before.

The brothers Grimm offer us a wide range of tales that give us a glimpse of society in Germany before it was a country, how each story has a lesson to learn and ideas to give, they will not fade away because of the practicality of which they present everyday situations, where we can imagine being Rapunzel, or a lucky man trading his possessions along the road, in which the situations turn out fantastically in favor or sadly in con.

An Essay on The career Of Language Teaching

4 Jun

The Language Teaching Profession

(Standing in front of them is not a “piece of cake”)

Most people can look back at their own school days and identify teachers they thought were good. But generally they find it quite hard to say why certain teachers struck them as special. Perhaps it was because of their personality. Probably it was because they had interesting things to say. Maybe the reason was that they looked as if they loved their job, or perhaps their interests in their students’ progress was compelling. Sometimes, it seems, it was just because the teacher was a fascinating person! (Harmer, 2007, p.23)

Jeremy Harmer writes about language teachers in his book How to Teach English and gives us his personal thought about what and why teachers should care about their profession, the beginning quote of my essay is very clear about the students perception of a teacher, he mentions personality, speech, sentimental, professional and interest aspects that reflect the students perception. It is very important that a “good” teacher maintains the proper interest in class so that the students don’t loose focus from the topic.

Good is just an adjective when mentioning a quality in a teacher, in fact, good is relative, as Harmer mentions in his book, there are many different elements that make a teacher a “good teacher”, “[…] a lot will depend, too, on how students view individual teachers and here again, not all students will share the same opinions.” (Harmer, 2007, p.23). Personally, I think that a teacher that has great performance is a teacher that takes in account each and everyone of the students way of thinking and interests, the teacher will create an environment that includes the students idea of a cool classroom. This might leave the teacher with the role of the provider only, but the fact that the students feel that their learning environment is in essence what they want it to be is a plus for the teacher and for his or her class. Also, a good teacher will think in advanced the classes that will be taught, considering each and every aspect that makes a class functional, that way the class by itself will flow naturally; when I started to teach I remember taking very lightly certain aspects, that now that I’ve advanced in this career know of them being important, like planning and relying solely on a book, my classes became dull and not interesting enough for the class, I had two groups and one of those groups was integrated by young adults, my boss only let me finish one semester with them and was not invited to the next one. It served me as experience because of my lack of professionalism, either way it was my first job as a teacher, not that is an excuse but its a factor to consider. We can not say that teachers are already good teachers when they begin their careers, the experiences along the path make the good teacher.

Making mistakes and learning from them help build character and makes teachers evolve, at the end of the road, even though some have a lifetime teaching, those experiences from which we learn never end. There are many points that make a teacher good at what he or she does, to my point of view they are resumed in: having a good personality, being able to adapt with any circumstance, listening to students, respecting students and adding variety to the classes.

I think at this point I have the necessary knowledge to teach, although I know that I always have to be up to date, reading about new methods and learning from my other colleagues, as a teacher it is very important to share your knowledge that’s primarily why I became a teacher, and the fact the other teachers share their experiences and knowledge helps to build up more elements to use in class. In this case using others methods is not copying or infringing in some copyright title but in continuing others legacies and using ideas to create a better learning environment.

In the future, hopefully I will be able to open a language school where I can create with other teacher a community where everyone is capable of helping the other, respecting teaching styles and enabling the students to choose their teachers according to what they have to offer, thus encouraging teachers to think about their students and not the payment. Because for me the student is first, if the students are happy, more will come looking for the good teacher, and if they find it, that community will grow, and more teachers will be needed to open other schools like the one I want to open, I can only imagine how that environment will be, having such good elements working together. This is how I see myself in a few years, maybe not two or three but I know that in time it will happen.

Teaching is not an easy job, but is a necessary one, and can be very rewarding when we see our students’ progress and know that we had helped them make it happen. It is true that some lessons and students can be difficult and stressful at times, but it is also worth remembering that at its best teaching can also be extremely enjoyable. (Harmer, 2007, p.23)

Reference

Harmer Jeremy, How to Teach English, 2007.

The Language Teaching Profession

(Standing in front of them is not a “piece of cake”)

Most people can look back at their own school days and identify teachers they thought were good. But generally they find it quite hard to say why certain teachers struck them as special. Perhaps it was because of their personality. Probably it was because they had interesting things to say. Maybe the reason was that they looked as if they loved their job, or perhaps their interests in their students’ progress was compelling. Sometimes, it seems, it was just because the teacher was a fascinating person! (Harmer, 2007, p.23)

Jeremy Harmer writes about language teachers in his book How to Teach English and gives us his personal thought about what and why teachers should care about their profession, the beginning quote of my essay is very clear about the students perception of a teacher, he mentions personality, speech, sentimental, professional and interest aspects that reflect the students perception. It is very important that a “good” teacher maintains the proper interest in class so that the students don’t loose focus from the topic.

