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 Poisonwood 
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I need some help. I'm having a really hard time connecting with Poisonwood Bible. Each of the characters is interesting in their own right and offers an interesting perspective of the circumstance that the family finds itself in. I fail to understand exactly where this fits with our discussions about the philosophy and social foundations of education. Maybe I'm not far enough into the book to see the bigger picture. What I do see clearly is how the family doesn't think that Adah is smart enough to see all the things she sees. It's really interesting how she is really overlooked by the family, especially her father. When I think about the family in general, it also interesting that of all the characters, the father is the least flexible. All of the other family members seem to adapt much better to the people and environment. He however holds steadfast to his own beliefs about religion and the education of women. Am I missing something here or am I not far enough into the book to see clearly?

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Tara Gilleland


Tue Nov 10, 2009 11:21 pm
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I completely agree with your opinion on the father, Nathan, being the least flexible character. I would even go as far as calling him ignorant. He placed his family in a situation without proper education and preparation. Even when everyone realized that they were in over their heads, he was unwilling to make any changes. Nathan Price is a great example for teachers, if you want to know what you shouldn't do.


Tue Dec 01, 2009 10:33 pm
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Nathan Price should never have been gifted with the family that he had. He could only care about his reasons for coming to the Congo. He never cared about how his family felt, or the danger they were in. Leah should never have blamed herself for Ruth May's death. Her father was the reason she was there. Her father was the reason she was in the terrible shape she was in. Her father was as guilty as if he had put the snake in the chicken house himself. He couldn't see the forest for the trees.

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Debra Shook Manasco


Wed Dec 02, 2009 2:56 pm
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I am not sure that Nathan Price really held on to his religious beliefs rather he held on to a dream or a goal he had to save the Congolese people. I think that he forgot why he was really there and that it was not his own strength that would accomplish his goals, but with the strength of Christ. I believe we can all learn from him that when we become inflexible or deeply rooted in tradition, then we too will lose sight of our dreams whatever they may be.

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Holly Timberlake


Thu Dec 03, 2009 9:17 am
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After having finished the book and discussed the book in class, it is interesting to think about how this book relates to education in general and more specifically to us as teachers. To me each character represents a part of the system that we are all apart of...even Ruth May. The saddest part of all is that Ruth May represents, at least to me, the idealism that new teachers enter the teaching profession with. Sadly enough it is the rigidness of the system, aka Nathan, that kills that idealism. Everyone else in the story represents to varying degrees how we adapt and change as we continue to teach. To me Orleanna is the teacher that endures for the sake of the children she teaches, until she can no longer take it. Leah is the teacher that is constantly looking for ways to change the system. Rachel is the teacher that adapts to the system and doesn't try to change the system. Eventually she becomes "institutionalized". Adah is the hardest to pin down but I believe she is the teacher that looks for ways to bend the system to her and let it work for her. Which type of teacher are you?

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Tara Gilleland


Mon Dec 07, 2009 8:32 pm
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I agree Tara, new teachers come in with fresh ideas and they are not afraid to try something new and then you have the veteran teachers (the Nathans) who think there is only one way to do something. It has been done that way forever. They think that if it ain't broke, don't fix it. It is really sad more so for the students.

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mimi rollins


Tue Dec 08, 2009 9:56 pm
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Nathan reminds me of some of the men that attend my church. I attend a fundamental Baptist church. Many believe there is this cookie cutter mold that Christians, or humans should fit into. If one does not fit into that mold they are questionable...possibly not saved at all. What happened to we are "precious in his sight"? Nathan's behavior and actions in Congo are a classic example of objectivity.

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~Crystal Hendrick~


Tue Dec 08, 2009 11:35 pm
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