personal response to Anne Fadiman's essay Ice Cream from At Large and At Small

Personal response to Anne Fadiman's essay Ice Cream from At Large and At Small

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Kayla Murphy November 7, 2011 ENGL 4000 Dr. Anderson/Brown-Spiers Assignment 7 Literature is exciting to me as a reader because it offers on opportunity for creativity. Within each work of literature, I search for a meaning which is special and unique to me. Nothing run of the mill; something which seems as if the author reached out and whispered a secret to me and only me. I’m a selfish reader in that regard, I want to be the excavator of the work’s buried treasure. Anne Fadiman, however, offers a style of literature which is not immediately pleasing to my exclusive, members-only preferences. Fadiman’s frankness and clarity leaves little ambiguity in meaning. Every student of literature has wondered at some point or another if the author actually intended the hidden meanings that often seem tortured out of the text by a maniacal professor. Fadiman avoids this melancholy speculation with a direct approach, and in doing such, she avoids one of the most deadly traps in literature: the trap of misunderstanding. In her collection “At Large and At Small” Anne Fadiman devotes an entire essay and sixteen of her 196 pages to ice cream. What could possibly be so important about ice cream? If ever there was a topic for English teachers everywhere to relish in the ambiguity and uncomfortable confusion of, ice cream is it. It would be normal and expected for such an extensive discourse on a frozen dessert to incite questions of importance, relevance, and profundity in the reader. Fadiman, however, tells us exactly why and how ice cream is important. “I didn’t give a fig about the Constitution. I cared about the contents of Mr. Cabaniss’s
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Personal response to Anne Fadiman's essay Ice Cream from At Large and At Small

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