Friday, January 14, 2005


Busy days yesterday and today. Yesterday I taught my first Hermeneutics course. It was basically introducing what we'll be discussing all term. We concluded by offering a little non-biblical criticusm to the old story by Hans Christian Andersen -- The Ugly Duckling. Genre Analysis - Fairy tale... complete with fantasy (talking ducks) and a moral point (about judging others). Narrative analysis... Setting changes from a beautiful day in a wood to a cold, brutal winter, then to spring when hope comes alive... Characters are developed - all the ducks are bad (even the mother)... Plot - developed as we feel more and more sympathy for the duckling. An abrupt twist is when the ugly duckling, ready to surrender to death because of his ugliness, sees himself in the water and realizes his beauty. Feminist Theology - Of course, the hero is a drake, and the implication is that, if the ugly duckling were a female, there would be no hope. So the story serves to reinforce stereotypes. Black Theology - Punished because he doesn't look like the majority, the duckling only finds true peace when he is among his own, beautiful kind. Liberation Theology - One option for the newly discovered swan might be an uprising against all of duckdom!

This exercise simply served to help them see that we won't be doing rocket science, but trying to use clever but faithful approaches to interpreting the Bible.

Yesterday was also good because I got a part time job (6-10 hours per week) assisting Dr. John Hull in his research and duties. This will be especially good for me because Dr. Hull is completely blind and I'm sure he will teach me much. With the money I make from teaching and helping Dr. Hull, we'll almost break even over here. Praise the Lord!

Now, I'm off to lunch with Mark Goodacre, my supervisor, and then to Wolverhampton for a B&W Television...


At 6:50 AM, Blogger Mommy of Boys said...

Hey Michael,

It's been interesting to read of your adventures! Keep writing. I'm so glad that Mary, her mom and Sweet Helen got there safely. Can't wait to hear about Mary's adventures too.

Love --
Karen Caples Carpenter

At 8:21 AM, Blogger Barclay said...

All I wanted to do is post a comment, and they made me sign my life away to a new blog page. I'll survive this time.

I just wanted to say that I enjoyed the travel narrative. It's more interesting than the last one that I read: William Bartram's from a few centuries ago. Sonya says hello to Mary. Langston says ohdadee to Helen.


Post a Comment

<< Home