Challenging Perspectives


“Miss, miss…why do we have to study literature? What makes it literature, anyway?”

“Well, its writing that we have decided holds enough layers, meaning, subtlety and complexity that it is elevated to a higher designation: literature.”

“You mean like Push?”

“Well…do you think Push falls into all those categories? For example, tell me about the layers in Push.”

“The layer I liked was when Precious started to write poetry; when she could hardly read or write at the beginning.”

“Yeah…and how about the way she figured out how to get her breakfast, but left her book behind? And the other girl saw it?”

“And meaning?”

“Her teacher knew that writing in her journal would help her in alot of ways.”

“Ok…did you find Push subtle or complex?”

“Sure…the way Precious had to figure out how to talk to the principal, and the social worker, not giving anything away…and how she thought it was better to pee her pants than walk in front of her classmates and get dissed.”

“Well, do you think Push should be called literature?”

“Yeah, sure, why not? It had alot of different language in it, and alot happened to her; she showed courage, and we all wanted her to succeed by the end. I would call it literature. Hood literature.”

“Well, then, let’s put Push on our list of Personal Literature Favorites.”

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