Some Things Just Really Make Me Angry

:: 1 Works Cited
Length: 1196 words (3.4 double-spaced pages)
Rating: Excellent
Open Document
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Text Preview

More ↓

Continue reading...

Open Document

Some Things Just Really Make Me Angry


I was reading Chapter 2, "It's all in the sign!", of Danesi's Messages and Meanings when I ran into a passage that, to put it politely, just really made me angry. Angry because my interpretation of this passage brought back a lot of memories of events that I have had to deal with in my educational "career". There were two sentences, in particular, that really ticked me off. The first was:

If a drawing instrument is put in the child's hand, that child will almost instinctively use it to draw--a "skill" that no one has imparted or transmitted to the child.

The second was:

The child must be exposed to language in order for him or her to acquire it; that same child does not, however, need to be exposed to visual art in order for him or her to draw.

These two seemingly innocent statements (that can be found on page 27 and which I have taken out of context) undermine everything that I hold dear. There is a huge assumption in the first sentence that drawing, as a "skill", is innately obtained, especially when "no one has imparted or transmitted to the child".
Your naturally talented! Your daughter has so much talent! I wish I had your talent! Your so creative! Well, creative people are like that. I wish I could be as creative as you are! You're the artist of the group/class/school/etc...! Think of something creative/original/new!

As I see it, these comments are not compliments of my ability to create visual images but at my "gift", my "talent". Hard work, practice, trial and error, learning the rules, processes, techniques or simple tricks..none of these are examined. The artistic process, to many, remains this mystical and quite godly transformation of something out of nothing and those with this gift of transformation are artistic. What it tells me as a teacher of the arts is this, that I am wasting my time trying to teach everyone, for there are only a talented few (please read the last sentence sarcastically).

There is another point of contention that I have with the first statement. What I have taken out of context is the comparison that Danesi makes between language acquisition and drawing skill development. O.K. Danesi states that a child picks up a crayon (drawing instrument) and uses it to scribble naturally and spontaneously, without anyone imparting this knowledge to the child.

