Is there anything familiar about Lu’s Struggle?

While reading the Lu article, a sense of familiarity overtook me. This struggle between what the school told her was true and what her parents showed her reminded me of a struggle we talked about earlier in the semester: the literacy practices of the Amish.

The article we read regarding the Amish did not talk about the views some of the young adults have if they leave the Amish community and return, but we touched on it a bit in class.

Do you think that the experiences and internal conflicts the Amish would have after leaving the community for a while and then returning would be similar to the struggle and conflict Lu discussed? If so, how? If not, why not and how do you think that the struggle or conflict would present itself?

3 thoughts on “Is there anything familiar about Lu’s Struggle?”

  1. When comparing Lu and the Amish I think the struggle would be of the same kind, however the conflicts would be very different. As in Lu, Eli Jr.’s family chooses texts to bring in the home very carefully, making sure that none of them conflict the family or Amish ideology. Eli’s mom goes as far as to research publishers if she wants to buy a book that is not at an Amish affiliated store. Lu has this same struggle when she reads a book that goes outside of the families ideology. The only difference between the two families being the book in Lu’s story was read for an assignment, which is something that Eli Jr. has not or will not face.

    As we saw in the Fishman article, literacy in the Amish is viewed differently than most of us would think of the idea of reading and writing. Critical thinking of the literature like the Bible is so much frowned upon that there would be more than a struggle if young Eli Jr. would grow up to begin questioning the bible in such a manner. The Lu family encourages critical thinking however the parents want Lu to have the same thinking behind her critical thought as them.

    Both families in the two articles have obvious similarities, which are literacy causing dismay in the family, but the basis for the struggles vary drastically.

  2. While reading the Lu article I had initially not compared it to the literacy practices of the Amish until now. For me, it seemed as if Lu has the opportunity to perform more critical thinking than the average mono linguistic person because she can consider things from two different perspectives (school and home). Yet the schooling of Lu and the Amish seem very similar now. Both are repressed to learn only what the instructor is saying, and going beyond that is punishable. The one crucial difference is that when Lu returns home, she is encouraged to think freely and form opinions. Lu finds her biggest challenges when the beliefs of her formal education cross over with that of her family. This challenge is very distinct from the one of Eli who does not recognize his capabilities.

  3. Like the comment above I had not paired the literacy practices of the Amish with Lu’s article but thanks to your post I can now make a clear connection between the two. For Lu she had to balance between her home and school life while a ex-Amish individual would have to essentially balance between two worlds. The caveat with this connection however is that for Lu her parents were knowingly aware that Lu was balancing two lives–the former Amish individual did not have that crutch. While both parties are playing a game of balance I almost think it would harder to be a former-Amish individual going back home.

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