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Thursday, October 29

October 29, 2015

Violence: Took a quiz on “Dry September.” We discussed the restraint with which Faulkner depicted the violence in this story — nothing sensational here — and the ways in which this story is similar to “The Lottery” and “John Barleycorn.” There is a scapegoat in each work, who comes to a violent end. And in each case, there is at least the suggestion that the ritual which is enacted has something to do with the ancient crop-harvesting rituals that have been practiced ever since man learned agriculture. (This is disturbing, potentially, when applied to a modern context: remember the term for this is “displacement.”)

We said that there are generally four reasons man chooses a scapegoat:

1. So that crops will grow/so that there will be a good harvest
2. So that the sins of the community will be forgiven
3. To defend the community against an internal threat (from a member of the community, from disease, etc.)
4. To defend the community against an external threat (an attack from another community; natural disasters, etc.)

We will see these reasons in the stories and poems and films ahead, so keep them in mind.

For Tuesday: please read V.S. Pritchett’s story “The Scapegoat.” Reading quiz? Probably.

Radio: Today you handed in Project #3. Thank you, all, for doing what you needed to do.

We finally got to talk about the reading assignment from last week. You got a sheet with a summary of the important bits (Radio 10.29.15 – Notes on Writing for Broadcast). We then read an article from USA Today and marked up all of things that would need to change in order for it work on air (

Your assignment for Tuesday is to rewrite this article. Here’s the assignment sheet: Radio 10.29.15 – Article Rewrite Assignment. Also, your weekly listening, as usual.

Siren: Gave back AP Style quizzes. We unfortunately didn’t get the papers assembled in class, but I thank all the folks who helped later.

Remember: on Tuesday I want to know what newspaper you’re gonna be following this year. And your deadline for November copy is Nov. 10 (that’s about a week-and-a-half away). Two bylined stories minimum for veteran reporters!

Style: Today we talked about In Touch. Here’s the board:


Yours can be about celebrities, something from your own life, or a straight-up parody (a tabloid about fairy tale creatures or something). Pay attention to typography, layout, and use of imagery. I’d like to see everyone do at least 2 spreads (which is the same as 4 pages; a spread is what you see when the magazine is open). Looking forward to these!

Middle School:

Survey: Poetry: Learned about the 19-line form called the villanelle, and adapted your rondeaux into one. Because you got it done in class (I hope), no homework.

Survey: Fiction: Today you shared your talking points on The Yellow Wallpaper, and then we played(?) a review game(?). We did a thing. It involved answering a lot of questions, fast.

Here are all of the questions from the “game,” with answers: Fiction 10.28.15 – Midterm Review Questions WITH ANSWERS

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