Monday, December 22, 2014

Jaipur Literature Festival – Part 3 - Franzen (Writing) and Steinam (Activism)

Jonathan Franzen Notes

He spoke about his journey as a writer and his thoughts on the modern literature. He mentioned how earlier before the rise of novels, people had to travel or go to different places to understand them. But now you could learn about life in a prison or in Australia, by reading a novel about it. He described how his upbringing had a role in the development of the characters of his book.

A festival like no other indeed
He spoke about his favorite novel, ‘The Man Who Loved Children’ by Christina Stead and how this book had three fully developed characters, while most books have just one developed character.

He also spoke about the books he liked to read and why it was important to keep the page clean, avoid clichés and not waste the reader’s time. All this was information directly from one of the best contemporary novelists of our time. It was like I was in a classroom and he was individually speaking to me.

Gloria Steinam Notes

I then attended a session by Gloria Steinem, a writer, journalist, feminist and key figure of the women’s liberation movement of the 1960’s.  She described how there was no subject in the world of which women were not a part. I saw lots of parallels with the women’s liberation movement and the learning revolution movement I write about in this blog. The homeschooling, unschooling, passion learning schools, project based schools have lit a spark. We need to re-define the idea of schooling and learning. We need more people to speak out about how we can make Learning Beautiful again.

The audience focused on the stage
Why I Write this Blog?

We live in a period of drastic change and the way education and learning is done, is going to change completely very soon. We need more examples of people that have taken an alternate path and done something valuable with that the learning they received on that path. When people get examples of several other successful ways to educate themselves, they will be more open to taking risks and taking control of their own learning.

We need to write about our experiences as auto-didacts. When more literature and culture through books, films, blogs come out more people will get access to information on how they can control their own learning.

Let us Learn Together
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