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ME TALK PRETTY ONE DAY by david sedaris
Transcript of ME TALK PRETTY ONE DAY by david sedaris
David Sedaris is an American modern comedian and author whose essay collections satirically emphasize human foolishness and emotionality. Most of his works are based off himself and others around him.
Point of View
“what my French textbook calls ‘a true debutant’”
How did Sedaris managed to make us laugh at the other students without seeming to mock or make fun of them? What effect does he achieve by including actual dialogue?
What does Sedaris mean when he writes that "understanding" another language is "a small step, nothing more, yet its rewards are intoxicating and deceptive" (para. 28)?
Sedaris uses both understatement and hyperbole in this essay. Identify two examples of each, and explain the effect.
Sedaris describes what for most of us would be a very unusual class -- that is, a class in a foreign country with students from all over the world. Yet, for this essay to be funny, it must resonate with us to some extent. What aspect of the experience of being a student does Sedaris count on as common ground between himself and his readers.
Laughter: An Essay on the Meaning of the Comic
, philosopher Henri Bergson writes, "Several have defined man as 'an animal which laughs." They might equally as well have defined him as an animal which is laughed at; for if any other animal, or some lifeless objects, produces the same effect, it is always because of some resemblance to the man, or the stamp he gives it or the use he puts it to." Does "Me Talk Pretty One Day" more effectively present people as creatures who laugh or are laughed at?
“causing me to feel not unlike Pa Kettle trapped backstage after a fashion show.”
ME TALK PRETTY ONE DAY
by David Sedaris
Five of his essays collections, including
Naked, Holiday on Ice, When You are Engulfed in Flames, Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim, and Me Talk Pretty One Day
became New York Best Sellers.
Selection of Details
“it’s everyone into the language pool, sink or swim.”
“Call me sensitive, but I couldn’t help but take it personally.”
"Though we were forbidden to speak anything but French, the teacher would occasionally use us to practice any of her five fluent languages."
"the teacher singled me out, saying, "Every day spent with you is like having a cesarean section."
"David the hard worker, David the cut-up"
"When the phone rang , I ignored it. If someone asked me a question, I pretended to be deaf."
"Well, you should have been
"billboards picturing a cartoon stegosaurus sitting in a canoe and eating what appeared to be a ham sandwich"
"The teacher spent some time accusing the Yugoslavian girl of masterminding a program of genocide,"
"The first Anna... had front teeth the size of tombstones."