5.22.2009

ok, to post on this

Britons 'scared of reciting poetry'
19 hours ago
Britons are baffled by poetry, with many saying they live in fear of being asked to recite a poem in public, research has found.

first, to dismiss the hack lead in


Seven in 10 (73%) are "scared" by the genre, according to a poll of 1,500 adults, while two thirds (67%) admit reading and reciting poetry leave them tongue-tied.

...

On occasions when a recital is called for, such as a wedding or anniversary, more than six in 10 people (61%) say they dread being asked to perform. But more than two thirds of those questioned (67%) say they have put pen to paper to create their own verses.

the survey statistic leading into the tag line seems to be more about 1) public speaking, 2) being judged, in public, on quality of recitation/memorization -- perhaps of some weird thing forced-memorized at school 50 years ago

that the surveyed people had hazarded a love poem -- ah, yes, the idea behind one of my unoffered, but syllabized courses for ucla extension

--

More than eight in 10 (82%) say they cannot recite any poems by heart...

again, about memorization, not about poetry at all, though I think there is an emerging subtext that rhythm, meter, rhyme don't act alone as mnemonic devices: they just aren't as powerful as, say, in a purely oral culture AND HAVEN'T BEEN FOR A REALLY REALLY LONG TIME

The poll, conducted to mark the transmission of the BBC documentary Off by Heart, revealed that the older generation, those aged 60 and over, was more likely to know a poem by heart.

see -- this is about MEMORIZATION

Seven in 10 (72%) could remember the lines they learnt as a child, with Edward Lear's The Owl and The Pussycat and Wilfred Owen's war poem Dulce et Decorum Est among those that have stayed with them.

Daisy Goodwin, who produced the documentary and organised a national poetry competition for primary schools, said she was unsurprised by the findings.
She said: "It is almost entirely to do with teaching poetry in schools. Learning poetry by heart went out of fashion in the 1960s. Unless you learn poetry as a child you never get the taste for it."

the poll and doc is really about memorization and performance/public speaking

that the docmaker concluded that people not being forced to memorize rhyming pap in gradeschool leads to them not liking poetry is idiotic; she seems to have no clue about the actual content of her questions or the meaning of the results/footage/responses

what could have been interesting might have been how rhythm and rhyme aren't effective mnemonic devices, or why committing poems -- or much else, other than how to locate info, in this new era of to-hand information -- is desirable, especially when being forced to memorize bizarre texts removed from personal experience, emotion, or opinion, and then tested and graded on the result, has obviously turned off at least five generations to public speaking


makes me remember those bizarre speech/monologues our school used to have for "speech contests" and the ways we memorized and performed them for competitions -- they were typescripts -- some on yellow -- stapled onto 12 1/2 x 9 royal blue slightly heavier stock, such that the top 1/2 inch was folded over, and there were two staples holding the packet together

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