What missed opportunities are there for teachers who do not recognize the personal narrative’s natural advantages over fiction! If you understand fiction at all, you understand that it is its realistic, not fantastical, elements that make it so appealing. Fictional plots, settings, and characters have to seem real to the reader in order for them to be interesting—plots have to make sense, descriptions of settings must seem familiar, and characters’ thoughts must, at least vaguely, mirror our own thoughts. But even with the best fiction writers, the imagination sometimes can produce false fabrications. Personal narratives, such as those found in this textbook, are for the most part not fabrications, but represent the real thoughts, feelings, and situations of real people. The text will include works by Plutarch, Lewis and Clark, George Müller, James Boswell, Booker T. Washington, Charles Dickens and others. An accompanying study guide is available separately.
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