Read an essay, analyze the ideas, and write a paper using your analysis to bring the text to a new light. It's a three-step process in which I have become more than familiar with over the course of this semester. As a critical reader, you develop appreciation for certain aspects of literature that you favor to read. Whether it's the style in which ideas are presented, the organization of text, or the ideas itself, all literature contain characteristics that make it unique or just flat out likeable. These characteristics vary from author to author. Like a fingerprint, it's what makes them unique. Regarding the essays that I have read this semester, two authors stick out like a sore thumb when considering the development of their ideas from beginning to end and how it makes them unique. Susan Bordo's "Beauty (Re) Discovers the Male Body," and Judith Butler's "Besides Oneself," discusses societal norms but with differing opinions, styles, and organization of text. .
Bordo's ideas are definitive and easy to spot. Page after page the reader is able to read along, chuckle and infer exactly what she has to say. She presents insight and interpretation from experience and history in relation to her ideas about societal norms that she explores with her readers. With a picture book like essence, she will even occasionally plug a picture next to her text that visually describes her ideas. Butler's piece on the other hand can be considered the antichrist of Bordo's writing. Her ideas are somewhat hidden, complex, and presented through language and language only; incorporating sophisticated ideas that are both theoretical and factual, as well as using complex vocabulary to paint the portrait of her ethical approach to societal norms.
Both authors discuss their ideas about societal norms revolving around self-identity and more precisely, the human body. In the beginning of her essay, Susan Bordo approaches the external body by discussing the overall appearance of one's self (in particular male models) and the judgment of others that comes hand in hand with one's physical appearance.