Spring SAVY 2018, Day 3- Truth vs. Perception (5th/6th)
Today, we brought up fictional tales, specifically with relation to moral of the story, purpose, narration, and point of view. To conclude our conversation from last week on American values, we read “A Modest Proposal” by Johnathan Swift, an essay which proposes a satirical solution of an abundance of hungry, poor children: have the poor sell their babies to the rich to eat, making cannibalism the solution overpopulation and hunger. The resulting conversation was uproarious, and students then created their own artistic rendition of a “modest” proposal to cure a social ill in the U.S.
The conversation continued into a discussion of the Hero’s Journey. We watched an episode of Netflix series called “Myths & Monsters,” which defined the steps of the timeless heroes’ journey. The documentary uses Joseph Campbell’s framework in “The Hero with a Thousand Faces” (a book which unites myths from throughout time and space to draw a common narrative thread). We looked at how myths teach us things about ourselves, but also acknowledged that myths have evolved and adapted over time. As people rewrite myths, they do so with a specific purpose that distorts the original story. We ended the class on another creative project where the students are writing their own hero’s journey epic in pairs which we will continue working on and debriefing next week.
Overall, we looked at the themes that truths are learned, and sometimes unexamined when passed down. However, storytellers’ perceptions and distortions of history make their way into our canon and are adopted blindly as fact. We will continue this conversation of the necessity of examination in the weeks to come.