The Body Stephen King and Introspection
What does “introspective” mean? • Author’s choices add meaning and purpose to their writing. A writer and (film) presenter’s selection of relevant topics and details strengthen the overall message. • Introspection is, “the actorprocess of looking into oneself.” (Dictionary.com) • This basically means that an author’s choices reveal who he or she is and can connect his or her perspectives on life to like-minded individuals.
Why do we use an introspective lens ? • Looking at literature and film using an introspective lens helps us to define our own feelings and thoughts about a topic and to identify diverse perspectives regarding that topic. • Ex: How do you think one could define“grit”? • Ex: What is the driving force that defines a woman’s social position in today’s society? • How do you think Charles Portis or Jane Austen would have answered these questions? • If we used an introspective lens to analyze their works instead of a historical one, this would help us find the answers…
Stephen King • Stephen King is the highest-earning author in the world. He earns 2 million dollars per month from book sales and film returns. • He was born in 1947 in Portland, Maine (the place where The Body is set). • He came from a single-parent home after his father abandoned the family in 1950. • As a child, King has been reported to have always been chosen last in team games. • He began writing creative stories in high school and graduated in 1970.
Stephen King Cont. • From 1971-73, King taught at a secondary school in Hampden, Maine. • He wrote for enjoyment through college, becoming a father, and into his career as a teacher. • In 1973, King sold his first novel, Carrie which was later turned into a famous horror film. • King was freed from teaching when the rights to the paperback book sold for $400,000.
Themes • Small-town life as an arena for good vs. evil. • Psychic powers and/or the supernatural • The mystery of forests in New England • The journey out of innocence • America’s loss of innocence (the 1960s).
Opening Activity • Read Chapter 1 – it’s only a paragraph. Then answer the following question on a half-sheet of paper. • The opening sequence of the book is: ‘The most important things are the hardest things to say.’ Is this the same for children and for adults? • Why or why not? • Considering the fact that you are more adult than child at this stage, is this true for you?
Ongoing activity • Track phrases and words that we do not use anymore, but that King adds into the story as regional, generational, or age-specific. • The boys talk like 11-12 year old boys do. They use plenty of profanity and euphemisms for people, places and things, rather than calling them by their actual names. • Keep track of what you read and use context clues to tell me what these terms actually mean. • I will collect this when we finish the short story. You MAY include these in your reader response logs.
Reading Schedule • Chapters 1-3 due Wed 10/3 • Chapters 4-6 and 8-9 due Fri 10/5 • Chapters 10-15 due Mon 10/8 • Chapters 16-21 due Tues 10/9 • Chapters 22-27 due Wed 10/10 • Chapters 28-33 due Friday 10/12