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My Effective Communication Project- of Book Review  

2009-12-05 09:33:37|  分类: 我的作品 |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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A Brief Report of Book Review

 

 

 

 

 

 

Prepared by Tian Pan

For Effective Communication

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

November 9, 2009

 

 

A Brief Introduction of Book Review

Book review is an important genre, and how to write and identify a good review is essential to students’ daily life. So it is significant to research it.

 

Definition: A book review (or book report) is a form of literary criticism in which a book is analyzed based on content, style, and merit. (Wikipedia)

 

What is a book review? A book review is a very flexible task; its length depends on its purpose and the writer. It can be a single paragraph about 50-100 words, or can be a substantial essay about 1500-2700 words. Also the depth of different book reviews can vary greatly. It may be simply about plot and self-thought, or may analyze humanism, cultural phenomenon, psychology etc. in the book. Usually it is a descriptive and critical analysis rather than a retelling about the book; it should investigate the quality, meaning and significance of a book. A book review is highly personal, but it must reflect the opinions of the reviewer.

 

Why people write book review? There are three styles of book review: as professional work, as assignment and textbooks. The professional reviewer needs to realize concealed meaning of the author. Also skilled reviewers may notice a meaningful idea which author implies in book unintentionally. Their work can make readers feel confident about their views about book or entirely change them. As assignment, writing book reviews can help one practice analysis skill, so students usually need to write reviews for school work.

 

How to write a good book review? First, writer should state the essential information about the book and author’s purpose. Then reveal the thesis and theme of the book. Following is to evaluate book’s usefulness, importance etc. to its intentional readers. There’re several tips of writing book review. Firstly, write a description not a summary of book, remember it is a book review. Secondly, write something not biography about author. Because we write some information about author is to help readers understand his/her work better, readers do not need to know all about author. Thirdly, the description and critical should be appropriate objective. The appraisal prefer to be indirect and through description and exposition of author’s opinions and aims.

 

Here is only a brief introduction about book review, if one wants to know more about book review, he/she should research more about it.

 

 

                              - 1 -                     Tian Pan

 

Follow or Be Lonely: The Mob Psychology in Lord of the Flies

(Abstract)

William Golding described a sad and astonishing story in Lord of the Flies. It goes beyond traditional realism and the conventional desert island adventure story in at least two respects: its view of man and its view of nature. The book arouses several questions: why it is so easy for Jack to affect other boys? Why the other boys didn’t have their own ideas? Does it true that human beings are born to be evil?

…………

…………

Rather than the native evil of people, I believe, mob psychology is the main cause of the tragedy in the book…At the beginning of the story, boys elected Ralph as their leader; even Jack’s choir supported this decision. Because some of them mentioned that Ralph had a conch and gathered everyone together. Actually they knew each other little and they all affected by mob psychology. Also in the beginning, only young children thought there was a beast. However, later everyone believed it because even some big kids claimed there was one. Only Simon had his own opinion and found the truth. But he was killed by the others; he couldn’t compete with a group of fanatical people. Boys’ turning to Jack also was affected by the atmosphere of the group. When more and more people felt hunting was more interesting, the left started to think the same. The imaging beast was the source of children’s horror and the boundary of the whole story. It turns out that compared with Ralph’s wise administration and rules, Jack’s dictatorial, fish-blooded , wild and crazy action had more deterrent and manipulative force towards children.(1) In a group, bloodiness and force always have greater influence. That is why people are easily crazy about war.

In a group a person can easily been affected by others’ action. We can always notice that if one throws a bottle to the judge during a football game because he thinks the judgment is unfair, the remaining football fans will do the same thing, and at last it can lead to violence. Also we have a name for this behavior: the theory of broken window.……

…………

Evil is to people what honey is to bee. (2) Golding also said that modern people’ main responsibility is to face their original features. When we face our nature, see our evil part, accept the fact we can easily been affected by the masses, when we know and understand ourselves, we can survive in the bad effect of mob psychology, we can avoid the tragedy in the book. That is why Golding wrote Lord of the Flies.

(1)   魏颖超,《英国荒岛文学》,P. 415

(2)   Golding William, The Hot Gates New York, Harvest /HBJ Book, 1965, P.87

 

                                 - 2 -                        Tian Pan

Comment on two samples

 

As you can see, sample one is a typical academic book review while sample two is a student’s homework, it’s a book review as assignment. The first one’s language is flute and native because it is written by an American writer. And the second one is written by a non-native speaker, so he makes quite a lot of grammar and spelling mistakes. However, I want to contrast more about structures of two book reviews.

