I was blown away by this TED talk by Ali Carr-Chellman. She gets it. She actually sees boys’ penchant for violence as a potential tool in the classroom! The first classroom I walked into in the 10th grade upon changing from private Christian school to a public high school was an English classroom. I can still remember the teacher asking me to stay after class because the book that I chose to read was about the role of Marine scout snipers in Vietnam. With the attentive eye of a caring psychotherapist mixed with the concern of a prison guard, she asked me why I was so interested in “that” subject matter. I felt like I was some kind of deviant because I didn’t flock to books like Angela’s Ashes or Jane Eyre. I seriously thought that all of “great” literature was a load of sentimental but well-penned girl talk. I thought that poems were much like astrology: intentionally vague, suggestive, and ultimately relying on the readers imagination for any kind of deeper meaning. But why would my English teacher not have simply handed me some goddamn Hemingway or Tolstoy or Dostoevsky? Why would she assume that my preoccupation with war and violence was somehow pathological instead of a normal part of male psychological development? Ali Carr-Chellman answers these questions and more. Brilliant stuff!
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