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Fun, Oh Boy. Fun. You Could Die from It


Fun, Oh Boy. Fun. You Could Die from It By Suzanne Britt Jordan Pre-reading What expectations do you bring to an article entitled Fun, Oh Boy. Fun. – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Fun, Oh Boy. Fun. You Could Die from It

Fun, Oh Boy. Fun. You Could Die from It
  • By Suzanne Britt Jordan

  • What expectations do you bring to an article
    entitled Fun, Oh Boy. Fun. You Could Die from
    it? Can fun actually harm or kill you? In what
    ways? Do you think that Americans are too much of
    a fun culture? Why or why not?
  • Do you think we Changsha people have a fun
    culture? Why or why not?

  • Consider the contrasts between, and shades of
    difference within, puritan (par. 3).
    selfless (par. 4), and Licentiousness (par.
    9). Or between epitome (par. 11), reverently
    (par. 13), and blaspheme (par. 13). What do
    these words imply about the essay, the author?
    What do you guess the essay is likely to say?

About the author Suzanne
Britt Jordan
  • Born in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, and
    attended Salem College and Washington University.
    She has been a columnist for the Raleigh News and
    Observer and Stars and Stripes, European edition,
    and has written for other newspapers and

  • Jordans books include a collection of essays,
    Show and Tell (1982) Skinny People Are Dull and
    Crunchy like Carrots (1982), an expansion of her
    essay "That Lean and Hungry Look" and A Writers
    Rhetoric (1988), a college textbook. This essay
    originally appeared in the "My Turn" column of
    Newsweek magazine.

  • Puritans refer to a group of radical English
    protestants that arose in the late sixteenth
    century and became a major force in England
    during the seventeenth century. Puritans wanted
    to purify the Church of England by eliminating
    traces of its origins in the Roman Catholic
    Church. In addition, they urged a strict moral
    code and placed a high value on hard work. After
    the execution of King Charles I in 1649, they
    controlled the new government, the Commonwealth.

  • Oliver Cromwell, who became leader of the
    Commonwealth, is the best-known Puritans. Many
    Puritans, persecuted in their homeland, came to
    America in the 1620s and 1630s, setting colonies
    that eventually became Massachusetts. The words
    puritan and puritanical have come to suggest a
    zeal for keeping people from enjoying themselves.
    One who is scrupulous and strict in his religious
    life often used reproachfully or in contempt
    one who has overstrict notions.

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Structural analysis of the Text
  • The essay evaluates the fun side of the
    American culture in an ironic way. The first five
    paragraphs, which form the introduction to the
    essay, provide a stipulative definition of fun.
    Then in the main body of the text, the writer
    gives an extended definition of it by pointing
    out what it is not. The essay concludes with an
    anecdote that further explains what fun is. To
    develop the definition, a number of methods have
    been employed, among which are narration.,
    comparison and contrast.

In reading
  • What other rhetorical strategies are used in this
    essay? (hint pars. 8 14 pars. 6 10
  • Repetition
  • Simile
  • Personification

Vocabulary Building
  • 1. A. something precious
  • B. by all-powers
  • C. she feels terrible
  • D. Gosh
  • 2. A. render unimportant or insignificant
  • B. failing
  • C. walking aimlessly or idly
  • D. drinking greedily or excessively
  • Gaiety, merriment

Understanding the Writers ideas
  • 1. In pars. 1-5, she implies that fun is not
    easily come by it is not something common it is
    not something that necessarily comes daily and
    it is not simply pure pleasure.
  • 2. We would make it into fun, despite the fact
    that it may not have been so. For example, she
    cites things that got the reputation of being fun
    (6) family outings, sex, education, work, Walt
    Disney, church, staying fit.

Understanding the Writers ideas
  • 3. By placing happy faces on them.
  • 4. By stepping up the level of danger or
    licentiousness or alcohol or drug consumption.
  • 5. Taking Polaroid picture, swilling beer, buying
    insurance, mopping the floor, bowing, taking
    aspirin (10)

Happy face
(No Transcript)
Understanding the Writers ideas
  • 6. We usually anticipate the fun so much on big
    occasions that we end up missing it when it
    finally comes. It may even come on a Tuesday
    means that fun may come when we least expect it,
    when there is no big occasion.