 

Sample one’s subject is feminism. At the beginning, the author uses an attractive title to arouse readers’ intention. She doesn’t give a complete summary about the book, but the major points of Collins’ book exist in the whole article. Amy uses chronological order to exhibit Collin’s intention and her own opinion. This article is not only a book review but also an essay about feminism. It has its own question “Did feminism fail?” And at last Amy gives the answer “It did not fail.” This book review lets me (the reader) feel interested in both Collins’ book and feminism’s situation. It is an excellent book review. It has the power to give reader confidence and change his/her perception about the book.

 

Sample two follows the instructions about how to write a book review. First is a brief introduction about the book, and then is the summary of story, at last is the impression of the book. However, the writer uses 58% of the whole article for summary which makes the review very dry and not attractive any more. Unlike academic book review, it doesn’t give reader many new thoughts.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                                 - 3-                        Tian Pan

Sample one

Coffee, Tea, Then Equality

When they were stewardesses: a flight for executives, with all the trimmings, reserved for men only.

By AMY BLOOM

Published: October 15, 2009

During the last 15 years, there have been at least a dozen sitcoms starring physically unattractive, infantile, selfish, dimwitted husbands (ugly babies, really), unconditionally loved by their beautiful, clever, kindhearted and competent wives. It is hard to think of a single show in which this premise was reversed. Did feminism fail? Less than 3 percent of stay-at-home parents are men. Did feminism fail? This year, the radio host and comedian Steve Harvey wrote in “Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man” that “men want women to act like ladies at all times.” The book has been on the best-seller list for months. Did feminism fail?

Gail Collins’s smart, thorough, often droll and extremely readable account of women’s recent history in America not only answers this question brilliantly, but also poses new ones about the past and the present, as she explicates moments that were widely recorded and illuminates scenes that were barely remarked upon at the time. (Remember Betty Friedan? How about Ella Baker? Or Phyllis Schlafly, whom Collins presents as a smart, ruthless mother of six who arguably owed much of her success to the women’s movement?)

Collins, a columnist for the New York Times Op-Ed page, begins “When Everything Changed” with the best summary of American women’s social and political history that I’ve read. Rolling forward from a quick vignette in 1960 in which a secretary, Lois Rabinowitz, went to court to pay her boss’s speeding ticket, Collins makes it clear that whether it’s 1960 or 2009, secretaries have to do unpleasant things for their bosses. But the nature of those tasks has changed quite a bit. Rabinowitz was rebuked by the judge for wearing slacks. Rebuked, hell. He sent her home to change her clothes, instructed her husband to use a tighter rein and told reporters that it upset him to see “women tearing themselves down from this pedestal.”

Collins calls our attention to the experience of flight attendants to illustrate one of the ways our world has changed since then. They no longer have to be 25, size 4 and single. Sometimes they are men; sometimes they are grandmothers. When the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission was established, Collins tells us, its first complainants were stewardesses.

                              - 4-                           Tian Pan

 

The commission’s clerical staff was “still unpacking when Barbara Roads, a union leader for the flight attendants, and another stewardess arrived. . . .‘This woman came up to us, two blondes in stewardess uniforms, and she said, ‘What are you doing here?’ Roads recalled. The two women . . . told them about the airline ban on marriage, the age discrimination and the endless measurements to check for weight gain. ‘They couldn’t believe it.’ ”

In a 1964 Congressional hearing, when airline executives testified that it was imperative for businessmen that attractive women light their cigars and fix drinks, Representative Martha Griffiths said, “What are you running, an airline or a whorehouse?” and the conversation began to change.

Collins aims, she writes, to tell social history “by combining the public drama of the era with the memories of regular women who lived through it all.” She digs up stories from headlines of the past that a sensitive reader must choose to read as pointed farce. In 1964, the conservative, elderly Representative Howard Smith of Virginia, chairman of the Rules Committee, offered an amendment to add women to the list of groups to be protected from workplace discrimination. He did it as a last-ditch effort to block the Civil Rights Act. He did it, as he said later, as a joke. Then there’s the heartbreaking: When Rosa Parks, a lifelong activist, attended a community meeting in Montgomery, male ministers “monopolized the podium and told her she wouldn’t be required to speak. ‘You have said enough,’ they assured her.” Or that glorious day in 1963 when a quarter of a million people gathered to hear Martin Luther King’s extraordinary speech, “and very few people noticed that black women had been almost completely cut out of the event.” Though no women were on the speaking list, the men “kept pointing out that they had, after all, asked Marian Anderson to sing.”

These were times, Collins writes, in which women “were not meant to compete with men, to act independently of men, to earn their own bread, or to have adventures on their own. . . . They could not go into business without their husbands’ permission or get credit without male co-signers. . . . Then, suddenly, every­thing changed. The cherished convictions about women and what they could do were smashed in the lifetime of many of the women living today.”

