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I made it through 50 or 60 pages. I had not had any intent to read it, as I have heard more than enough stories about the fish out of water young white teacher who is able to "save" the inner city youth from the apparent inevitability of failure.
A coworker strongly recommended the book to me and actually put it in my hand, so I decided to give it a chance. As I read one journal entry after another, I was puzzled by the fact that ever I will begin by stating that I did not read this entire book.
As I read one journal entry after another, I was puzzled by the fact that every entry of every child seemed to be written in almost the same exact voice. The vocabulary and expressions used were not what I would expect to hear from a group of high school freshmen, particularly in a group of kids that was previously underachieving and hated reading and writing.
Inner city dialect was juxtaposed with difficult vocabulary and phrasing that seemed adult and dated on almost every page. Maybe I was just missing something. There also was not any description of how Ms. Gruwell was able to elicit the trust of all of her students so quickly so that they would be comfortable writing about their crimes and personal issues and get them to write pages and pages when they had refused to do any writing before.
It seemed that she was able to have them writing full entries that were eloquent and insightful within the first month or two.
I know that there is truth to these stories. I know that this is a real class and Ms. Gruwell is a real teacher. Perhaps if the diaries were in their original form, complete with spelling and grammar errors, it would make more sense.
These are real kids. They have real stories. I want to hear them in their words. Did anyone else have this problem?She Writes is the world's largest online community for women writers.
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