Dr. Cheryl Novins
RDG 101 OLA
Spring 2014
 Deconstructing a text focuses on critically

reading the text and asking yourself if you are
going to ACCEPT the informa...
 We have already looked at the first paragraph of

Colleen earlier in this module.

I was 18 and dating a man my parents ...


“I realized I was pregnant when the smells from chemistry
class kept making me sick. A friend convinced me to go
her do...
“Although I had no strong religious convictions, the
visit to the clinic for my initial “consultation” left me
feeling bad...


“I had heard some things about abortion, and I knew it was
probably wrong. So that whole week, I talked with friends
an...
“No one, at any time, told me anything about adoption or keeping
the child. In fact, one of my teachers was a nun – and I ...
“My boyfriend didn’t have the money, so my parents volunteered
to pay for it. When I broke down in front of them, saying t...
`“When the time came, my boyfriend and some friends from school
went with me. There were no protesters, no pro-life people...
“I was very scared, mostly of the pain they said I might feel. With
the counselor, I mostly cried. But she just agreed wit...
“Waiting to have my name called, I tried to convince
myself of these things. I just wanted the whole thing
to be over with...
“The suction machine was very loud – a horrible noise. They had a
picture on the ceiling for you to look at so you wouldn’...
“My boyfriend got drunk while I was in the clinic. He could hardly drive me home.
He was late picking me up and I stood on...
“In the end, the abortion did not “solve all my problems” as
everyone had promised. My parents still kicked me out. I had ...
“One night during a drunken spree, he held a knife to
my chest. I told him to kill me, that I wanted to die. I
had nothing...
“My abortion was about ten years ago. To me, it’s like a bad, bad
nightmare, deep in the past, best forgotten. I still hav...
“I’ve had one child since then, and I’m pregnant again. These
children are my joy — and my forgiveness from God. My little...
“I now picket the clinics in the area, and I write letters to the paper
and give money to pro-life groups. This helps a li...
“I know now the lies I was told, the truths that were withheld from
me, the facts that were glossed over or left out. As a...


“I am just glad that I’m able to tell others. I’m glad that I can be outside
that clinic when no one was there for me. ...
 In this PowerPoint I separated the text and

my deconstruction of each section so you
could read my thought process thro...
Upcoming SlideShare
Loading in …5
×

MODULE 2 NOVINS Deconstructing Colleen Spring 2014

424 views

Published on

Critical Reading / Deconstructing Text

Published in: Education, Spiritual
0 Comments
1 Like
Statistics
Notes
  • Be the first to comment

No Downloads
Views
Total views
424
On SlideShare
0
From Embeds
0
Number of Embeds
128
Actions
Shares
0
Downloads
3
Comments
0
Likes
1
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide

