Do I have the authority?




This weeks reading were, in my opinion, the most interesting so far (cant wait for next weeks readings on revision). similarly to Janet, I have been on the side of regurgitating information and accepting it as “law”. This belief began in high school, when the five paragraph essay[do all issues go back to it?] was ingrained into my brain. Being taught to gather information, analyze it, and not insert my own thoughts.

Later in my early undergrad journey, this concept was just furthered and refined. My Analysis improved but I did not do this with the intent to join into the conversation but to get a grade. Authority wasn’t a concern to me, that is until I wanted to join a certain conversation. It was during my short time in Montclair University, when I took a Victorian poetry course (no surprise). I actively engaged in the conversation of the Victorian era’s Religious Movements and the idea of Soul Sleep. Coming from a catholic-ish background and loving the works of Christina Rossetti, wanting to be an authoritative voice was an endeavor I thoroughly enjoyed.

A white background with magazine letter cut out spelling Use your voice. 
Created by Polina Kovaleva.

However great it is to reminisce on this completed work, remembering the steps it took to complete it was dreadful. I was never genuinely taught how to be authoritative with my voice. Similarly to Janet I was not aware that I could insert my voice into the conversation. “Students like Janet who see all text (except their own) as containing ‘the truth’ rather than as authored and subject to interpretation and criticism, will of course see the objective report as the only conceivable response”(Penrose/Geisler 515). Believing your voice can contribute to the conversation is a journey that one must embark on. It’ll also help if high school educators and professors make this idea clear. Students seeking out higher levels of education have voices, and ideas to contribute.


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