Monthly Archives: February 2020

Write It Right: Redound for Conducive

“Redound for Conducive. ‘A man’s honesty redounds to his advantage.’ We make better use of the word if we say of one (for example) who has squandered a fortune, that its loss redounds to his advantage, for the word denotes a fluctuation, as from seeming evil to actual good; as vilification may direct attention to one’s excellent character.”

Excerpted from: Bierce, Ambrose. Write it Right: A Little Blacklist of Literary Faults. Mineola, NY: Dover, 2010.

English Usage: Admission/Admittance

Here is an English usage worksheet on the nouns admission and admittance if you have any call for it.

If you find typos in this document, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

Duke Ellington on Fate

“Fate is being kind to me. Fate doesn’t want me to famous too young.”

Duke Ellington

Quoted in N.Y. Times Magazine, 12 September 1965

Excerpted from: Schapiro, Fred, ed. The Yale Book of Quotations. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2006.

The Weekly Text, February 21, 2020

For the end of Week III of Black History Month 2020, here is a short reading on the late, great Muddy Waters along with the vocabulary-building and comprehension worksheet that attends it.

[Addendum: first, here is a very cool image of Muddy Waters by the great illustrator Drew Friedman; if it weren’t sold out, I would definitely buy it–I’ve already collected a few of Mr. Friedman’s prints. Second, here is Muddy Waters’ appearance at the farewell concert of The Band in 1976, “The Last Waltz.”]

If you find typos in these documents, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

Heuristic

“Heuristic (adjective): Serving as the discovery of truth or furthering investigation, as in the case of a useful and stimulating (if not logical or conclusive) method, presentation, or argument, and especially one used by a student to learn for himself. Adverb: heuristically; noun: heuristic.

‘My coarse distinctions between two kinds of fiction are useful heuristically, but they give a damaging impression of clear boundaries and a misleading impression of two armed camps.’ Annie Dillard, Living by Fiction”

Excerpted from: Grambs, David. The Random House Dictionary for Writers and Readers. New York: Random House, 1990.

Word Root Exercise: Gastr/o

Moving right along on this chilly afternoon, here is a worksheet on the Greek root gastr/o. It means, as you probably already inferred, stomach. It’s a very productive root in the English language, particularly for people entering the health sciences professions.

If you find typos in this document, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

W.E.B. Dubois on the Talented Tenth

“The Negro Race, like all races, is going to be saved by its exceptional men. The problem of education, then, among Negroes must first of all deal with the Talented Tenth.”

W.E.B. Dubois

The Talented Tenth” (1903)

Excerpted from: Schapiro, Fred, ed. The Yale Book of Quotations. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2006.

Cultural Literacy: The Kansas-Nebraska Act

Here is a Cultural Literacy worksheet on the Kansas-Nebraska Act, which in a short paragraph, and with your expert teaching, will illustrate for your students how the subjugation and forced labor of persons of African descent is bound up in the growth of the United States.

If you find typos in this document, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

4 Elements

“Fire * Earth * Air * Water

The ancient division of the world of matter into four categories underwrote a whole interlinked system of equivalences that helped define human character, tend imbalances, mend illness and peer into the future. For the four elements were also assessed on a scale of hot and cold, wet and dry and given particular associations.

Thus, Fire was both hot and dry and linked with one of the four humours (the choleric) and the astrological signs of Aries, Leo and Sagittarius. Earth was dry and cold, and allied to black ‘melas’ bile (melancholic) and the three earth signs of Taurus, Virgo and Capricorn. Air was both hot and wet, and connected with blood and a sanguinous character and the three air signs of Gemini, Libra and Aquarius. Water was wet and cold, allied with a phlegmatic character and the water signs of Cancer, Scorpio and Pisces.

The elements can also be allied to the four suits of cards, either our modern symbols or the fourteenth-century forms that are used in the tarot pack: Cups (water), Swords (air), Batons (fire) and Coins (earth).”

Excerpted from: Rogerson, Barnaby. Rogerson’s Book of Numbers: The Culture of Numbers–from 1,001 Nights to the Seven Wonders of the World. New York: Picador, 2013.

Prime Numbers

OK, here is a short reading on prime numbers along with the vocabulary-building and comprehension worksheet that accompanies it.

If you find typos in these documents, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.