Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Summer reading

I am reading Gandhi’s autobiography lately. In the passed spring semester, I took the Early Indian history course by Professor Sen. Professor Sen is very knowledgeable Indian and friendly to me. I enjoyed his class very much. When I found he would teach a graduate course about Gandhi and non-violence next semester, I was attracted by this topic immediately. At the end of the spring class, I asked him to recommend a few book for me in summer reading ahead for this course. He suggested me to read Gandhi’s autobiography, The Story of My Experiments with Truth.

So far, I have already finished more than half of this book. I like it very much. The language of this book is plain. I think this attribute excellently matches Gandhi’s lifestyle, spirit, and philosophy. In this book, Gandhi portrayed his private life very briefly, but his emphasis was on how to serve the public. Gandhi was open-minded. He never tired to contact with variety of people to help him in public work. It is not because Gandhi himself had anything special, but what he did for others making him saintly. I quoted many good expressions of him on my facebook page for record. Inspiring by this excellent book, I am planning to read a few more famous books after I finish this one.

Reading New York Times articles is another summer plan for me. I try to everyday reading one. There are double benefits by doing this. First, when I read the article, I read it loudly. If I encounter unknown vocabulary, I check the dictionary to find out both the definition and pronunciation of the word. By doing this, I corrected a number of mispronounced words. Second, through reading newspapers, I become more familiar about the last happenings in the world.

Today I read an article that is about President Obama visiting Russia. I couldn’t fight out how to pronounce Russian president’s name. When I met my tutor Barry this afternoon in Flushing, I conducted him this question. After told me the correct pronounce, Barry mentioned that even President Obama could not pronounce this name. Can you believe that?


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