Tobias Wolff Boarding School Essay

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While attending a boarding school, and accepting the “prep school” association with my life I read the novel Old School by Tobias Wolff. The novel is a story told by an unnamed narrator regarding the events, conflicts and struggles of going to school in an academically competitive environment. The student body is so focused on academics that regularly throughout the year students write poems and stories in attempts to win a chance to meet famous authors such as Robert Frost and Ayn Rand. This novel has gotten me excited about writing and discovering different authors much like the students in the novel. At one point in the novel the school announced that they are bringing Ernest Hemingway to the school, and that one student, with the best written piece, will be selected to meet with him in private to converse. The narrator had previously noted that Hemingway was his favorite writer, therefor he planned to put in many hours into his story. However, the narrator gets a mental block and is unable to produce any strong ideas. This results in the narrator plagiarizing the work of another student in his desperation to receive a private audience with Hemingway. He becomes so wrapped up in the story…show more content…
Throughout his time at the school he has told many stories about his time in the war as an ambulance driver, many stories much like those of Hemingway. Student at the school then start a rumor where they believe that the Dean knows Hemingway personally. The Dean never states that he does not, but rather goes with it to be better liked by the students. When the narrator is in his office after his plagiarism is discovered the Dean states that he cannot kick him out because he, the Dean, also has been lying, and it would be too hypocritical to instill punishment on a student for similar actions as himself. At this point both the Dean and the narrator leave the

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