Spider Man and the Bible

Our reading program started with the bible and meandered to philosophy and other types of literature. Then I read this article about Stan Lee and we're changing back...

Spider Man and the Bible

Somewhere around issue #2 I outlined our 8th grade writing program. My idea was to start with Jewish scriptures because it captures all of the foundational themes of western literature, is the basis for democracy, and provides a lot of great life lessons for a teenager. We're not Jewish and this reading program requires extra effort. We strayed from the course.

Recently, this article about Stan Lee came across my news feed: Stan Lee Gave Comic Books Permission to be More Jewish. It is well known that DC comic books had one dimensional characters and Marvel introduced more complexity, like the teen age angst, humor, and sassiness of Spider Man. The article describes these traits as Jewish. I wouldn't know. But its obvious to me that Spider Man has a lot in common with biblical characters, as do the rest of the Marvel Universe.

It's worse than that

In the 1st century, the Jewish leadership decided that all Jewish children would learn to read by mandate, and they had literature to work with. The rest of world history has been continually impacted by this decision. Do other cultures write as much? Maybe my culture the Irish when we take a break from talking. In the United States, I am just now seeing a bit of writing coming from the Indian and Chinese cultures, but there's still a lot of 1st generation STEM immigration producing second generation STEM students.

It's pretty obvious that a large portion of the best script writing is either from Jewish authors or influenced by Jewish authors. Historical and bigoted criticism misinterpreted their success as following the money. This line of bigotry states that wealthy people pay their way into gifted programs. A more accurate and intelligent interpretation is that super intelligence - the kind that comes from early reading and hard work usually produces high salaries and educated offspring. Good for them.

I lost this article, and to find it searched for 'Jewish news Spider Man'. Try it. There is a lot of Jewish news. Boy do they write a lot. According to this unscientific study, 47% of Jewish adults write for news organizations, probably part time.

What about STEM?

I found out about the 1st century reading mandate when my oldest was a toddler. We used Pre-K Phonics and Conceptual Vocabulary and made heavy reading part of our At Home culture. Since all cognitive skills are present in the process of learning to read (known since 1915), the result of out over-the-top reading program has been extraordinary math skills. Common Core has shifted math requirements to the verbal side as well.

When I was in graduate school, I stopped by a Jewish professor's house to have a meeting one night. He took a break to read the Hobbit to his 4 year old daughter - part of their bed time routine. It was a great experience, and I decided that I would steal from every culture when I found something worth stealing. I have gems from India, China, Africa and every place south of El Paso to share later. This is what it means to be American - to misappropriate other cultures. I'll share these other gems later.

We're not short cutting STEM in this house. But STEM isn't a path to leadership without strong verbal skills, and the CEO suite requires the ability to tell stories on top of regular communication skills.

On the other hand, most of the competition is in STEM. As I think about the fastest and easiest way to get to the top, I'm thinking about writing. A 1600 on the SAT is no longer a path to college. At 1550 with a few published papers or literary competitions on the other hand is a winner. I'm starting to look in this direction.

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