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I think that this essay is a great example of how the mindset of an audience can impact how they view an essay, a poem, a novel, or any other piece of literature.
In reading this essay the first time, my own preconceptions really got in the way. I would consider myself to be a fairly neat person, so I found myself taking offense to some of what Suzanne Britt was saying about neat people. From the very beginning, I felt like Britt was unfairly attacking neat people. For example, in the third sentence of the essay, Britt states “Neat people are lazier and meaner than other people”(Britt, 225). Just reading this sentence, my entire view of the essay was colored as I struggled to overcome my feeling offended by what she was saying. I was taking her words to heart and comparing my own personality to the one that she attributes to neat people. One particular example was when Britt states “Neat people are bums and clods at heart. They have cavalier attitudes towards possessions…Neat people will toy with the idea of throwing the children out of the house just to cut down on clutter”(Britt, 226). I couldn’t help but wonder what Britt’s point was in this essay. She praises sloppy people and bashes neat people. Perhaps she knew someone in her life who wronged her at some point and was a “neat” person. I felt that this might be a potential reason as to why she was so vitriolic against neat people.
A few days later, I reread the essay; however, and really took in the comments that the editor or author of the book had made about the essay. “Mingling humor with seriousness…Britt uses comparison mainly to entertain by showing us aspects of ourselves, awful or not”(Kennedy, Kennedy, and Aaron, 225). This description was helpful in that I was able to drop my preconceptions and read it in a new way. I was able to view the sarcasm and humor within the piece. I realized that the extreme descriptions of the neat people and sloppy
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8 Pages(2000 words)Personal Statement
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