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The Road is Not a Road. Using Observation of the Literal to Discover the Abstract A. E. Harter, 2011.

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Presentation on theme: "The Road is Not a Road. Using Observation of the Literal to Discover the Abstract A. E. Harter, 2011."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Road is Not a Road. Using Observation of the Literal to Discover the Abstract A. E. Harter, 2011

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3 Two roads diverged in a yellow wood… Two road diverged in a wood and I I took the one less travelled by and that has made all the difference. Literal: Two roads available, speaker must choose a path. Abstract: Life is full of choices, and sometimes making the harder choice pays off. Road = big life choice.

4 Devils Advocate: Thats not a poem about anything! Its just a guy trying to decide which path to walk on! WHO CARES? (Literal thinking) But if we consider symbolism, and the fact that the author created the poem for a reason, we can infer that hes trying to make a statement of some kind… (Abstract thinking)

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6 Student Attempt: Too literal In this picture there is a lot of color that all flows together. The main focus of this picture is obviously the huge machine that takes up the entire picture. And this man is really small looking so I think that it symbolized how big the machine actually is. (…) It is kind of difficult to get an interpretation out of this because it is just a picture of something and showing it to people, when the photographer added in the man to the picture that just showed that the object was really large. If the man was not present then it could seem like it is just a very close shot at something that is actually small…

7 The road is not a road.

8 See the invisible… Use literal observations as clues. Literal observation: The main focus of this picture is obviously the huge machine that takes up the entire picture. And this man is really small. Abstract conclusion: Man = humanity Machine = Technology… Possible theme could be that while human beings themselves are relatively small/fragile, they are capable of creating powerful technology, but that technology could swallow us if were not careful (notice how the collider kind of resembles a gaping throat?? Tubes/tentacles?) Pit of Sarlacc from Return of the Jedi ->

9 Lets see if we can get to abstract thinking with some photos. Well first observe, then point out features. Well acknowledge the literal subject of the photo. Well make some inferences to get to THEME (the abstract message an author is trying to send). Remember, ASSUME that the picture is more than just what you see on the surface. All good pictures tell a story.

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18 All images courtesy of 2010 Visions of Earth feature in National Geographic, accessible at earth/visions-earth-2010


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