Voltaire flair

Larissa Hernandez

Words of wit fill the pages of sophomore Honors English students as they are assigned to create their own Voltaire-inspired satires. After reading Voltaire’s Candide, Ms. Kasner’s and Ms. Hill’s students were given the opportunity to poke fun at society’s flaws. Internet fads, low performing school districts and adolescent stereotypes were just a few topics that were used as inspirations.
The Avocado, written by Rebekah Jin, is a sarcastic How-To on social networking sites. To add humor to the instructional article, Jin included grammar mistakes on purpose to show how the internet has influenced young people to use abbreviations as opposed to proper English.
Jin also spotlights the idea that the majority of people have an account on most websites and how it’s an oddity when one is not a member of them.
“As soon as I’m finished with my studies, I head to the computer to update my status and see my friends’ statuses too,” Jin said.
Jin believes that everyone talks to their friends online now as opposed to in person before the website trend began.
Another satire, The Super Amazing School, written by Gustavo Ramirez, criticizes “Frowney” High School’s much needed reforms.
Ramirez gained the idea from walking on campus to his sixth period class to realize how much garbage there was around him.
“It bothered and annoyed me how dirty the school is,” Ramirez said.
Ramirez also criticizes the priorities of teachers and students.
“Some students don’t care or pay attention, the teachers don’t either,” Ramirez said.
Ashley Aragon’s satire, Dr. Bee S’s Advice Column, gives advice to the stereotyped personalities that can be found at any high school: The Common Bully, The Common Gangster, and the Common Hater. Aragon mocks these personalities by giving them absurd advice.
“I used to live in a lower class neighborhood and was surrounded by these personalities,” Aragon said.
Aragon’s personal experiences were a heavy influence into her writing process.
“This assignment was fun. I liked that I could write about whatever I want and sound intelligent as well,” Aragon said.
Whether being inspired by their English teachers, or Voltaire, the students that participated in the assignment were allowed to search for their own voice and point of views. Their satires show ample amounts of hard work and creativity. Ms. Kasner’s and Ms. Hill’s assignment has opened the eyes of their students and inspired them to be opinionated and open-minded