Answer Key: Aphorisms

Lesson Plan:  “Where Epics Fail: Aphorisms Hold Multitudes of Meaning”

II. While Reading: Word Inference

  1. philosophy |fəˈläsəfē| noun (pl. philosophies) the study of the fundamental nature of knowledge, reality, and existence, especially when considered as an academic discipline. See also natural philosophy.
  2. illuminate |iˈlo͞oməˌnāt| verb-(usu. as adj. illuminating) help to clarify or explain (a subject or matter): a most illuminating discussion.
  3. archaic |ärˈkāik| adjective-very old or old-fashioned: prisons are run on archaic methods.
  4. aspire əˈspī(ə)r| verb [ no obj. ] direct one’s hopes or ambitions toward achieving something: we never thought that we might aspire to those heights | [ with infinitive ] : other people will aspire to be like you.
  5. narrative |ˈnerədiv| noun-the narrated part or parts of a literary work, as distinct from dialogue.
  6. epigram |ˈepəˌɡram| noun-a pithy saying or remark expressing an idea in a clever and amusing way.
  7. deceptively |dəˈseptəvlē| adverb [ usu. as submodifier ] in a way or to an extent that gives a misleading impression.
  8. liberate |ˈlibəˌrāt| verbrelease (someone) from a state or situation that limits freedom of thought or behavior: the use of computers can liberate students from the constraints of disabilities | (as adj. liberating) : the arts can have a liberating effect on people.
  9. Wit |wit| noun-a natural aptitude for using words and ideas in a quick and inventive way to create humor: a player with a sharp tongue and a quick wit.
  10. polarize |ˈpōləˌrīz| verb -divide or cause to divide into two sharply contrasting groups or sets of opinions or beliefs: [ no obj. ] : the cultural sphere has polarized into two competing ideological positions | [ with obj. ] : Vietnam polarized political opinion.

Source: New Oxford American Dictionary

Reading Comprehension: Fill-ins

The other aphorisms in Where Epics Fail exhort us to pay attention, believe we can make a difference, keep our hearts open in the face of pain, take responsibility for our actions, avoid ego and do the hard work that comes with sticking to ideals.

 Grammar Focus: Word -Recognition

But many of Lababadi’s poems feel more personal than they do philosophical, addressing head on the concerns of being an immigrant and feeling like you’re living in a state of exile. In his poem Speaking American, Lababidi writes about struggling to fit in after immigrating to the United States.