Good is just an adjective when mentioning a quality in a teacher, in fact, good is relative, as Harmer mentions in his book, there are many different elements that make a teacher a “good teacher”, “[…] a lot will depend, too, on how students view individual teachers and here again, not all students will share the same opinions.” (Harmer, 2007, p.23). Personally, I think that a teacher that has great performance is a teacher that takes in account each and everyone of the students way of thinking and interests, the teacher will create an environment that includes the students idea of a cool classroom. This might leave the teacher with the role of the provider only, but the fact that the students feel that their learning environment is in essence what they want it to be is a plus for the teacher and for his or her class. Also, a good teacher will think in advanced the classes that will be taught, considering each and every aspect that makes a class functional, that way the class by itself will flow naturally; when I started to teach I remember taking very lightly certain aspects, that now that I’ve advanced in this career know of them being important, like planning and relying solely on a book, my classes became dull and not interesting enough for the class, I had two groups and one of those groups was integrated by young adults, my boss only let me finish one semester with them and was not invited to the next one. It served me as experience because of my lack of professionalism, either way it was my first job as a teacher, not that is an excuse but its a factor to consider. We can not say that teachers are already good teachers when they begin their careers, the experiences along the path make the good teacher.

Making mistakes and learning from them help build character and makes teachers evolve, at the end of the road, even though some have a lifetime teaching, those experiences from which we learn never end. There are many points that make a teacher good at what he or she does, to my point of view they are resumed in: having a good personality, being able to adapt with any circumstance, listening to students, respecting students and adding variety to the classes.

I think at this point I have the necessary knowledge to teach, although I know that I always have to be up to date, reading about new methods and learning from my other colleagues, as a teacher it is very important to share your knowledge that’s primarily why I became a teacher, and the fact the other teachers share their experiences and knowledge helps to build up more elements to use in class. In this case using others methods is not copying or infringing in some copyright title but in continuing others legacies and using ideas to create a better learning environment.

In the future, hopefully I will be able to open a language school where I can create with other teacher a community where everyone is capable of helping the other, respecting teaching styles and enabling the students to choose their teachers according to what they have to offer, thus encouraging teachers to think about their students and not the payment. Because for me the student is first, if the students are happy, more will come looking for the good teacher, and if they find it, that community will grow, and more teachers will be needed to open other schools like the one I want to open, I can only imagine how that environment will be, having such good elements working together. This is how I see myself in a few years, maybe not two or three but I know that in time it will happen.

Teaching is not an easy job, but is a necessary one, and can be very rewarding when we see our students’ progress and know that we had helped them make it happen. It is true that some lessons and students can be difficult and stressful at times, but it is also worth remembering that at its best teaching can also be extremely enjoyable. (Harmer, 2007, p.23)

Discourse analysis of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr’s “I Have a Dream” speech

1 Dec

The 1960’s are known for its revolutions and exploitations of human ideals; from the sexual revolution to freedom of expression and human rights movements the time marked a change. It was then when still after President Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation that the black population of America suffered with racism, it was in these years that hate crimes and false segregation laws rose and blacks where cornered.

Dr. Luther King Jr. thought differently and became the voice of the voiceless; his speech entitled “I Have a Dream” makes a subtle but firm statement, almost prophet like, about things to come. History in the making was at the time, Dr. King knew what the people wanted, he lived like them, and that made him empowered to speak about all the injustice going on, “I am happy to join with you today in what will go down in history as the greatest demonstration for freedom in the history of our nation.” (Luther King, 1963) Was his opening sentence, “the greatest demonstration for freedom in the history of our nation”, empowering, confirming and nailing the public’s attention and expectations about the day, it’s all about the masses and making revolution. Paul Gee in his book “An introduction to discourse analysis: theory and method” talks about building an identity, talking “right”, Dr. King was the right man to make this speech, his identity clearly was “right” for the moment.

Now, the environment in which it was taking course; Washington D.C., Lincoln Memorial, a huge mass of blacks crying out for freedom in the steps of the deliberator, it was mayhem waiting to burst. Dr. King, sober, no signs of anger in face, no fists held high, just him and the stage, the crowd silently started to hear his opening statement and went nuts in applause, why? “in the history of our nation” is the key detonator, they where a part of history as of now, the past didn’t matter anymore, it was the tomorrow that they longed for , the new tomorrow.

Making an identity was important so that Dr. King’s speech could get a good response from his audience; the speech uses the word “Negro” this tells us that he hasn’t forgotten about his audience’s feelings, their background, his language is surely made to give a breath of faith to those who didn’t have it at the time, remembering that still there where many battles to fight, that their struggles wouldn’t end at the very next day of this groundbreaking speech, and he remarks it:

“Nineteen sixty-three is not an end, but a beginning. And those who hope that the Negro needed to blow off steam and will now be content will have a rude awakening if the nation returns to business as usual. And there will be neither rest nor tranquility in America until the Negro is granted his citizenship rights. The whirlwinds of revolt will continue to shake the foundations of our nation until the bright day of justice emerges.” (Luther King, 1963)   

Yet after the “And there will be neither rest nor tranquility in America until the Negro is granted his citizenship rights” he cleverly manages to keep a positive message and not get mal-interpreted by saying a few lines after; “Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred.” (Luther King, 1963), Dr. King really had a vision; he would lead the thoughts of the people around him not by rioting against those who made wrong to them, but by stating that their unity would set them free.  Decades later there is still a fight, but there are people that share Dr. King’s dream and will keep fighting for freedom.

References

Luther King, D. M. (1963, August 28). “I Have a Dream”. Retrieved December 1, 2009, from American Rethoric: http://www.americanrhetoric.com/speeches/mlkihaveadream.htm