Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson

1149 Words Feb 2nd, 2018 5 Pages
Most teens are trying to figure out who they are, what they believe, and how they fit into the world around them. Beginning in the late 1970s, a whole genre of fiction, referred to as coming-of-age literature, emerged and serves, at least fore many teens, as believable presentations of young people learning to navigate the difficulties of their lives, often fraught with feelings of rejection, seemingly unresolvable personal turmoil, social problems, school and family issues, etc. Indeed one value of reading is to see and better understand some aspect of ourselves through studying others. The reading of SPEAK, a somewhat controversial book because of its subject mater – rape --, is a worthwhile endeavor in any middle school classroom and offers many valuable life lessons to young teens. One of the many lessons, and Melinda’s main focus at school, is art. Art is not only a hobby, but also a way to better express oneself. Melinda says, in the beginning of the novel, “Art follow lunch, like dream follows nightmare.” (9). For many kids, having a hobby is an escape from the bad events in their life, whether it is social issues, school issues, or problems at home. With art, Melinda finds a way to escape the torture of the rest of her day. Another remark about art, from Melinda’s art teacher, suggests it as a pleasant subject of the day: “This is where you can find your…
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