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In this essay, the writer explains that in the small, West Virginia coal mining town of Homer Hickman's novel "October Sky", most of the people of the town aspire to be equally as uniform in their interests and talents as the black spheres of coal harvested from the town's mines. The writer maintains that the book is testimony to the fact that no individual exists in isolation and the positive reinforcement of like-minded individuals is important. The writer points out that the book pays homage to the bravery of the miners, and to their wives who must say farewell to them, every time they leave for work. However, the writer concludes that community sentiment must not become stifling, and like the scientific community of the school, the influence of other people must spur on achievement, rather than stymie it into accepted, outmoded norms and roles.
From the Paper:"Part of the credit for Homer's eventual, future success in science may be credited to his teachers. Even today, many educators complain that it is difficult to encourage young women to defy gender stereotypes explore their interest in the sciences. How much more so in 1957, when the book is set! One of Homer's favorite teachers, Miss Riley has defied all expectations and become a female science instructor. She encourages her ambitious pupils to similarly challenge all existing paradigms of what life for a young, intelligent boy in Coalwood should resemble. Miss Riley is in charge of the science projects at the school, and encourages Homer and his friends to shoot for the moon, no pun intended, when they work upon their ambitious rocket projects at school, and for the science fair."
Sample of Sources Used:
- Hickman, Homer. October Sky. New York: Delta, 2000.
Cite this Book Review:
October Sky (2007, September 24) Retrieved April 22, 2021, from https://www.academon.com/book-review/october-sky-98424/
"October Sky" 24 September 2007. Web. 22 April. 2021. <https://www.academon.com/book-review/october-sky-98424/>