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Peter

Snap!!!!

And you are intolerably arrogant and patronizing.

You keep asserting inconsistency.  Again:  WHERE IS THE INCONSISTENCY!!!!!!
Where is the inconsistency in Dickens' having his poor ignite brandy?  Where
is the inconsistency in Eliot having his poor eat steak?  WHERE IS THE
INCONSISTENCY?  It resides only in a perception by you and your student that
Eliot's (and Dickens') poor are not meeting your requirements for the poor.

If you are going to have your students read and rely upon the original work
before reference to critical works then they should READ the original work
and try to understand what the author put there instead of engaging upon
unfounded, uninformed and quick criticism of their own.  If your student
wants to assert that Eliot did not understand the circumstances of his
characters and that he, therefore, had a character performing out of role
then she should assert that in a reasoned and critical review of the poem.
Perhaps you could assist her with being published.  As you said her
"discovery" is novel.

You have again answered reasoned discussion with dismissal after asserting
years of classroom attendance on your part.  A Goldstar for Peter!

The student is paying a tuition for something more than your casual and
uncritical agreement with her untutored and still untested ideas.

Rick Seddon
McIntosh, NM