November 2013 Blog Posts

Crafting a “New” English in “Things Fall Apart”

Ojiako Ezenne with his family, c. 1913
There is that great proverb—that until the lions have their own historians, the history of the hunt will always glorify the hunter.—Chinua AchebeA CCSS Exemplar text for grades 9–10 (Appendix B), Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart deals with the clash of cultures and the violent transitions brought about by British colonialism in Nigeria at the end of the 19th century.Read More »
Categories Closer Readings

150th Anniversary of the Gettysburg Address: “A Few Well Chosen Remarks”

Lincoln delivering the Gettysburg Address
When Abraham Lincoln was invited in the fall of 1863 to speak at the dedication of a national cemetery on the site of a pivotal Union victory at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, it was not to give the main speech. That oration was delivered by Edward Everett, a Massachusetts statesman, vice-presidential candidate of the Constitutional Union Party in 1860, and the most famous orator of his day. Everett spoke to the crowd of 15,000 without notes for over two hours, giving an example of the kind of ornate, learned, and transcendentalist rhetoric that was expected at such ceremonies.Read More »
Categories Closer Readings