How to Read Like a Professor

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Alexis Carino
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Chapter One: Every Trip is a Quest (Except When It’s Not)

In the opening chapter of Thomas C. Foster’s book, he explains the importance of a Quest. It is quite hard to figure out a quest, Foster explains that in an example about a young boy who goes to the supermarket and encounters his “nemesis.” Quests are the core base of a story since it involves just about everything a story is trying to portray. For example it includes the quester, a place to go, a stated reason to go there, challenged and trials during the journey, and a real reason to go there. These are all main components in a story. Foster states “The real reason for a quest is always self-knowledge.” He means that the Quest is to help the protagonist evolve as a person. Even the simplest daily activities of the protagonist could lead to something that is tied to the real reason to go to the final destination of the quest.

Chapter Nine: It’s Greek to Me

All of the ancient myths (including all three types, Shakespearean, biblical, and folk/fairy tale) can be used as correspondences for modern writers to add depth to their writings. The main point that Foster is trying to propose is that myth is a body of story that matters (as he said in bold). This means that every community owns it’s own type of myth belief system. Myths can be in different forms in literature, paintings, and music. All of these forms tell a story, even though it is difficult to notice the story it is trying to tell. The literature form of myths is used by modern writers because the situations between the myths and the modern literature writing is very much alike. These comparisons are parallels, but how the myths are used and written in the modern world are ironized. A lot of the important events in novels can be factored down to myths.

Chapter 10: It’s More Than Just Rain or Snow

In this chapter, Foster explains the deeper meaning to the whether. Even though...
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