Responsibility and the Hero’s Trial

Saturday, March 24th, 2007

Matthew Polly is kind enough to leave a note on this post. He is the author of American Shaolin.

I’ve always been a fan of the literature of the hero’s journey and Mr. Polly’s book falls into this category. But it reminds me of a conversation I had a few weeks back with my fiction students about the core issue of fire, a metaphor for the hero’s trial: Matthew Polly against himself; Sir Gawain and himself and the Green Knight.

Most of the students agreed that a college education can–and I emphasize the “can”–serve as one step on a trial. So this could be added to my last post about the ethics list:

1. Students should seek out trials. (As should faculty)

Thanks, Matt.


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