Daily Reads-2020: Article-19

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Article Title: Should writers only write what they know? What I learned from my research

Article Summary


This is an article based on art and literature, wherein the author discusses whether appropriation can be successfully done in writing. When he talks about appropriation here, he is essentially talking about how authors write about characters of other backgrounds (communities they are not part of).

The author explains the viewpoints of other authors and critics. Then he talks about how he approached this by writing a novel in three different ways, each times under a different set of assumptions. Essentially, he was trying to place himself in the shoes of others by using different techniques/assumptions. The outcomes in each case varied and on the basis of this, he came to his conclusion that it is hard to write about someone else. He thinks it is possible but it is not something one can be perfect in.

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Words to learn from this Article:

Appropriation: A deliberate act of acquisition of something, often without the permission of the owner
Stereotypes: A conventional or formulaic conception or image
Asylum: A shelter from danger or hardship
Censorship: Counterintelligence achieved by banning or deleting any information of value to the enemy/ Deleting parts of publications, correspondence or theatrical performances
Empathetic: Showing empathy or ready comprehension of others’ states

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