domingo, 24 de abril de 2011

World Book Day 2011

In Spain we celebrate the World Book Day on April 23rd (Ireland and the UK celebrate it on March 3rd). This date marks the aniversary of two well-known writers, Shakespeare and Cervantes (you agree with me on the statement that everybody has heard the names, don´t you? Garcilaso de la Vega also died on that date but he is not so popular...), and that was one of the reasons why UNESCO designated it as a worldwide celebration of books and reading.

People who like books (and I belong to this group) usually enjoy themselves immensely with anything related to them: going to libraries and  bookshops, handling the books there, sometimes using them for architectural purposes...

But what we really enjoy is the feeling of being one with the story, living other people´s lives, getting into other people´s minds and houses, you name it...

When you like books so much, the name "facebook" is somewhat misleading:

Politically correct language has definitely influenced the way people relate to books. Do you know what has been changed in these books and why?

Once you start changing the titles and parts of the story it is easy to end up banning books. This is a frequent issue in the US where they even have a Banned Books Week . Watch this video where we are shown the steps that are taken to ban a book in high school; in this case the book in question is 2007 National Book Award Winner, The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, a novel by Sherman Alexie.

Make sure you understand the following words and expressions before you watch the video:
  • high school curriculum
  • schoolboard
  • to bully / a bully
  • debate
  • a public hearing
  • concerned citizens
  • to support
  • excerpt
  • attorney

Finally, a funny video which proves just how easy it is to "use" a book compared to ...?

4 comentarios:

  1. Laura Rodríguez de la Sierra25 abril, 2011

    I didn’t know that in Ireland and UK celebrate the World Book Day on March 3rd. I think it’s a curious thing because Shakespeare was born in England.
    I like reading books (especially about mystery and crimes, I love Agatha Christie’s books) but I read more last year when I had more free time.
    It’s incredible what US people do to ban a book and the reason why they do it. I think they are a bit excessive.
    About the last video, I like it, it’s really funny.

  2. Laura, it is nice to know you still have time to drop by the blog and get your mind off your exams for a little while.

  3. Jessica López Santiso 1B

    It's a shame, since it seems that in Spain reading habit is falling into decline and many children are already born with the idea of we
    are taken books only to study them and getting a good mark for school, never associating it with something to do for fun. In my opinion, sometimes schools play also part in this, because I think that in some subjects in the last years -at least from my own experience- best and most attractive reading books haven't been chosen by teachers to being asked for in school's exams; books that promote young students' interest and even, if this isn't like that, you could take a dislike to reading when it's something you didn't like from the beginning and you had have to make mandatory.
    I love books, although I must admit I never devote enough time to them. I remember them mainly when I must do some work for class and actually I just end up rarely making time to them in my free time. But I've learned a lot from each book I read. Authors may help you see everything differently and they describe you places you'll be able to know without even leave your room.
    P.S.: In reference to previous comment, I agree, Agatha Christie is fantastic! If you like this kind of stories I recommend "Death on the Nile'', by the same author.

  4. We definitively need some books by Agatha Christie in the English department library!


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