[Milton-L] Help with a pedagogical question

gilliaca at jmu.edu gilliaca at jmu.edu
Thu Oct 1 11:21:59 EDT 2009

.>     .  But in your
>     concluding paragraph, when you say that in John
>     "we read of Christ that. . ." you not only reveal
>     your faith position, but include your reader in
>     that community.  What if the person reading your
>     discussion of the poem does not identify as a
>     Christian?  Is that person excluded from the
>     paper's audience?  Does the argument's success
>     require that readers share this faith position?
In the past, I've approached this issue as a matter of courtesy and inclusion of a general audience. 

If the author of the text under analysis uses the term "Christ," then that would be OK in a paraphrase or analysis.

I discouraged use of first person singular or plural - the royal 'we' is a bit much for college students!

It's even more interesting in a class on the Bible as literature, especially as I am not only a Christian, but an Episcopal priest, and my former employer is a public university.

I'll be curious to see what others say.
Cynthia A. Gilliatt
English Department, JMU, ret.
JMU Safe Zones supporter
"You have made God in your own image when God hates the same people you hate." Fr. John Weston

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