How to Cite this Page

MLA Citation:
"Some Things Just Really Make Me Angry." 123HelpMe.com. 23 Jun 2017
    <http://www.123HelpMe.com/view.asp?id=32427>.
Title Length Color Rating  
Essay about Prejudice in 12 Angry Men - 12 Angry Men is about 12 men who are the jury for an 18 year old accused of murder. The judge states in the opening scene that it is a premeditated murder in the 1st degree, if found guilty will automatically receive the death penalty. The 18 year old male is accused of killing his father with a “one of a kind” switch blade, in their home. The prosecutors have several eye witness testimonies, and all of the evidence that they could need to convict the 18 year old male. In the movie it takes place on the hottest day of the year in New York City....   [tags: 12 Angry Men Essays]
:: 1 Works Cited
1000 words
(2.9 pages)
Good Essays [preview]
Chinua Achebe's Things Fall Apart Essay - Chinua Achebe’s “Things fall apart” is a story about a man named Okonkwo who is successful and physically strong. However, Okonkwo is emotionally unavailable and afraid that he will be seen as weak and that others will compare him to his father. The book’s peak is when Okonkwo does something considered immoral by killing a boy who he had taken in and raised as his own for three years, because he did not want to be seen as weak. Okonkwo is ruled by one obsession and that is to hate everything that his father had loved....   [tags: Things Fall Apart Essays]
:: 3 Works Cited
1844 words
(5.3 pages)
Term Papers [preview]
Communication in 12 Angry Men Essay - ... He also counted the votes and kept record of how many and who voted guilty or not guilty. The two Jury members whose informal role falls under information giver would be Juror 3 and Juror 4. They both offer their ideas and beliefs to the other gentlemen. Juror 3, the business owner of a messenger company, is positive the boy is guilty and should get the death penalty. He states his opinion about the boy over and over on how “he should pay for his crime.” Juror three states his ideas firmly that the boy is guilty....   [tags: team, jurors, innocent] 1114 words
(3.2 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
Christianity vs. Animism in Achebe's Things Fall Apart Essay - Christianity vs. Animism in Achebe's Things Fall Apart A major aspect of one’s society is religion. Without it, the way people hold themselves accountable would be nonexistent. In addition, many moral standards that exist today are values taken directly from religions such as Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Currently, there exists a feud between people who believe in a god, and of those who do not. Eventually those who believe in a higher power will fight against each other. In “Things Fall Apart”, Chinua Achebe brings to light the differences and similarities of Christianity and Animism in order to demonstrate the effects of religion upon one’s society, which is exemplified by Okonkwo an...   [tags: Achebe Things Fall Apart] 1860 words
(5.3 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
Analysis of Sinner's in the Hands of an Angry God Essay - To take the first jab at answering this inquiry, it would be fair to assume one would ask this question in rhetorical context, being that the answer is blatantly obvious. Though to prove my conjecture, it will be necessary to first prove logical validations in this Question. We will also apply the analysis of the reference to a sermon titled “sinners in the hand's of an angry god” which was given by a preacher named Johnathan Edwards in 1741, it was a well written argument, first providing a danger or infinite despair in “Hell”, then supplying the ultimate trump card of happiness in the form of “Heaven,” but ultimately it was highly successful in attracting people to the puritan religion....   [tags: religion, beliefs, hell, heaven]
:: 9 Works Cited
1148 words
(3.3 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Demonstrations of Leadership in Twelve Angry Men Essay - ... A vote is soon called for, and it is stated that if everyone else votes guilty, that Juror Eight will do the same. However, Juror Nine changes his vote to not guilty, after being impressed by Eight’s courage in standing up for what he stated. This is, by far, the most important alliance in the entire movie. By this point in the movie, the negotiation strategies of each juror begin to show, and as their motivations are revealed, make great food for thought. Juror Three, Seven, and Ten all act as if they are certain, beyond doubt, that the boy is guilty from the beginning, and they are extremely quick to anger....   [tags: negotiation, juror, motivation]
:: 1 Works Cited
571 words
(1.6 pages)
Good Essays [preview]
Some of the Causes for Divorce Essay - ... One of the emotions that the person feels is anger. A person would certainly get angry after finding out about the affair because it is considered as a violation of the vows that they took when they first got married and as damage to the marriage and relationship (Meyer, n.d.). Another emotion felt by the spouse is denial and rejection. A person feels that he or she is no longer wanted and are rejected when they discover that another replaced them (Meyer, n.d.). These emotions are normal to feel when discovering about the infidelity and are often the causes of a divorce....   [tags: broken marriages] 764 words
(2.2 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
Angry and Ignorant: Ode on a Distant Prospect of Eton College Essay - ... Likewise, Braymer uses aggressive diction in Five Day Requiem for Vietnam to express the anger that the fighting soldiers felt. He uses the phrase “master pulls the strings”(Braymer 25) to describe how the soldiers felt when being ordered by the generals. Although the soldiers did not want to kill innocent people, the generals ordered them to. Because of their lack of control over their actions, the soldiers become angry, saying, “let the betrayed not go unavenged . . .”(33). They believe that the men who died were killed during unnecessary fighting, which is why they were “betrayed” by the ones who sent them....   [tags: Thomas Gray poem]
:: 2 Works Cited
683 words
(2 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
Some Of The Effects That Peer-Pressure Have On Teens Essay - ... True clinical depression is a mood disorder in which feelings of sadness, loss of anger, also frustration interfere with every day life for weeks or longer. This will affect teens in high school or middle school very hard because they might not want to attend school or it might case education problems or even hard to make friends or keep a social life with their peers. It also decrease in desire to do things that use really like to not caring about your appearance also you hold stuff back from your parents and running away form home....   [tags: social anxiety, peer influence] 1192 words
(3.4 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
The Cause and Effect in Rapunzel the Grimm´s Fairy Tales Essay examples - ... He wandered the forest until he came upon Rapunzel and his twins. Rapunzel’s tears cleared up the King’s son’s eyes, and they lived happily ever after in the kingdom. In the end, they lived happily ever after because, the wife craved the herbs, the King’s son found Rapunzel, and the enchantress discovered the King’s son. The first event that started the chain of reactions in Rapunzel, by Grimms’ Fairy Tales, was the wife’s desire. The wife craved the herbs every day, and was thought to die without them....   [tags: desire, love, angry, entantress] 828 words
(2.4 pages)
Better Essays [preview]

