Satire on Reading an Article

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The article “Girl Moved To Tears By ‘Of Mice and Men’ Cliffs Notes” from The Onion is a satirical passage criticizing students and the way they read assigned novels; by not actually reading it but by looking at someone else’s notes on it. The literary element of satire uses irony, sarcasm, parody, hyperbole, or other methods of ridicule and humor that criticizes, but also attempts to improve human institutions or human follies. In this article, the use of situational irony is used to support the satire by making it appear as if the character, Grace Weaver, has actually read the book but in reality has not. The way that Weaver reacts to the cliffs notes about Of Mice and Men by Steinbeck, one would usually expect that she read through the novel and not only understood it but connected to it. However, Weaver did not read the novel at all and only read through cliffs notes of it. In the article Weaver says “I’m also going to find that book about rabbits that George was always reading to Lennie, so that I can really understand that important allusion.” The irony in this statement that Weaver makes is extremely evident to the whole satirical aspect of this article. Weaver wants to learn more about the story; to get more in depth, but the option of actually reading the novel isn’t there in her mind. She thinks of other things to do to get a better understanding of the book, but the best option she doesn’t think of; reading the book. Weaver’s professor says in the article after knowing that Weaver chose to read cliffs notes instead of the novel, “I look forward to skimming her essay on the importance of following your dreams and randomly assigning it a grade.” This quote shows that Weaver is not, necessarily, going to get a good grade on the assignment because she never actually read through the book and so doesn’t really know what it’s about. The satire of the article criticizes the way students choose to do book projects, but then attempts to reform that folly by...
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