Your RDA of Irony

Modern Education

Someone asked me if are we less educated than the people of 60 years ago. I would say that we have raised the lowest common denominator of education. There is a higher rate of literacy than in the past. However, there also seems to be a lower standard for the well-rounded education. Today’s students can be very sophisticated and yet appallingly myopic.

Two years ago I participated as a writing tutor in an educational program at the local high school. I would assist the students in attaining some semblance to coherence and logic in their essays. Talking with these teenagers and reading their writings, I observed a skewed direction in their education. In their interpretations of The Scarlet Letter, they could discuss the psychological aberrations and even the sexual deviations in the characters; however, they really had no idea when the story took place. When I asked them, some guessed the 19th century.

Did the English teachers feel that a little historical context would overload the adolescent mind?

  1. Rene says:

    Obviously they were focusing on their area of interest.

  2. SwanShadow says:

    What’s even more depressing is that most of those students who thought The Scarlet Letter was set in the 19th century probably also believed that the 19th century began in the year 1900.

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