Read South Africa Spreads the Word presented below. Look up unfamiliar words in your dictionary. Then write your essay of approximately 500 words, with an introduction, supporting paragraphs, and a conclusion.
Your essay must respond to the following:
1.Briefly summarize the article and identify the main problem discussed.
2.Describe your own experience when someone hindered your learning.
3.Explain how your attitude to learning has changed since then. How might change affect your future?
Your essay should fully answer all three parts. Read each one carefully and plan your answer before you begin.
South Africa Spreads the Word
by Robyn Dixon, Los Angeles Times, Sept. 21, 2011
The worst thing about growing up a bookworm in a South bookworm: someone who loves to read
African squatter camp was the lack of books. Reading was squatter camp: where people, usually poor,
un-African. William Gumede remembers. It wasnt manly — live on land they dont own
like sports or kite-flying. So if you did get your hands on a book,
youd better have a good place to hide it, or youd get a beating
and see your book ripped up.
The day he heard that a mobile library was coming to a
nearby township in Eastern Cape province, he and a friend walked
miles to see it, and the library card changed his life. It opened
another world for me, a world parallel to my own world, says
Gumede, 41. I read about boys my age doing all kinds of things
in other parts of the world. It broadened my horizons.
To be seen with a book was to be seen as a sissy, so I had sissy: usually an insulting name for a male
many fights. I remember very clearly, one of the books got torn. cowardly or weak
It was one of the boys three years older than I. He said, Why have
you got a book? Whats wrong with you? Five or six others tried
to grab the book, and in the struggle a page was torn out.
Reading was not the only thing that set him apart: Few
children went beyond prmary school, and his friends were stunned
to hear he was going to high school. In the community, aspira- aspirations: strong desires for high
tions were exceptionally low, he said. I remember being achievement
annoyed. The idea was that I would just give up and do what
everyone else did.
Today, Gumede is a prominent political biographer who
recently began writing childrens books. A Kites Flight sold
5,000 copies, a strong performance in South Africas limited
market. Gumedes passion is to overcome the lingering, anti- lingering: lasting longer than it should
intellectual prejudice in many parts of South Africa and foster anti-intellectual: hating education or ideas
a culture of reading in black communities.
And hes won some converts. When A Kites Flight was
published, someone sheepishly called him after reading about it
in a magazine. Do you remember me? a voice asked Gumede,
giving his name. Gumede struggled to recall. It was one of the
boys who used to beat him on his way to the library.
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