Understanding the Writers ideas
  • 7. About fun, Jordan says not much is (12). She
    feels we ought to be more reverent about fun, to
    feel it more as a mystery than as something to
    which we are automatically entitled. It may even
    come when we are working or performing some duty,
    implying that those things can be the real fun
    in life (13)

Understanding the Writers ideas
  • 8. They were about twelve years old. They had
    just bought candyBit-O-Honey, malted milk balls,
    chocolate stars, Chunkies, M Msand were
    walking home together. Pams gestures were
    especially funny because they were truly enjoying
    each others friendshipthat is, having fun.

Understanding the Writers ideas
  • 9. She is regretful about growing up and
    feeling, therefore, that she has lost the kind
    of day and friendship and occasion that she had
    with Pam. It is difficult to say how sad or
    regretful she really is she seems more
    bittersweet than sad, although some readers might
    logically question why growing up precludes
    having fun

Understanding the Writers Techniques
  • 1. Fun comes unexpectedly, it is not there for
    the asking. Par. 13 provides the key elements of
    the thesis.
  • 2. The first two paragraphs are, in a way,
    definitions of fun. However, these two
    sentences, either singly or together, do not
    sufficiently define the abstract concept which is
    the subject of the essay The first (fun is hard
    to have) simply states the quality of the
    concepts the second (Fun is a rare jewel.)
    makes a metaphorical comparison.

Understanding the Writers ideas
  • 3. In the three paragraphs, Jordan mentions all
    sorts of things that are supposed to be fun,
    but does so in a way to suggest that she
    certainly does not think of them as automatically
    being fun. For example, in par. 7 she explains
    how happy face stickers are supposed to make
    fun out of something like a flunked test.

  • Par. 8 relates a vignette(???) in which a kid
    does not respond the right way to something which
    his or her parents are sure would be fun. And
    in par. 9 she becomes more serious in her irony
    by indicating that drug or alcohol abuse is
    sometimes a negative way of making fun out of
    times when life is not so thrilling

Understanding the Writers ideas
  • 4. The fact that we have accepted some things as
    fun mainly because, through advertising or
    cultural assimilation, we have come to think of
    them as having to be fun although we may not
    actually derive any pleasure from them.
  • 5. Jordan attempts to include in her definition
    and analysis the broad spectrum of objects,
    products, and activities which we have come to
    assume are fun, but may, in fact, not be so.

Understanding the Writers ideas
  • 6. The tone is talky and slightly cynical
    although essentially it remains a lighthearted
    irony through the use of conversational words and
    phrases. Among these are snakes alive! (3) by
    Jove (5) flunking (7) this aint fun, ma (8)
    Golly gee (8) those rough-and-ready guys (10)

Understanding the Writers ideas
  • 7. As in her use of everyday and everything,
    Jordan is attempting to show us just how many
    things from so many different types of activities
    we take for granted as having to be fun. In a
    way, she is trying to point out to us that we are
    often much too unselective in our evaluations of
    fun. Pars. 6 and 10 are especially effective
    for their use of multiple examples.

Understanding the Writers ideas
  • 8. Par. 12 serves as a transitional paragraph,
    whereas par. 13 is the first one to be mostly
    affirmative (It is a mystery.) The switch turns
    the tone of the essay from ironic or cynical to
    more serious and reminiscent of fun times in the
  • 9. Disney World (8) Polaroids (10) Bit-O-Honey,
    Chunky, M Ms (14). By using specific brand
    names, she brings specificity and familiarity to
    her illustrations.

Disney Land
M Ms
Understanding the Writers ideas
  • 10. Narration is used to illustrate aspects of
    the concept of fun. Par. 8 is the imagined
    story of a kid with his or her parents in Disney
    World. Par. 14 narrates a fun time Jordan had
    with her childhood friend, Pam. The narration of
    her childhood memory adds a nice, personal touch
    to the essay.

Understanding the Writers ideas
  • 11. Perhaps she wants her readers to begin and
    end this essay with the idea that fun is really
    quite simplenot so complicated and busy as all
    the things she describes in the body of the

Language points
  • somewhere along the line inf. During the time
    when you are involved in an activity or process,
  • Somewhere along the line, Jack seemed to have
    lost interest in their marriage.
  • Somewhere along the line, his father became
    addicted to gambling.

  • 2. deserve be worthy of (???????), e.g.
  • He deserves to be scolded for having broken the
    precious vase.
  • The composition deserves careful study.
  • deserve doing deserve to be done, e.g
  • deserve criticizing

  • 3. overshadow to make ( sb. Or sth.) less
    successful, important or impressive by comparison
    with others to dominate)
  • e.g.
  • Ben overshadows all his colleagues.
  • She is overshadowed by her younger and more
    attractive sister.

