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English Literature has got to be the most bullshit class I have ever taken. For an entire year I was forced to make stupid, over analytical interpretations of Of Mice and Men. I enjoyed the book, but I really started to dislike it after I made so many different interpretations that the book almost ceased to make sense. One of the activities that we commonly practised was picking one word and making a mind map around it. I'm not kidding. One word. And the thing is, I'm not very good at pulling shit out of my ass so I would write down what I think the purpose of the word is and why Steinbeck decided to use it. This would often take two branches in my mind map, and is seen by the teacher as inadequate effort, and I get sanctioned for it. Then this girl puts her shit filled hand up to share an interpretation. She said something along the lines of: "The fact that Lennie crushed his mouse in his hand can be compared to the way that he crushed Curley's hand, however the contrast in his feelings towards his victims shows his confusion and emphasises his mental issues. And that's apparently a good interpretation.
So why am I mad about this shitty class? Because I got a C in it, and that was fine until just now, when I found out that I need at least a B to study Philosophy in the College that I wanted to go to, probably the only course I was looking forward to taking. It's 2AM and I'm really demotivated now. My GCSE's are coming up and now that I know I won't be able to take Philosophy in my desired College depresses the fuck out of me.
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I think the whole 'death of the author' concept is only applicable on the initial perception of a work.
The first read of a book, or even a viewing of a painting or listening to a piece of music, etc., you should not focus on the creator, but decide if it gives you sensation.
After this initial consumption, during a reread or re-listen etc., you should have in mind the creator.
Does anyone have thoughts on this?
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Any Buddhists here actually take Mahayana sutras seriously as the word of the Buddha?
Brief history lesson: the Mahayana movement and its texts appeared centuries after the Buddha died and the canon of original discourses had already been completed and sealed. Later, Mahayana monks came from South India with tons of new texts, claiming the Buddha taught them but they were preserved with mythical beings, since the teachings were too profound for humans at the time. However, 600 years later everyone and their grandmother can understand these "profound" Mahayana texts.
I think, and most serious scholars would agree, that this is claptrap, and that the Buddha's original teaching - whether you like it or not - is preserved in Pali.
So, why do you still bother with Mahayana, /lit/?