MODULE 2 NOVINS Deconstructing Colleen Spring 2014

  1. 1. Dr. Cheryl Novins RDG 101 OLA Spring 2014
  2. 2.  Deconstructing a text focuses on critically reading the text and asking yourself if you are going to ACCEPT the information presented or if you need to QUESTION the information presented.  As we look at Colleen’s story – piece by piece – follow my thought process through the deconstruction.  (You will be asked to deconstruct a text at the end of this module.)
  3. 3.  We have already looked at the first paragraph of Colleen earlier in this module. I was 18 and dating a man my parents strongly disapproved of. So they “made a deal” with me: they would send me to college if I would break up with him. I agreed, though I never really meant to keep my end of the bargain.  If you need, review that information prior to continuing with the PowerPoint.
  4. 4.  “I realized I was pregnant when the smells from chemistry class kept making me sick. A friend convinced me to go her doctor in town. He diagnosed pregnancy immediately, saying, “Such a shame, another young one.” He told me not to worry, that “it” could be “taken care of.” He never once said anything about keeping the baby, but gave me a card from the local abortuary.” Deconstruction: The doctor seems to be too negative. I can’t imagine a doctor would actually verbalize those thoughts. At first I thought maybe he knew Colleen her whole life b/c he seemed a bit personal about his comments, but then I noticed it was her friend’s doctor and not her own doctor. I’m sure she didn’t go to her own doctor b/c she was hiding her pregnancy from her parents.
  5. 5. “Although I had no strong religious convictions, the visit to the clinic for my initial “consultation” left me feeling bad. The nurse told me to come back in a week with the money to have it done.  Deconstruction: I’m not exactly sure why she mentioned religion. There are many people who are not religious and think abortions are not the way to go. I wonder what Colleen means by “feeling bad.” Was she sad that she got into this mess? Was she upset that she had to face this alone? Also, she puts the nurse in a bad light. Doesn’t she know it’s a business and it’s the nurses business to inform her about the money needed for the procedure?
  6. 6.  “I had heard some things about abortion, and I knew it was probably wrong. So that whole week, I talked with friends and teachers, looking for advice. One female teacher in particular advised me to have it done. She told me that she had had several abortions, that it was “nothing,” and that I didn’t need this trouble in my life right now. Deconstruction: This just sounds wrong to me. I don’t understand how a teacher could share such personal information with Colleen. I also can’t imagine that the teacher told her that having an abortion wasn’t a big deal. I know that in high schools there are guidance counselors and social workers who work with students who find themselves pregnant. I wonder if Colleen is actually telling the truth here.
  7. 7. “No one, at any time, told me anything about adoption or keeping the child. In fact, one of my teachers was a nun – and I approached her, too, with my problem. I think now that I really wanted someone to say “No! Don’t do it!” But even the nun told me that abortion was the best route for me.”  Deconstruction: I really think that the nun’s comments are taken out of context here. I know that nuns are not supposed to be prochoice. I also don’t see any circumstance in which a nun would say an abortion would be the right course of action. A nun’s first allegiance is to the church and they are supposed to hold everyone up to the values of the church. I wonder if Colleen put the information about the nun in her narrative because she wanted to stress the point that there was no one who challenged the idea of abortion.
  8. 8. “My boyfriend didn’t have the money, so my parents volunteered to pay for it. When I broke down in front of them, saying that I thought it was wrong to do this, they told me they would kick me out of the house if I didn’t have the abortion. My father said he wouldn’t have any “little brown babies in his house!” (My boyfriend was Italian-Puerto-Rican.) They told me that if I had the baby, I would be completely on my own. I felt like there was absolutely no way I could escape the inevitable.”  Deconstruction: It seems like Colleen keeps talking about ultimatums her parents give her. I can’t imagine that her parents are this heartless and uncaring. I think it’s horrible that her father is such a racist. It is sad that he was unable to accept this child. Maybe the reason the father didn’t like the boyfriend from the beginning is because he was Italian-Puerto-Rican. It’s horrible how some people in our society make decisions about others without getting to know them.
  9. 9. `“When the time came, my boyfriend and some friends from school went with me. There were no protesters, no pro-life people. In fact, during the whole time of this crisis, I never heard a word about or from the pro-life side. I was led to a room with a whole group of girls, just like me, waiting to have their babies killed. No one talked. No one looked at anyone else. They called our names, one by one.”  Deconstruction: It seems that Colleen was sad that she didn’t have to cross a picket line and wasn’t accosted when walking into the clinic. That is exactly opposite of how most people would feel. I think Colleen tried to show the severity of her actions by using phrases like “babies killed” and “no one talked” and “called our names, one by one.” It almost seems like she is being called into a torture chamber. I think she is being a bit overdramatic at this point.
