Lecture Halls at Kom el Dikka via Flickr, by isawynu

Remember our discussions of direct and indirect language? Direct language is easy; we can easily understand what the speaker/writer wants us to know. Indirect language, however, is more challenging. We need to use logic to infer the real intent.

Think about the following quotation from Michelle Obama’s speech:

And he believes that women are more than capable of making our own choices about our bodies and our health care…that’s what my husband stands for.

The literal meaning is incredibly broad. Still, I can infer that the First Lady is referring to abortion; my logic is based on two observations:

  • Michelle Obama is pro-choice
  • Many pro-choice supporters use phrases like ”making choices with our bodies” when they describe their stance

Inference is not limited to language. Let’s examine a few album covers, and use logic to infer what we can about the music and the musicians:

Inference, however, can be tricky. Our logic may be faulty, or our observations may be inaccurate. Let’s look at this video together. Half-way through the video, I will ask you to make inferences about what you have seen.

Period 4/5

Today, we will begin with a mini-lecture about the Other.

  • We will discuss strategies for lectures.
  • We will consider the role the Other plays in literature and life.
  • Finally, we will discuss your experiences during the lecture.

Once you have an understanding of the Other, your group will use this lecture to examine  the Blue Man in detail. I’d like you to track moments from the novel that define him as the Other. In your notes, add a snippet of text, the page number, and a sentence or two of commentary for each point. In the commentary, make a clear connection between the text and the theory of the Other.

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