Tutor profile: Sarah O.
Why is writing well such a hard skill to master?
Having taught literature and writing for over 14 years, I've found that many students are challenged by writing because they assume that composing an essay is merely a process of transcribing their ideas to paper. In reality, though, writing is itself a form of thinking. Getting our ideas on paper requires that we clarify and hone our thoughts. This process often demands drafting, messy revision, and deep critical thinking. I enjoy helping students through the work of perfecting their voice in academic writing.
What’s the most important American novel?
For me, it’s Beloved by Toni Morrison. Morrison’s novel explores difficult eras in American history, including slavery and the post-Civil War Reconstruction periods. The stream-of-consciousness form of the novel helps readers see trauma and grief as both historical occurrences and personal experiences.
How do stories shape our culture?
Stories – whether told through films, plays, novels, short TV ads, or long-form articles – define how we interpret and perceive the world around us. Learning to think carefully about how stories mobilize specific genres and engage with world-historical events can make us better thinkers and more empathetic citizens of the world.
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