ELIT 8

  

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Reading Response: Each question: arounds 250 words, 250 words X2=500words

1) Please closely read this translation of Stéphane Mallarmé’s 1896 poem “A Throw of the Dice Will Never Abolish Chance” (English starts on page 13 of the PDF; ignore the French). I would like you to write a short response to this poem that seeks meaning in it. Find a single line or a sequence of lines that says something to you. Try to interpret part of the poem. This poem is famously mysterious, and on some level is thought to be about not-knowing itself. If you feel very lost, feel free to google and read some background if you want to. One small hint that may help is that most people agree there’s a narrative in the poem about a sailor, floating in the ocean amid wreckage of a boat, throwing dice into the air. But what I really want you to do is to find meaning for you in the strange text of this poem. I’m not worried about you being “right” about any part of it. Maybe try to be as interestingly wrong as possible.
 

2) Separately, I’d like you to spend at least 20 minutes making a list of everything you know you don’t know about the digital platforms you use on a daily basis. Examples: your phone, Google, Instagram, Sakai. How specific can you be about what you don’t know? Put your list in a list format, bullet points. Feel free to brainstorm with a friend if you like. Make your list as long as you can in 20 minutes. Don’t spend too long writing one item. Again, don’t worry too much about being right.

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