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Gathering Text from the Classics
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Capturing text from the Gutenberg Project archives Beginners level knowledge of Microsoft Word and Internet Explorer. Microsoft Word 97 or higher Internet Explorer 5.0 or higher None
Sometimes we want to take a selection of text from one of our books and use it as a basis for a worksheet or student activity. If the text was written BEFORE 1923, it may be available online, posted voluntarily as part of the Gutenberg Project. “What books will I find in Project Gutenberg?
We cannot publish any texts still in copyright. This generally means that our texts are taken from books published pre1923. (It's more complicated than that, as our Copyright Page explains, but 1923 is a good first ruleofthumb for the U.S.A.) So you won't find the latest bestsellers or modern computer books here. You will find the classic books from the start of this century and previous centuries, from authors like Shakespeare, Poe, Dante, as well as well loved favorites like the Sherlock Holmes stories by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, the Tarzan and Mars books of Edgar Rice Burroughs, Alice's adventures in Wonderland as told by Lewis Carroll, and thousands of others.”
This session will take you to the project, teach you to search for literature you may teach, and then help you collect that text into local documents. A sample will be used from Pudd’nhead Wilson, Chapter One, “Pudd’nhead wins his name” as an example of how a teacher might begin developing a unit based on the use of nicknames. Handouts: 1. Pudd’nhead Wilson by Mark Twain….CHAPTER 1 Pudd'nhead Wins His Name 2. Teaching Procedure: What’s in a Name. 3. About Project Gutenberg
Teaching Procedure Activity 1: What's in a Name? 1. Tell students that they are going to read a selection of chapters from Pudd’nhead Wilson, a book published by Mark Twain. Explain that "Mark Twain" is the pen name or pseudonym of Samuel Langhorne Clemens (1835-1910). Clemens grew up in Missouri, was briefly a printer and then a Mississippi River steamboat pilot, but when the Civil War closed the river to transportation Clemens was forced to find other work. After a brief stint in the Confederate Army he headed West with his Unionist brother, Orion, who was the newly appointed secretary of the Nevada territories. In 1863, while writing for the Territorial Enterprise, he first signed a piece of writing "Mark Twain." 2. Ask students to experiment with the many reasons for why Clemens might have chosen the pseudonym "Mark Twain." What are the various connotations of the word "mark" for example? The usual explanation for his choice is that it derived from a term used by riverboat men to measure the depth of the waters — mark twain meaning "two fathoms deep." 3. Discuss with students the different terms we use for authors who write under an assumed name such as: • Pen name • Nom de plume • a.k.a.(also known as) • Pseudonym • Persona. Persona is a bit different from the other terms. Webster's Collegiate Dictionary defines it as "a character assumed by an author in a written work; the personality that a person [here a writer] projects in public; image." 4. Now ask students why an author might choose to write under an assumed name. Tell students that often writers who do so never divulge their true identities. Why might this be the case? Clemens, however, delighted in being known as Mark Twain, America's first celebrity writer. 5. Now go to "Mark Twain in His Times," a Web site at the University of Virginia at http://etext.lib.virginia.edu/railton/index2.html. Click on the box "Sam Clemens as Mark Twain" and then on "Yours Truly." (You can go to this page directly at http://etext.lib.virginia.edu/railton/sc_as_mt/yrstruly.html.) Print out the page of Clemens/Twain signatures, make copies and distribute them, or use one copy and make an overhead with it. (If students can use computers, or if you can project what is on yours, click each signature for a further discussion of its use in a particular document.) Ask the class to comment on the variety of names, signatures, and penmanship styles used by the author. 6. Now pass out sheets of paper on which students can write the variety of ways they sign their names. Do they sometimes use just initials? A nickname? When if ever do they use a middle name? Have they experimented with writing their name as a graffiti "tag"? Have they ever had their initials monogrammed?
7. You can ask a variety of questions as students share or experiment with different ways to write their names, such as:
• • • What are the origins of their nicknames? Are there family stories attached to them? Have some students discarded their nicknames as they have grown older, or added new ones? Can students remember a fictional character who has assumed a variety of names over the course of a novel (e.g. Frankie in McCuller's The Member of the Wedding)? What do these changing names represent? Does everyone call each of us the same thing at all times? Do parents have special names they call children in private? Do boyfriends and girlfriends have pet names for each other? Do formal settings require us to use one name over another? Who are we in each of these settings? Are we the same "person"?
Pudd’nhead Wilson by Mark Twain….
CHAPTER 1 Pudd'nhead Wins His Name ======================================================= In that same month of February, Dawson's Landing gained a new citizen. This was Mr. David Wilson, a young fellow of Scotch parentage. He had wandered to this remote region from his birthplace in the interior of the State of New York, to seek his fortune. He was twenty-five years old, college bred, and had finished a post-college course in an Eastern law school a couple of years before. He was a homely, freckled, sandy-haired young fellow, with an intelligent blue eye that had frankness and comradeship in it and a covert twinkle of a pleasant sort. But for an unfortunate remark of his, he would no doubt have entered at once upon a successful career at Dawson's Landing. But he made his fatal remark the first day he spent in the village, and it "gaged" him. He had just made the acquaintance of a group of citizens when an invisible dog began to yelp and snarl and howl and make himself very comprehensively disagreeable, whereupon young Wilson said, much as one who is thinking aloud: "I wish I owned half of that dog." "Why?" somebody asked. "Because I would kill my half." The group searched his face with curiosity, with anxiety even, but found no light there, no expression that they could read. They fell away from him as from something uncanny, and went into privacy to discuss him. One said: "'Pears to be a fool." "'Pears?" said another. "_Is,_ I reckon you better say." "Said he wished he owned _half_ of the dog, the idiot," said a third. "What did he reckon would become of the other half if he killed his half? Do you reckon he thought it would live?" "Why, he must have thought it, unless he IS the downrightest fool in the world; because if he hadn't thought it, he would have wanted to own the whole dog, knowing that if he killed his half and the other half died, he would be responsible for that half just the same as if he had killed that half instead of his own. Don't it look that way to you, gents?" "Yes, it does. If he owned one half of the general dog, it would be so; if he owned one end of the dog and another person owned the other end, it would be so, just the same; particularly in the first case, because if you kill one half of a general dog, there ain't any man that can tell whose half it was; but if he owned one end of the dog, maybe he could kill his end of it and--"
"No, he couldn't either; he couldn't and not be responsible if the other end died, which it would. In my opinion that man ain't in his right mind." "In my opinion he hain't _got_ any mind." No. 3 said: "Well, he's a lummox, anyway." That's what he is;" said No. 4. "He's a labrick--just a Simon-pure labrick, if there was one." "Yes, sir, he's a dam fool. That's the way I put him up," said No. 5. "Anybody can think different that wants to, but those are my sentiments." "I'm with you, gentlemen," said No. 6. "Perfect jackass--yes, and it ain't going too far to say he is a pudd'nhead. If he ain't a pudd'nhead, I ain't no judge, that's all." Mr. Wilson stood elected. The incident was told all over the town, and gravely discussed by everybody. Within a week he had lost his first name; Pudd'nhead took its place. In time he came to be liked, and well liked too; but by that time the nickname had got well stuck on, and it stayed. That first day's verdict made him a fool, and he was not able to get it set aside, or even modified. The nickname soon ceased to carry any harsh or unfriendly feeling with it, but it held its place, and was to continue to hold its place for twenty long years.
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