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Please  respond two of your classmates’ initial posts and bring together pieces of the discussion and take those ideas further.  These responses should be at least 150 words FOR EACH STUDENT.

Student 1

Stephen Summerall

I enjoyed reading the stories this week and thought it was nice to change pace from the poems. Picking one story this week was a tough one but I decided to pick “Good Country People.” To be fair, I had a hard time realizing what was going on in the story so after I read it, I kept researching to help me gain a better understanding. I want to point out that one of the characters, Joy had a difficult relationship with her mother. Her name “Joy” certainly does not reflect her attitude. I am unsure if this was the author’s sense of humor because she was not very “joyful.” There is tension between her and her mother on multiple occasions.

One of the amazing things of reading pieces of work is knowing where the author was when he/she wrote the story. I like to submerge myself in the writer’s thoughts and mind and really understand where the writer was coming from. The author’s story is more than just the words written but the surrounding world can help shape the story written. With that being said, I decided to research Flannery O’Connor. She was born in southern American in 1925 and deceased in 1964. As a southern writer born in Georgia, she was exposed to many of the country’s racist times against African Americans. The word “Negro” was wildly accepted back then and could explain her writings talking about African Americans. Again, it is important to know how the writer interacts with the surrounding world and how it impacts their work.

This story really lives it up to the reader to come up with their own conclusion. Sometimes when I read a book, I like the book to actually “end” and come to a conclusion. However, since this book did not provide that to me, I was given the opportunity to come up with my own conclusion. I had to think some time to devote to this as the story was not fully completed. I find this story in particular interesting because of my background in the military. As many of you know, the military provides a different outlook on humor than some of the regulator population. In the end of the story, we are given clues that build on the fact that he walked away from his post.  

Student 2

Christopher Reyes

               For this week’s reading, I chose “Good Country People.” I found the character relationship between Joy and her mother quite interesting. The relationship between these two in rather unhealthy, as Joy hates her mother. I find it interesting that Joy feels ugly, and actually changes her name to the most ugly she can think, Hulga. Her name is as ugly as her personality, as we see that she is absolutely horrible to her mother. In the end, we see that karma gets the best of Joy. I found this interesting because there are many who have horrible relationships with their parents. A single event can trigger even the worst relationship to rebuild itself and heal. I wonder if Joy ever ended up needing her mother after such an event.

I chose to write about Tim O’Brian and how his readings are related to his past experiences in Vietnam. I chose O’Brian because he speaks of his memoirs of Vietnam in his most memorable book, “The things they carried” and they are raw. Vietnam was a time that many Americans did not want to agree with! We saw as these men came home and were severely mistreated when they arrived. The fact that this man was able to speak of his experiences, and actually put his thoughts into a book are outstanding. He speaks of the horrors he has seen, from his point of view.

“You will. You got a terrific sense of humor.” This line represents the mentality of a Soldier. In times of War, we as Soldiers are tasked with a mission and accomplishing it. During our mission, we are forced to see things that certainly stay with us for life. Laughter is certainly our medicine and the scenario we are presented with, in my opinion is Billy acknowledging his loss and letting his friends know that everything will be ok.

Prof. Angela

4.6/5

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