The scale of that change is most evident in the brief follow-up interviews and epilogues that Collins offers at the end of the book. She has an editorial eye for the telling detail, but there’s also an unmistakable modesty on her part. She tends to conclude anecdotes and chapters with a quote from a woman who was part of the event, not with her own authorial aperçu. Our country got used to the idea that most

 

 

                                   - 5 -                         Tian Pan

women would work outside the home, and in the 1980s, as Collins writes, it got used to the idea “that women would not only make money to help support the family but also have serious careers.” She describes this as a decade for women’s optimism. More women than men attended college; the gender gap in pay began to narrow. (If you don’t want any gap at all, remain young, single and childless.) One of the many pleasures of “When Everything Changed” is that Collins also reminds us of what women did in private — stopped shaving their legs, started shaving their legs, took the pill — and what they wore: Shoulder pads! Miniskirts! And as Collins mentions, with no real reproach, impractical shoes. (She knows they’re bad, she does. But she understands the appeal.)

And now, women have run for president, “fought for their country, argued before the Supreme Court, performed heart surgery” and done a hundred things that would have been truly unimaginable 50 years ago — a time that is equally unimaginable to any woman under 30. Women can now take responsibility for themselves, particularly for their economic well-­being and reproductive rights, and that has changed everything.

Collins makes her strongest case, and showcases her finest writing, on the subject of what feminism has not been able to do. It is not easy to attentively raise your children while holding down a good and demanding job. Feminism did not remake the world of relationships. It did not change the fact that when Julia Roberts’s adorable hooker was carried off by Richard Gere’s handsome businessman at the end of “Pretty Woman,” none of us would have preferred to watch him rest his silvery head against her lovely shoulder, snuggling, safe at last in her strong arms. Feminism did not resolve the conflicting desires for passion and domesticity, familiarity and romance, and the irreconcilable differences between those who love the Marx Brothers and those who prefer the Three Stooges — but it did not fail.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                                 - 6 -                        Tian Pan

Sample two

Book reviews
Daddy-long-legs
Daddy-long-legs, is written by Jean Webster, an American writer. It seems that the book is written for children. However, I think every adult can find his memory of childhood when he finishs this book.

Judy is an orphan, who leaves the orphanage to accept education, with the help of “Daddy-long-legs”. She takes advantage of this opportunity to see the world clealy, and go to the high school in New York. During the time in school, Judy  makes friends with Julia, a girl comes from a rich family. And Juddy meet with Jeff ,Julia uncle, by chance. They soon fall in love with each other. But ,as the big difference between their surrounding, Judy wants to give up. In the graduation ceremany, the new about deadly of  Jeff and “Daddy-long-legs” come  at the same time. At last, Judy finds out that Jeff and “Daddy-long-legs” re the same person.

Only when you lose everthing you have, you can get evering you want. A person will know how to value what he has, only when he lost something. Leaning how to be grateful. These what I have got more from the Daddy-long-legs.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                                 - 7 -                        Tian Pan

Reference List

1.      Los Angeles Valley College Library

   http://www.lavc.edu/Library/bookreview.htm

2.      Stauffer Humanities and Social Sciences Library

   http://library.queensu.ca/research/guide/book-reviews/how-write

3.      University of Waterloo Library

   http://library.uwaterloo.ca/libguides/1-12.html

4.      Dalhousie University Libraries

   http://www.library.dal.ca/How/Guides/BookReview/

5.      Internet Public Library

   http://www.ipl.org/div/farq/bookreportFARQ.html

6.  Scholastic: teaching resource

   http://www.ipl.org/div/farq/bookreportFARQ.html

7.  LEO: Literacy Education Online

   http://leo.stcloudstate.edu/acadwrite/bookrev.html

8.        Wikipedia

   http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Book_review

9.        The New York Times: Sunday Book View

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/18/books/review/Bloom-t.html?scp=16&sq=book%20review&st=cse

10.    沪江部落

   http://bulo.hjenglish.com/question/1482/

 

11.《第二次世界大战以来的英国文学》,【德】豪斯特·W·特雷彻著,秦小孟译,上海外国语教育出版社,19852.

12.《英国荒岛文学》,魏颖超著,外语教学与研究出版社,200110.

13.《与威廉·戈尔丁的谈话》,杰克··拜尔斯,纽约,哈科特·布拉斯·朱文诺维茨公司,1970.

14.《现实主义之后:写实与实验》,陆建德主编,中国社会科学出版社,199710.

15.20世纪英国文学导读》,李公昭主编,西安交通大学出版社

16.《当代英国作家作品选析》,【英】彼得·泰森著,国际文化出版社,19871.

17.《集体的社会心理学》,【苏】彼得罗夫斯基著,人民教育出版社出版,1984年版.

18.《乌合之众》,【法】古斯塔夫·勒庞著,冯克利译,中央编译出版社,2005

 

 

 

 

 

                                 - 8 -                        Tian Pan

 

半个学期的心血,我的书评研究探讨,最后拿了个B,个人觉的不是非常满意,但是还是比较开心了,因为貌似没有人得A

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