Rowling and elitists
rohina at shaw.ca
Wed Oct 29 19:41:02 EST 2003
Melissa kindly offered (and we so appreciate it):
>I thought I'd share some of this individual's pronouncements on the subject
>of what is good. He is getting very frustrated because he thinks no one
>understands what he's saying; he fails to realize that we don't AGREE with
>what he's saying. Gotta love those insecure academics. (I really have no
>idea what he does for a living. For all I know he is an engineer with
>delusions of grandeur.)
Clearly this is what he is, and as I predicted, his writing is full of
>"To begin with, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire is a book that could
>easily be 300 pages shorter. Though it can hardly be called dense, or
Okay, so this second sentence here is a fragment, because it is a
subordinate clause with no main clause.
>There's a lot of air in them there pages, which is maybe why
>they're so easy to turn. If the reader is a car, then Rowling has
>written an interstate.
Ignoring the "them there"; the second sentence here has faulty parallelism.
"If a reader is a car, then Rowling's book is an interstate" would be
stylistically more correct.
>"That I don't hold against her (though she leans over and grabs hold of
>the wheel too many times).
Comma missing after "That".
>What bothers me about Harry Potter IV is,
>well, like I said, too many words that throw slop and play into what
>should be a tight story line; too many adverbs and participle phrases
>and parentheticals that don't belong in even pedestrian prose.
Well, Mr Prof gave a good example of that in the previous sentence.
>very heavy load of homework." There are two unnecessary words in that
>phrase, maybe three. And: "very slowly and very carefully." How much
>slower than slowly is "very slowly"? And can you do something very
>slowly and "not carefully"?
In the second example, Rowling is using a rhetorical device called
parallelism, which your writer has, above, demonstrated that he doesn't
I don't disagree in principle that Rowling uses a lot of adjectives. It
defines her style. It is one of the things that makes her readable for
children. She doesn't use a lot of metaphorical description (ie the road is
a snake); instead, she relies on loading up adjectives to give a
descriptive picture (the road was long, windy and twisty). For the majority
of her young readers, who may not understand figurative languageu, this is
actually a good stylistic choice, not a mistake.
Typical of an arrogant guy with a limited amount of expertise to pick on
the obvious "mistake", and not interrogate the purpose behind it.
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