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Socratic Seminar

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  • Pages: 3
  • Word count: 587
  • Category: Socrates

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The Socratic Seminar attempted to address a variety of topics from the book Heart of Darkness. This particular session didn’t really gain a momentum or enthusiasm needed to open up a more detailed discussion of the book. The inner circle struggled to answer some of the targeted questions and got off to a rather slow conversational start. There was an uncomfortable silence at the beginning of the discussion. In addition, not everyone in the inner circle contributed. There should have been more input and opinion put into the conversation. Although it can be hard to think on your feet, given more reflection time there could have been more comments and conversation. Even with the slow start, it is always good to get other people’s opinions and views. The group gave many personal examples and made connections between self and book. Overall, the result was an average or mediocre job. A lengthier discussion took place when the group was asked whether or not ones environment changes the way an individual acts. Everyone in the inner circle agreed that a certain environment shift has changed the way they have acted.

Scout said that she is a completely different person at work, than she usually is. She is forced to be happy all the time when she is catering to customers, while in the back room everyone is always talking about each other. Nisarg said that he is forced to cooperate with all of the guests at the zoo where he works. He must always settle with the guest and tell them what they want to hear. Environment has a major influence on everyone just like the jungle had on Kurtz. There were many other personal connections made by people in the inner circle. Another topic that had larger discussion was whether or not the company stopped Kurtz for the Natives sake or for the reputation of the company. This particular conversation started out rather slow, but picked up after a while. Everyone agreed that the company was removing Kurtz for their sake. Everyone from the circle supported their answers with text from the book. Grace said that the company felt threatened by Kurtz- one reason why the company wanted to get rid of Kurtz.

Mike also said that the company got rid of Kurtz to keep their name well presented, and not trash it. Even with the slow start, the group was able to get the conversation flowing. Other topics that were discussed included: “What is Marlow’s purpose of telling the story? Why in first person?”, “What is the irony in the bundle of papers Marlow delivers to Kurtz ex?”, “What purpose does the Russian plan on revealing Kurtz story and him as a person?”, “Why does Kurtz hate the Congo, but never could find himself to leave?” and “ Marlow has to lie to keep the woman innocent. Have you ever lied to protect someone? Even though there was not a lot of discussion on the previously listed questions, good points were made. My question, “Has your environment ever change the way you act as an individual?” was answered adequately. There was a lot of input made by almost everyone in the inner circle. Many personal experiences were brought to the table. Even though this particular Socratic Seminar lacked a certain enthusiasm, it produced conversations using personal connections to the book, and resulted in reflection and comparison of events. Overall the Socratic seminar was a success. The book and its meaning were discussed thoroughly.

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