Individual Reading


- Confessions of an Eco-Sinner by Fred Pearce
- The Bottomless Well by Peter Huber and Mark P. Mills
- Farewell My Subaru by Doug Fine
- The Omnivore's Dilemma by Michael Pollan
- You Are Here by Thomas M Kostigen

Focus 1: Bias Due
As you are reading, comment on the following (mention your sources, though citations are not necessary)

a) What is the author's background? What is their education history? What sort of degrees do they hold? What is their employment history? Who writes them a paycheck?

b) Has the author written any previous books? Articles in journals? Mass-publication journals or focused audience scientific journals? Is the author a radio or tv broadcaster?

c) How careful is the author in citing statistics? Are there footnotes or endnotes for the reader to track? If there are graphs and charts, is the source of the data mentioned? How extensive is the author's bibliography? Is the author describing his/her own research whether formal or informal? Is the author collating the results of the research of other people?

Focus 2: Facts vs Emotions
As you are reading, comment on the following (you may quote from your book, cite page numbers please so we can go back to it)

a) As you are reading, note some of the vocabulary the author uses. Do you think s/he is using vocabulary that is emotionally charged? Is the author trying to get an emotional reaction from you? For instance, in the book I am reading, here is a section: "I...get into the groove of the pace...a calming feeling...we join the rest of the species...walking in step with all the other living things in the world." Kostigen p. 51.

b) So far, what do you think the object of this book is? What was the author's purpose in writing it? If you need assistance here, you might have a short conversation with one of your English teachers.

I will be checking these discussions while I am away. I'd appreciate it if you would have them written before school begins on Monday, that way I can comment before breakfast. Part of your class of Monday will be to respond to my questions/comments.