  • 4. beneficial producing results that bring
    advantages, e.g.
  • beneficial effects
  • An agreement has been reached that will be
    beneficial to both parties.

  • 5. reputation the opinion that people have about
    a particular person or thing because of what has
    happened in the past, e.g.
  • He has a reputation for honesty and efficiency.
  • The man began to establish a reputation as a
    writer at the age of 19.
  • earn / win / establish a reputation as
  • live up to your reputation

  • 6. flunk to fail, especially (in) a course or an
  • The boy was upset because he flunked (in) an
    English Exam.
  • Flunk out to expel or be expelled from a school
    or a course because of work that does not meet
    required standards.
  • We spent the day traipsing from one shop to

  • 7. very right (for the sake of emphasis), usu.
    used with the superlative form of adj. or first
    and last, etc. e.g.
  • There have been three accidents in this very same
  • The very first thing you must do is ring the
  • Shes the very worst cook Ive ever encountered.

  • 8. consumption consume, consumer
  • This is produced for domestic consumption.
  • There is too great a consumption of alcohol in
  • We have no more right to consume happiness
    without producing it than to consume wealth
    without producing it. (Bernard Shaw)(?????????????

  • 8. epitome an ideal a typical representation
  • His father is the epitome of goodness.
  • He is seenas the epitome of the hawkish,
    right-of-center intellectual.
  • Epitomize to be an epitome of something
  • He epitomizes the loving father.
  • She epitomizes all the good qualities of her

  • 10. no matter what no matter what happens you
    will definitely do sth, e.g.
  • Ill call you tonight no matter what.
  • No matter what, hell be there on time.
  • 11. flick make sth. move away by hitting or
    pushing it suddenly or quickly, especially with
    your thumb or finger

  • 12. dom 1) the state of being sth., freedom,
  • 2) a. a particular rank, an earldom??/ dukedom
  • b. an area ruled by a particular type of
    person, a kingdom
  • 3) inf. All the people who share the same set
    of interests, have the same job etc.,
  • Officialdom??, yuppiedom (uncountable nouns)

  • 13. go through
  • 1) suffer or experience sth. bad, e.g.
  • How does she keep smiling after all shes gone
  • 2) to use sth. and have none left, e.g.
  • Austria was so expensive we went through all
    our money in one week.
  • 3) a law was accepted, e.g.
  • The Bill went through Parliament without a
    vote. (??????????????)
  • 4) look at or for sth. carefully, e.g.
  • Dave went through all his pockets looking for the

  • 14. damper something that stops an occasion from
    being an enjoyable as it was intended to be, e.g.
  • The bad news put/cast/threw a damper on the party.

15 scan
  • (1) to examine (sth.) carefully, with the eyes or
    with a machine, in order to obtain information,
  • She anxiously scanned the faces of the young
  • men leaving the train in the hope of finding her
  • (2) To scan a text can also mean to look through
    it quickly in order to find a piece of
    information that one wants to get a general idea
    of what the text contains.

  1. It goes without saying that Shakespeare
    overshadows all the other playwrights throughout
    the ages.
  2. The Great Gatsby is commonly deemed as the
    epitome of the Jazz Age of the last century in
  3. It is advisable for you not to put a damper on
    his enthusiasm to further his studies at Harvard.

  • 4. Young people tend to make a fetish of
    glamorous stars in sports and entertainment
  • 5. They traipsed all the way to the Peoples
    Square for the celebrations of the National Day.
  • 6. He does not deserve such severe punishment, as
    he has committed neither serious errors nor grave
  • 7. Every time I met him, he would talk a whole
    lot of nonsense.

  • 8. He said that reputation is a trap into which
    many people are ready to fall.

  • Here is a note offering tickets to a friend. In
    notes of this kind, the specific offers should be
    clearly mentioned. Usually the reason for the
    offer is given. Sometimes a reply is required if
    the contents require one.


  • 10 May, 2000
  • Dear John,
  • Ive got two tickets for the Chinese Folk
    Song Concert, which is on this coming Sunday at
    730 p m. I know you have always been a music
    lover. But do you care for vocal recitals? If you
    are interested, we can go together. Please let me
    know by calling me up at my office.

  • David

  • Thanks for your attention!
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