TPO 23 Conversation 2
Professor：Hi, Bob. How is it going? Are you enjoying the Introduction to Literature class?
Bob：Yeah, it's great. Araby, that short story by James Joyce we read last week, it was awesome.
Professor：I'm glad you like it. Most of Joyce's work is very complex. A lot of students say that he is hard to understand. Normally, you wouldn't tackle Joyce in an Intro class, but I'd like to give my first year students a taste of his style, his psychological approach to literature, because ? mainly because it influenced other writers. I only wish we had more class time to discuss it.
Bob：Me too. So why did you pick Araby instead of some other story?
Professor：Well, um, first you should know that Araby is one of fifteen short stories by Joyce in a book called Dubliners. Uh, all the stories are related to one another, and they are set in the same time period. But Araby is the easiest one to follow. Though all the stories in the collection are written in stream of consciousness, which as you know, means they are told through the narrator's thought, through an inner monologue, as opposed to dialogue or an objective description of events. But Araby is easier because it's linear, the story unfold chronologically.
Bob：Still, I wish we could read whole novels by Joyce and discussed them in class.
Professor：That's what happens in my Master Writer Class.
Bob：Master Writer Class?
Professor：Yeah, I teach one on Joyce every spring. It's such a privilege, spending an entire term diving into a single body of work. And my students, they bring so much insight to the table that it's easy to forget who the professor is.
Bob：Oh, wow. That could actually solve my dilemma, uh, what I originally wanted to ask you ? um, I am working on my schedule for next term, and I've got room for one more course, and I'd like to take more literature. Could I take your Master Writer Class on Joyce?
Professor：I'm sorry. I should have mentioned. Uh, Master Writer is an advanced seminar. So students need to get a strong foundation in literary theory and criticism before I let them in the room.
Bob：But I have gotten really good grades on all my paper so far, I'm sure I can keep up. Couldn't you make an exception?
Professor：Your grades are excellent. But in our intro class, you are reviewing the basics, like plots, setting and character and getting your first real exposure to different literary styles.
Bob：But why do I have to study different styles to understand Joyce's novels?
Professor：There are a lot of little details involved in interpreting literature. And like with Joyce. His novels have very unique structures. The only way to appreciate how you meet there is by studying a variety of authors.
Bob：Oh, OK. So could you suggest a different literature class then?
Professor：Sure. There's doctor Clain's course on nineteenth-century novels. It's more focused than the class you're in now. But it will build on your current knowledge base and give you the background you need. That, plus a couple more foundational classes, and you will definitely be ready for my seminar.
1 Why does the man go to see the professor?
A. To discuss a grade he received on a paper
B. To get advice about which course he should take next term
C. To ask a question about a reading assignment
D. To request permission to take an advanced course
2 Why did the professor assign "Araby" instead of another short story from Dubliners?
A. It is not related to the other stories in the collection.
B. It is the shortest story in the collection.
C. It is told from the narrator’s point of view.
D. It is organized in a predictable way.
3 What is the professor's attitude when she discusses the master writer seminar'?
A. She is surprised that more students do not enroll in it.
B. She is excited because she learns a great deal from her students.
C. She is pleased because it gives students a strong foundation in literary theory and criticism
D. She is disappointed that she does not get to teach it as often as she would like.
4 What does the man imply when he mentions the papers he has written?
A. He feels ready to study literature that is more challenging.
B. He understands what he must do to improve his grades.
C. He already appreciates the uniqueness of James Joyce’s novels
D. He is trying to match his literary style to James Joyce’s.
5 What does the professor say about the course on nineteenth-century novels?
A. It is one of the courses that she will be teaching next term.
B. It is offered at a time of day that will work with the man’s schedule.
C. It is a natural progression from the course the man is taking now.
D. It will compare nineteenth-century novels with a James Joyce novel.