Monday, October 13, 2008

Thoughts on the class so far...

Looking back at our curriculum thus far, I can't believe that we've only read from THREE authors! I feel like there has been much more information passed around than having to do with just a handful of literary works!

I have to agree with a few of the posts I've just read and say that I really enjoy the course. Aside from the content, I find the classroom atmosphere relaxed and friendly....exactly what I'm looking for when I am asked to give my thoughts in Spanish! I have also enjoyed reading about Chicanos and their experiences, be them recent or from a century ago. The authors that we have read allow us to relate to their stories. I am not an immigrant (although I don't REALLY know what being a 'Canadian''s kind of the old 'mixing pot'-mosaic analogy for me), but after reading these stories I understood a few of the tribulations and triumphs that belong to these chicanos.

It was also a breath of fresh air to watch 'The Salt of the Earth'. I'm sure that we all inwardly groaned when we saw the black and white and heard the crappy sound quality of the DVD, but the movie turned out to be better than expected. I found that it connected very well with the racial and gender issues also found in Who Would Have Thought It?; however, this heroin decided to do something drastic and dramatic about her situation. Perhaps this shows how the times have changed even between the book's publication and the movie's release.

I've already read the book (Cisneros) for our Wikipedia project and I hope that everyone will enjoy it as much as I did. I thought that it was better than any one of our first three readings!


Jacqui said...

I seems like we've read a heck of a lot more than three books...maybe because within 2 of them there were a bunch of different short stories...nevertheless, we have covered a lot of information, and I too have found it all quite interesting.

I just wanted to give a little disclaimer though about the next book (before reading it again) I don't know whether I read it too fast or was too tired when I read it...maybe a combination of the two, but I found it hard to follow because again, it is full of short stories...many of which have confusing plots and unnamed narrators. However, I am hoping to enjoy it more the second time around...especially since it is my Wikipedia project topic!! :)..haha glad you loved it though Katie!! :)

Beth said...

Agreed, Katie. I feel like we've heard from so many more Chicanos than the 3 authors we've read... perhaps because of the collective nature of the texts and the various voices some of the authors (particuarly Rivera) have employed to express themselves.

I also loved the movie. You should definitely see "And the Earth Did Not Swallow Him" if you liked "Salt of the Earth."

I'm also finding that each new text we read I enjoy more and more. I haven't read Cisneros yet, but I am almost finished reading Julia Alvarez (for my own wikiproject) and I love it so much. Alvarez hs such a beautifully honest, and pure style. She's so real. This is a book I would read on my own, outside of a class at UBC. I think you'll love her. I'm glad to hear you liked Cisneros.

Leanna said...

It is amazing the number of issues and topics that arise in a class discussion from just three texts. I think one reason is because our class is so diverse, bring many different backgrounds and realms of experience to the table.
I too have read my wiki article novel, 'How the García Girls Lost Their Accents', and like you, really enjoyed it, I think we have an excellent end to the semester coming!

alannaj said...

hey, i defs thought i would have some trouble trying to remember everything that we've read so far, until i remembered that it's only been three authors!! so i obvs agree that the class is going by quickly. i also thought it was kind of funny that you mentioned that you aren't an immigrant and don't know what it means to be canadian - i'm not an immigrant either and am currently taking a US politics class with lots of US students and have come to the conclusion that i don't know what it means to be canadian either.

Kaan said...

Hello Katie,

Very nice summary! I totally agree when it comes to the class atmosphere, I think that it's hard for a lot of us to get our thoughts out in front of the class, but most of us feel comfortable doing so most of the time. I know that I face expressive issues all the time, wanting to say things but not really able to form the words of from my thoughts. I feel that in our class we all just kind of let it out, and everyone just goes with it! Whether it makes sense or not...

I want to comment on "Salt and Air" because I most certainly had those thoughts going into the movie. I thought "Great, Jon picked the old one, this is going to be a snooze" but I actually loved it! It's so refreshing to watch good old movies. Yes, although different in time and context, I definitely saw links between that and "Who Would Have Thought It" I think in different ways the characters faced the same issues.

Great observations!


deanna-maria said...

Hey, I agree with you (and it seems everyone else as well), it really does seem like we have covered many topics so far in this course, even though we have just scratched the exterior of Chicano literature.

I wouldn't say that the three works we read were boring or not good, but I am, however, very excited to read the next few. I already finished Alvarez and Rodriguez, and I'm working on Cisernos. I found them much easier to work on, not only because of the language but also because often times it is easier to understand because of the contemporary setting. The movie I really enjoyed too! You should watch the movie "El Norte" was made in the 80s, but it is a great one if you can find it.