Tuesday, January 24, 2006

"Dad blame it, why doan' he talk like a man?"

It's the bleak midwinter. You know what that means.

Today we started The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and, yes, I've already had complaints. One in particular that I would like to address is their difficulty with understanding what Jim is saying. Keep in mind that these are the same kids who won't read Shakespeare because, "It's written in Old English," according to them (that's a whole 'nother blog).

You can't understand what Jim is saying? Are you kidding me? Snoop makes millions on "fa-sizzle," from these kids no less, and they're not willing to adapt? Perhaps if Jim was a pimp in the novel they might make more of an effort. Nevertheless, one thing Snoop has done is alleviate the tension of derogative language being found in the book. The movement calling the novel a racist book has certainly diminished. If you think about it--"Nizzle Jim" is kind of cute.

Still, there is a real and pertinent problem here. As an educator, I feel it is my duty to get them beyond the barriers and roadblocks of understanding, so that they are uninhibited for the messages of injustice, friendship, and understanding that Twain is attempting to relay. Fo-shizzie.

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