the basic instruction is this: Do you agree with Murray that all writing and reading are autobiographical? Why or why not? Support your arguments with specific references to Murrays text.
In this article, Donald Murray points to the nature of autobiographyits complexity and multiplicityby including a series of direct statements (or claims) about it. Here are three such statements (italics are mine):
I publish in many formspoetry, fiction, academic article, essay, newspaper column, newsletter, textbook, juvenile nonfiction and I have even been a ghost writer for corporate and government leadersyet when I am at my writing desk I am the same person. (66)
He [Brock Dethier] answered my question, What is autobiographical in this poem? by saying, Your thinking style, your voice. Of course. (67)
We become what we write. (71)
Murray asserts that these claims apply to all of us as writersnot only to himself. To support these assertions, he takes examples of his own writing (three poems, a newspaper column, a passage from a novel, and a passage from a writing textbook) and interprets them in light of his argument.
In an essay of two to three typed, double-spaced pages (about five-hundred words, descriptively titled), evaluate Murrays claims by looking closely at several of the texts he usesas well the commentary he provides about them. What does each text (as well his commentary about it) express to you about Murray, about his preoccupations and his character, and about the ways he interprets experience and approaches the writing process (as well as the teaching of writing)? What patterns, if any, do you see in the way that he selects and interprets his textsand places them at particular points in his argument? And what does your analysis suggest to younot only about the validity of Murrays argument (i.e., that all writing is autobiography) but also about the larger implications of such an argument? What does it mean to say, [A]ll writing is autobiography? What might such an argument add to your understanding: not only of others writing but also of your own? And what does such an argument mean to you as a writer and a student at a university?
***I will be arguing that yes I agree all writing/reading are autobiographies because everything we know is related to our individual experiences***