Related Searches




I am not even touching on the argument that the child has absolutely no control (psycho-motor) over this process until he or she learns it, may not be reflecting on their activity, using the tool (crayon) in an effective manner, or that "skill" is not an operative term in this example. But I am going to question how this use of a tool (the crayon) is any different than a baby's gurgle, which is also experimenting with tool (voice) usage in the same manner. I wonder how that point would be argued by Danesi?

The second sentence, that students do not need to be exposed to visual art in order to draw is one of the most ridiculous statements that I have heard in a long time. I believe that visual art is extremely beneficial (but not necessary) when you are teaching students about the history of art, aesthetics, or art criticism. But, and this is a huge but, artist do not paint, draw, create, or sculpt from visual art but from the visual world . And when, may I ask, is there a time (unless one does not have sight) that we are not connected to the visual world.

The bottom line implicit in both of Danesi's statements is that drawing ability/art is not learned but acquired in some mysterious natural manner that cannot be taught. This idea is not new to education, in fact many can find the origins in this "type" of thinking originating in the creative self-expression movement within art education that lasted from the mid 1940's till the 1960's. Victor Lowenfeld, who initiated this movement, declared that any intervention by an adult in the child's creative process (this experimenting that Danesi talks about) is unnecessary and in fact detrimental to the development of artistic abilities. Elliot Eisner (one of my favorites) has attacked this position adamantly saying (and I am paraphrasing) that artistic ability does not evolve naturally but is acquired by means of instruction. Here are two examples may highlight this position.

When I teach the art methods classes to soon-to-be student teachers I get a group of individuals with various levels of artistic abilities and differing experiences. It is usually during the first art-making assignment that they start to get vocal about their own drawing ability. They praise those students who are doing well, ask me to do their project for them, or degrade their own work. When we are finished and looking at all of the projects I ask them to talk about their work and tell what grade they were in when they stopped taking art classes. Inevitably those that had more years of instruction in the arts (regardless of the quality of that instruction) were the people who were receiving high praise.

Often, I would ask my husband to make the classroom examples for my elementary art class because the students seemed to become less discouraged with his examples than with mine. Of course, my husband was a little reluctant to participate in these activities at first. I explained to him, just as I have to elementary and college students, that if you only have math until the second grade would you expect yourself to know calculus?

I have been thinking about instruction in the arts a lot (no thanks to the project I am doing this semester in IST). There appears to me to be this heirachy in semiotics that is biased towards language. I do not want to argue that point because I can "see" the arguments for language. However, I do not feel that the development of artistic abilities has been seen through its own lens. It seems to me that the development of artistic abilities is always seen through the lens of language acquisition. That semioticians see the development of knowledge in sign systems as the same process across those very systems. How come I constantly see examples where the development of artistic ability (especially children's drawings) and language aquisition is compared (even Vygotsky -as it pains me to point this out-has done this). It makes me angry. To illustrate my point I would like to rewrite Danesi's statements to read something like this:


If a musical instrument is put in the child's hand, that child will almost instinctively use it to make music--a "skill" that no one has imparted or transmitted to the child.

And this:

The child must be exposed to language in order for him or her to acquire it; that same child does not, however, need to be exposed to sound in order for him or her to make music.
Does this make anybody angry?


Reference:
Danesi, M. (1993). Messages and Meanings: An Introduction to Semiotics. Toronto, Ontario: Canadian Scholars' Press.



Return to 123HelpMe.com