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Sometimes the notes I produce are filled with anger as I fail to understand authors, such as Kierkegaard or Conor Cruise O'Brien. Other comments are strong. One time i tried to imagine what kind of person would write "Don't be a ninny" in the margins of The Ife of Emily Dickinson.
Students today aren't the best at communicating with the author. Some just write one word and sometimes repeating it multiple times along the sidelines. Others will use punctuation to get their thoughts across such as exclamation points and others will write comments such as "Yes.
You should have annotated at least once already before graduating college, if not, right now is your chance. We have all written all over the margins in order to show we have put a lot of thought in the reading.
Irish monks also complained along the borders of the Gospels about the pains of copying knowing these vessels would last beyond them. You cant't completely understand someone or something until you have read others annotations and their thoughts.
One book i just can't forget was Catcher in the Rye which i borrowed from the local library. I was just beginning high school then and was very lonely till i found on one page a few greasy marks and next to them written "Pardon the egg salad stains, but I'm in love." Thatt thought still exists in my head and is very special.
The main theme of Marginalia is that books are not just books, but actually vehicles of communications. When a reader picks up a book they should not only communicate with only the thoughts of the author, but also with all the things left by previous readers.
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