Wednesday, May 22, 2013

The Events of October response

Well, I should preface this with the fact that, overall, I enjoyed the book. I think the structuring of the narrative led to a great tension in reading, which, combined with prior knowledge of the focus, was highly effective in drawing me into the narrative itself. It seemed to plod along for the first hundred-or-so pages, which was making me anxious as I read. While a slow pace might not fit other types of narratives, I think it coupled with the subject matter well enough to make the read both engrossing and tortuous (which wasn't necessarily a bad thing).

However, I was slightly jarred by the language used by the author in the book. Most narratives are indicative of what a reader would imagine the author's true "voice" to be, and the use of almost "academic English" slightly put me off. While the structure of the overall narrative was wonderful to me, at times this overly flowery language didn't seem like it fit.

Just as an example, one of the passages describing Frelon read, "the dance itself is the genre that annoys me in every Frelon, an unimaginative reiteration of that brand of intense, sexually charged dancing that students imbibe from TV and think is edgy"(54).  Besides the redundant use of "dance," it is this sort of language, where the thought of ending with a preposition is a cardinal sin, that threw me off an otherwise smooth read.

I personally do not know Gail Griffin, having never taken a class with her or even run into her around campus. I cannot say that I know how she speaks, and that may truly be her "voice." That said, it begs the question: even if a more academic tone is your (or the author's) natural voice, is it still fitting to be placed with in a narrative? Should that be altered to provide a more smooth narrative?

These were but a couple of my own thoughts on the piece, and as much as I'd love to ramble on and on about it, I do believe I shall leave the rest for class discussion.

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