1) Write a one-page (250 words) summary for chapters (16-17) of Foster’s text.2) Be sure to include the following items in your summary: a. Major details/key points from the chapter b. Key terms from the chapter3) Use MLA formatting style, see the purdue guide for MLA formatting rules: http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/747/01/SOURCE:How to Read Literature Like a Professor by Thomas Foster, ISBN-10: 0062301675Attached, are some examples of other students’ foster summaries.
1) Write a one-page (250 words) summary for chapters (16-17) of Foster’s text.2) Be sure to include the following items in your summary: a. Major details/key points from the chapter
Examples of Excellent Foster Summaries Example #1 Foster Chapter Fifteen Summary In Thomas Foster’s How to Read Literature Like a Professor , chapter fifteen explains the value of the idea of flight in literature. Foster begins by explaining that flight can be synonymous with freedom. He explains how everything that has the potential to fly and defy gravity displays a certain aura of carefree and miraculous freedom. Humans, one of the few species that cannot defy this freedom in a literal manner, have the power to do so through different stories and novels. Flights are described to either be a direct or halted action; characters that “fly” are sometimes interrupted mi d – flight, which the reader then interprets to have a significant underlying meaning. Failure, death, immoral behaviors all lie within this realm. Foster uses multiple examples to reinforce the idea that flight and falling can be based on other ’ s actions, such as “falling” from a parents’ divorce. To accumulate all of Foster’s into one, he identifies that flight is a form of rebirth, a means to defy the odds and survive the obstacles that falling places on the human world. Example #2 Chapter 15: Flights of Fancy Flying has always been one of human’s biggest fantasies since it is an ability not attainable by humans. It is an ability so desirable that it was even a temptation of Christ. Therefore, anything that flies without the aid of technology cannot be hu man. Flight is used in literature literally, figuratively, and metaphorically. Most commonly it is symbolic for greatly desired things of mankind, such as freedom, love, and escape. Many times, flight implies something spiritual, as in the soul being set free even though the body stays earthbound. However, flight doesn’t always end as one would hope, like in the case of Icarus whose ability to fly using wings leads to his downfall, and generally, if it is interrupted and ends prematurely, it signifies some thing negative. Falling from great heights and surviving the fall is as symbolic as flight itself and can serve as turning points in characters’ lives. Flight, therefore, is heavily symbolic and can be used to generate deep and meaningful ironies, allowing readers to take flight in terms of imagination and interpretation of the text. Example #3: This summary gives more than the requirements, earning a bonus point, 6/5. Chapter 15 – “Flights of Fancy” In the world of science, flight and humans do not mix , unless one is in a plane or suspended by a rope. In the life of a novel, flight has a different purpose. Foster connects the long held fascination with human beings in flight with the concept of freedom and escapism. A human body in flight is impossib le, unless attached to a novel. Flight has been desired by the human imagination. Greek Mythology captured this desire when young Daedalus tried to give himself those same natural characteristics of a bird, so he could be airborne. Foster states that in literature, “It’s really pretty straightforward: Flight is freedom.” This simplistic theme is apparent in a film like E.T. or Chitty Chitty Bang Bang . However in literature flight and flying are attached to more subtle and ironic themes. In Angela Cart er’s, Night at the Circus ( 1984), a character named Fevvers, which is a combination of feathers and tethers, is held in a cage which separates her from society, literally and figuratively. If we as readers had not already embraced the cultural meaning of flight and freedom, we might miss Carter’s attempt at irony, “Fevver’s flying represents a kind of counter freedom.” Foster then leads the reader into a discussion involving winged characters. When a human body sports wings, get ready for some connectio n to angels. In the literary work, A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings , the character is ironically portrayed as something very different than how we perceive the classical angel who is pure, white and playing a harp. This literary character is caged, dir ty and smelly. Foster enlightens the reader with an interesting perception about the Messiah. Jesus did not have the qualities that earthly people would attach to a king and so they fall short of recognizing Christ’s full glory on earth. So also the you ng couple, Pelayo and Elisenda, miss the fullness of the miracle attached to the old man. The author the n acknowledges an idea in literature that is the opposite of flying, “As thrilled as we are by the prospect of flying, we are also frightened at the pro spect of falling…” When characters survive a fall, an author attaches deep meaning to this, such as Gibreel and Saladin, two characters in a Rushdie novel. Surviving a fall can mean a rebirth, a beginning or transformation. Rushdie’s characters live to see another day through some miraculous landing and then go on to a high – quality life. Finally, Foster continues the discussion about the human spirit or soul ascending and gaining freedom. In literature, the human soul, rises and goes to heaven. Foster describes the soul state as, “The notion that the disembodied soul is capable of flight is deeply embedded in the Christian tradition, and I suspect in many others as well, although it is not universal.” There is limited literature that speaks of humans l iterally flying, but there is flight imagery throughout literature. This imagery is done effectively through the use of birds, wings and feathers. This chapter was insightful, providing readers a connection to many literary images of flight, but adding to them freedom and escapism and the ability for us to soar beyond our imaginations.
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