Mali's Classroom: Case Study

Decent Essays

Both people clearly see the issue of incorrect grammar in oral sentences from different perspectives. As a teacher, Mali sees it as a problem that needs to be fixed in order for anyone to make it anywhere, but Melissa believes that it’s just a shield that protects her from people telling her she’s wrong. The people with less power have to always be on guard, or they will be knocked even lower by being corrected for their grammar, but not for their ideas. It seems to always be about power; the person that has more power can correct the people who don’t, making them seem higher all the while. In Mali’s classroom, making it a “like” free zone was degrading and challenging to the people who needed to use them, and it is unclear to say that Lily Wilson was using these extra words because of her “lesser” gender identity that Melissa spoke against. …show more content…

Mali did say that “Like, Lily, Like, Wilson” did break her habit, and he said that it made her a stronger speaker as a result; “So I finally taught someone something, namely, Lily changing her mind.” In this case, the steady corrections over time made it possible for the students to break their habits.Melissa shows that she believes this to be a negative, however; “...invisible red pens crossing out sentences that weren’t even there…” The way she phrases it, it appears to simply be an overly-critical voice that was forced by other people to be her own. The major question that these two slam poems poses is whether that voice is a good thing or a bad thing. To Melissa, it’s just the old society worming its way into the new generations, and putting their grammatical beliefs first, thus suppressing their voice. To Mali, it’s just the opposite; the correct ways of speaking empower you with self-confidence to declare what you believe

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