  10. 10. “I was very scared, mostly of the pain they said I might feel. With the counselor, I mostly cried. But she just agreed with everyone I had talked to. Yes, this is a bad time to have a child. Yes, you’re too young. Yes, having a child costs a lot of money. Yes, it would be so hard for you to raise a child on your own. Yes, this is the best thing to do.”  Deconstruction: Colleen seems to feel so sorry for herself at this point in the narrative. She seems to just keep coming up with more reasons why she felt pressured to have the abortion. I am a bit perplexed though because before she was in this predicament, she seemed to have a mind of her own – always defying her parents and doing what she wanted. When she became pregnant however, she seemed to have lost the ability to think and just became a puppet and listened to what others told her. I just don’t buy it. I think she is looking to blame everyone except herself for her decision.
  11. 11. “Waiting to have my name called, I tried to convince myself of these things. I just wanted the whole thing to be over with. Finally they called me in and put me on a table. The dilation was extremely painful. A counselor held my hand and told me not to cry, it would be over soon.”  Deconstruction: At this point Colleen resorts to being a child and needing her hand held. I think she wants her readers to feel that she was very innocent. It seems like Colleen pushed her mother away and tried to act like an adult, but actually may have needed her mother at this time but was not mature enough to ask her mother to be a part of this process.
  12. 12. “The suction machine was very loud – a horrible noise. They had a picture on the ceiling for you to look at so you wouldn’t have to think about what was happening to you. The image of that picture is burned into my memory. They took my baby from me while I looked at people walking in the rain.”  Deconstruction: At this point, I think it’s interesting that Colleen uses the pronoun “you” and not “me” – all of a sudden she stops making it personal. The point that she remembers the picture – not the feelings she had at that point, not the boyfriend that let her down, not the decisions she made against her parents’ wishes – is a bit strange. She turns something (the abortion) so complex into something simple (they took the baby away from me). I also think this may be one of the first times that she refers to it as a baby and not an it. Once it was out of her body it was a baby, but when it was in her it was an it.
  13. 13. “My boyfriend got drunk while I was in the clinic. He could hardly drive me home. He was late picking me up and I stood on the corner in front of the clinic, bleeding and embarrassed until he came. When we got back to my dorm room, I was crying. I told everyone how awful it was, and how I wished I hadn’t done it after all. My boyfriend laughed at me – laughed at me! – and said, “Well, that’s what you get for screwing around!” One of the guys from school tried to throw him out, and they got into a fight. It was a horrible scene. I’m sure he got drunk to try and deal with it; he knew, deep down, that it was wrong. He was only trying to blame me for it so the responsibility for it wouldn’t weigh on his shoulders.”  Deconstruction: Why did Colleen get into the car with her drunken boyfriend? Are we supposed to feel bad for her and realize that she no longer treasured her life? I think her word choice “bleeding and embarrassed” shows that she wanted to be invisible but just a few paragraphs ago she complained because she was invisible and no one was in her face about the abortion. She just can’t make up her mind! At this point she really paints a bad picture of her boyfriend. If he is so horrible, then why did she marry him later? Is Colleen saying that her boyfriend was trying to blame her for the abortion while at the same time she was blaming him?
  14. 14. “In the end, the abortion did not “solve all my problems” as everyone had promised. My parents still kicked me out. I had to quit school. I married the boyfriend. It didn’t work out. He became an alcoholic and a drug addict. He beat me up and brought other women into our bed.”  Deconstruction: Colleen is always portraying herself as the victim. It’s really getting a bit out of control. Everything seems to happen to her. She tried to word everything to show she is not in control of anything. I wonder why her parents really threw her out. Also, why did she marry her boyfriend? That was a ridiculous decision on her part. He was a mess before they got married. Why did she think he would change? She seems a bit dramatic – he was an alcoholic and drug addict, he beat her up, and cheated on her. I am sure there is more to the story than all of this and I wonder why Colleen doesn’t share it with her reader.
  15. 15. “One night during a drunken spree, he held a knife to my chest. I told him to kill me, that I wanted to die. I had nothing. No parents, no husband, really, no baby, and no self-respect. How could he respect me? I had killed our child. How could I look at myself in the mirror every day? I was a murderer. I truly wanted to die. Soon after this, we were separated and divorced.”  Deconstruction: Colleen really sounds desperate here. It seems she wants us to believe that that one decision to have the abortion led to having a knife held to her chest. Did Colleen really believe she was worthless or is she just trying to get sympathy from her reader?
