Posted onApril 4, 2014
Oystercatcher – bathing in morning sun
– trying to get teenagers interested in literature …
me presenting books
Trying to get them to want to read books (instead of going online :)), and encouraging them to reflect upon what they have read. A very interesting and challenging task.
students talking about funny books
These 17-years-old are part of a national jury called Ungdommens kritikerpris (young critics award), a jury which will decide which was the best Norwegian adult fiction book in 2013.
I have visited the class three times this winter, talking about criticism; how to read in a critical way, and how to discuss fiction, and how to give grounds for evaluations.
On my last day in the class we were visited by the newspaper. All images are from Stavanger Aftenblad
Here is David Brooks; adding valuable arguments to our ongoing study of art & beauty:
We really have to trust our emotions, which are much smarter than our reason in some ways – because our emotions tell us what to value.
– we don’t have the choice to control our emotions, but we do have the power to educate our emotions. And we do that through literature and through art and music to give ourselves a repertoire of emotional experiences.
Some years ago I read Sara Maitland’s book A Book of Silence. It’s a beautiful book based on Maitland’s own experiences of living alone in the Scottish highland. Now she is out with a new book, in a way it’s a continuation of the first, but How to Be Alone is also an attempt to better distinguish between the two concepts of silence and solitude. “I am writing this book because I would like to allay people’s fears and then help them actively enjoy time spent in solitude.”
The first chapter is called “Sad, Mad and Bad”, it asks:
How have we arrived … at a cultural moment which values autonomy, personal freedom, fulfillment and human rights, and above all individualism, more highly than they have ever been valued before in human history, but at the same time these autonomous, free, self-fulfilling individuals are terrified of being alone with themselves?
Why is our culture so afraid of solitude? Are people preferring to live alone a threat to society? Must they be sad, mad and/or bad to choose an alternative way of living? (You all know my longing for Antarctica, so obviously I feel it’s my own sanity which is under scrutiny here).