Parallelism problem

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Parallelism problem

Post by Archived Topic » Thu Dec 20, 2001 8:41 am

I would appreciate anyone's help. Do I have a parallelism problem with the following:



There are a number of objectives that a community reading seeks to accomplish:

First. To encourage the simple fun of playing with beautiful language and literature in an expressive way. Reading aloud is a participatory activity that can be engaged in pleasurably by the entire family. By expressively using language well, people may become more familiar and comfortable with a more elegant use of language, which they may incorporate into their regular usage.

Second. Regardless of whether or not the parents or children come to the experience of reading aloud naturally, short and readily understandable children's stories that are challenging yet unthreatening can be selected for presentation. It is possible to learn to read one story, or a segment of a longer story, well and expressively, and to present that as a dramatic reading in a context that is emotionally safe, supportive, and fun. As long as the organization and requirements for participation are kept simple, people will be more likely to take a risk in attempting something new.

Third. Such community readings are an opportunity for families to plan and play together. They encourage fun, cooperation and intimacy in a way where each contributes according to his/her own ability. The atmosphere is non-authoritarian; the organization is non-hierarchical. If people see through rehearsing how simply and easily this can be done, they may take the initiative to attempt other works as readings.

Fourth. There is no emotional risk in engaging in such community readings. The challenge of presenting a children's story is limited in context and length. The audience consists of the other performers who are sharing a mutual challenge and experience. By parents actively engaging in the playfulness of visualizing and expressing joyful characters and story situations, the value of the pursuit is validated in ways the classroom teacher cannot accomplish.

Fifth. Because there are no requirements or expectations with regard to style, manner or competence of presentations, an unlimited range of possibilities is encouraged and supported. Parents and children can present their story in many different ways: with costumes or without, with props or without, simply or elaborately, using dance and movement, or merely sitting in chairs. The cost to a family is no greater than costuming for Halloween or other similar occasions.

Sixth. By encouraging families to work together on a project, values of cooperation, intimacy, sharing, teamwork, playfulness, and positive self-esteem are encouraged that will go a long way to teach parents and children how to engage with each other and their peers in a similar way. And they can experience learning as a cooperative team effort.

Seventh. By attempting to present these stories in a simple participatory way, both parents and children are challenged to confront the experience of the story's conflict and resolution. This can enable both parents and children to learn new ways to articulate the experience of dealing with social and emotional interactions that are depicted in children's stories. And it will help both parents and children learn to become more emotionally articulate.

Eighth. Through the leadership, encouragement and example provided by the organization of a community reading, parents and children will discover a new, creative way to play and interact with each other. They will see that such community readings can be initiated by families simply and independently, and they may continue to do so on their own.

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Parallelism problem

Post by Archived Reply » Thu Dec 20, 2001 8:56 am

It was not clear to me what you meant by 'parallelism', so I looked it up on the Merriam-Webster site. The definition that made most sense in the context of your question was "repeated syntactical similarities introduced for rhetorical effect".

Well, certainly the text (if not the syntax) is repetitive to the point of monotony. Is it intended for professionals in the field, or for parents?

If the former, it would appear to be a further instance of the self-important style adopted by 'experts' who believe that veiling a simple idea in a cloud of obfuscation and/or condescension improves the idea, or perhaps that the effort required to read it will attract the admiring applause of their peers on eventually struggling their way out through the far side of the text.

If the text is intended for parents, I suspect the majority of them will respond as I did, by yawning by the time they get halfway through paragraph two. This is, I suppose, a rhetorical effect, but possibly not one to be striven for.
Reply from Erik Kowal (Reading - England)
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Parallelism problem

Post by Archived Reply » Thu Dec 20, 2001 9:10 am

My dear fellow, so much dead wood would have to be cut out of your above tour de force before any attempt could be made to determine whether there is any lurking parallelism. I suspect Erik is right in his assessment. It reminds me also of academic gobbledygook in which Education Specialists pride themselves and result in no gain to the prospective recipients (students) of their theories. Are you being paid by the word for this? Frankly, I think the M-W definition: “4: a theory that mind and matter accompany one another but are not causally related” rings truer. In the above screed, I would say that the mind and body have suffered a severe causal disconnect in the writing.
Reply from Leif Thorvaldson (Eatonville - U.S.A.)
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