Someone well versed with a general principle typically doesn't have a problem telling a story around that principle, to illustrate it. We see this all the time when someone in a profession needs to explain something to someone outside that profession. It's a hard task. "Getting the gist of the general principle into the story requires identification of what that gist is. This creates an imperative for the writer or the presenter." But what happens, writes Lanny Arvan, is that students who have tested very well in reading comprehension are for some reason unable to grasp this task. He writes, "I feel more that the students are the victims than the perpetrators. I've got to keep that in mind as I teach. Yet I also have to wonder how we can so neglect their intellectual development, including the best and the brightest of them." Related: How to tell a story by Scott Simon.
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