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View Diary: Books Go Boom!   'My Last Duchess' by Robert Browning (77 comments)

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  •  Your students' reluctance to see straight is sad & (8+ / 0-)

    strange. But I say this mostly because I've seen it before when, for instance, a poll of teenage girls showed so many of them blaming Rihanna for Chris Brown beating her.

    I agree that the Duke half-suspects his own fault. He's protesting a bit too hard about his own blamelessness.

    "Maybe I was too stridently feminist then, so evoked this resistance...." interesting tangent. I've done this, and seen it, in other contexts. The audience feel that you want them to agree, and don't get why you care so, and recoil. Often, enlightenment comes like eating an elephant - one small bite at a time. Just as often, enlightenment never comes.

    Very happy to see you here. One of these years, you could write a diary of your own. Or Adalah could be resuscitated. In any case, you're most welcome.

    "Every man has a right to utter what he thinks truth" Samuel Johnson

    by Brecht on Fri Sep 13, 2013 at 07:34:15 PM PDT

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    •  Glad to be here. And lol--never heard (8+ / 0-)

      of the elephant eating analogy--sounds pretty gross though. Though, I am probably subjecting my students to similar experiences, given the sort of stuff I teach.

      And have to quote sections of my favorite Browning poem here, even though it is totally OT:

      I would that you were all to me,
               You that are just so much, no more.
      Nor yours nor mine, nor slave nor free!
               Where does the fault lie? What the core
      O' the wound, since wound must be?

      I would I could adopt your will,
               See with your eyes, and set my heart
      Beating by yours, and drink my fill
               At your soul's springs,—your part my part
      In life, for good and ill.

      No. I yearn upward, touch you close,
               Then stand away. I kiss your cheek,
      Catch your soul's warmth,—I pluck the rose
               And love it more than tongue can speak—
      Then the good minute goes.

      Already how am I so far
               Out of that minute? Must I go
      Still like the thistle-ball, no bar,
               Onward, whenever light winds blow,
      Fixed by no friendly star?

      Just when I seemed about to learn!
               Where is the thread now? Off again!
      The old trick! Only I discern—
               Infinite passion, and the pain
      Of finite hearts that yearn.

      "Two in the Campagna"

      http://www.poetryfoundation.org/...

      It's *Gandhi*, not Ghandi

      by poco on Fri Sep 13, 2013 at 08:06:26 PM PDT

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      •  How do you eat an elephant? (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        RiveroftheWest, poco, Emmet

        One bite at a time.

        So, when a problem overwhelms you, break it into subtasks, and do the one in front of your face. Who knows, maybe some parts of the elephant are delicious? The fear of eating the elephant tastes worse than actually eating it.

        How is it under our control
        To love or not to love?
        Thanks for the poem. He paints a scene so well.

        "Every man has a right to utter what he thinks truth" Samuel Johnson

        by Brecht on Fri Sep 13, 2013 at 11:54:53 PM PDT

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