For our final performance, Alexandra and I chose four artifacts which represented the gems of our learning from this semester in Literary Kinds. The artifacts were:
1. sourdough bread
3. twigs from a tree
4. friendship bracelets
I’ll describe two of the artifacts:
1. bread: The leavening agent in sourdough bread sourdough starter. Some of the dough from the previous batch of bread is saved and left out on the counter to ferment. When it’s time to make more bread, you mix the starter with water and flour and a little bit of salt (and maybe yeast and sugar if you like fluffier bread). Because sourdough bread begets sourdough bread, we used our loaves to represent our conversations in class about idea ownership. The idea is that just as bread comes from the bread before it, so do our ideas.
I got into baking bread two years ago. I didn’t learn by following recipes, but this one looks pretty good. The most essential bread baking advice I got at the beginning of my forray is that it’s basically impossible to mess up. Dough tastes good, especially when it’s hot and you made it. Anything can be saved with the right amount of butter.
2. twigs from a tree: For me, the twigs from the tree represented my growth as reader in this class. If you were walking down the road and saw the Wollemi Pine, and you didn’t know that it was the Wollemi Pine, you might just shrug and continue your walk. If you knew how to read the tree, then you might stop and marvel at the splendor of its rarity. Similarly, when you read a book, and you aren’t aware of what went into creating it, it’s easy to finish and go on about your life. If you spend time learning how to read the story, you might be able to slow down and appreciate all it has to offer.