  16. 16. “My abortion was about ten years ago. To me, it’s like a bad, bad nightmare, deep in the past, best forgotten. I still haven’t told anyone in my present life (my husband, my church friends, anyone I respect) about the abortion. I can’t. I know that they would see me differently, and I couldn’t stand that.”  Deconstruction: Colleen notes that she wants to forget that part of her life, but it seems like she blames it for everything. She has to do one or the other. Also, I don’t get why she hasn’t told anyone. Is she ashamed of what she did? The whole time she told us that others forced her into the decision. Does she think that others won’t believe that? Does she think they will think less of her? It seems like she doesn’t tell the truth because she knows she is partly at fault for what happened to her in her life. Also, I think that she is not giving those in her life today any credit. If they love her then they will accept everything about her. Having an abortion is not a crime. Why does she write her story like it is?
  17. 17. “I’ve had one child since then, and I’m pregnant again. These children are my joy — and my forgiveness from God. My little boy is so, so precious and wonderful. If I had only known how sweet and wonderful a baby is, I never would have done it – not in 2 million years.”  Deconstruction: I’m glad Colleen is happy with her children but the whole “forgiveness from God” is a bit too much. Does she really think that the God she believes in would need to forgive her? I also think she is a bit delusional here. She says that she didn’t know that babies were “sweet” and “wonderful.” Did she live under a rock? She had never seen a baby or heard anyone gush over a newborn? I think this paragraph is a bit bizarre. Colleen seems to say she needs forgiveness for something that was beyond her control, or does she actually know it was within her control but cannot bring herself to say it.
  18. 18. “I now picket the clinics in the area, and I write letters to the paper and give money to pro-life groups. This helps a little — I feel that I need to do at least this much. It’s obvious that the abortion wrecked my life. Emotionally, I was a different person before and after it. It left a path of destruction in my life. My family, my first marriage, my image of myself – all a total wreck. Nothing will ever be the same.”  Deconstruction: I don’t understand how the abortion “wrecked her life” – she is happily married, has one child, and another one on the way. Is her life hell now? I don’t think so. I agree that she had some tough times in her life, but I don’t think that the abortion “left a path of destruction.” I think that Colleen made some poor choices like marrying her boyfriend and disobeying her parents. I don’t understand what she means by “Nothing will ever be the same.” What does she want the same? She was eighteen back then and now she is twenty-eight. Of course life is different now.
  19. 19. “I know now the lies I was told, the truths that were withheld from me, the facts that were glossed over or left out. As a pregnant woman, I go to my doctor’s office and see pictures of babies in tummies. Month by month, I hear my baby’s heartbeat. I’m told how to do everything that’s best for my baby’s health. Why is it legal across town to NOT tell these things?”  Deconstruction: Doesn’t Colleen remember that she sought out her friend’s doctor and didn’t go to her own doctor or ask her mother for help? Colleen tried to hide her pregnancy back then. She didn’t welcome the pregnancy. Of course now that she is older and married she welcomes having a child and she treats the experience differently. Doesn’t she see that? The word “legal” is also an issue. Is she talking about her experience at the clinic? Didn’t she go there to get an abortion? Why would they let her hear her baby’s heartbeat is she was going to terminate the pregnancy?
  20. 20.  “I am just glad that I’m able to tell others. I’m glad that I can be outside that clinic when no one was there for me. I may not be able to confess my abortion, but I can fight abortion!” Deconstruction: Wait a minute! Colleen can tell her story to people she doesn’t know by writing it down but she can’t tell those who are supposed to love her? There is something wrong with that. I think that the idea that she is happy to be outside clinics and picket when others go in to have abortions is a bit extreme. How about educating young girls regarding safe sex and not making them feel horrible about themselves when they go to the clinic? She wants to fight abortions but she can’t even take responsibility for having one. I think Colleen still doesn’t see the truth. I feel that she is trying to blame everyone except herself for the mess she got herself into when she was younger. Colleen is looking for a scapegoat. She has not taken responsibility for her actions. She is a shallow woman who feels that her life was ruined because others didn’t come to help her in her time of need. She forgets that she was a strongwilled young woman who tried to trick her parents and made promised that she never meant to keep.
  21. 21.  In this PowerPoint I separated the text and my deconstruction of each section so you could read my thought process throughout the narrative.  When you write your deconstruction/analysis, you will need to quotes from the initial text into your assignment and not separate the text from your ideas.

×