I took a break from writing to spend some time with my family this summer. I’m tying to get back in the writing mode. During my time off, I’ve encountered an issue that I thought really hard about. When you’re in conversation with someone and discuss educational topics, do you feel proud about being educated or feel like you’re boasting about it? In my case, I’m very proud to have completed two degree programs. I have an Associate of Arts in Biology and a Bachelor of Arts in English.
I’m glad to say that it’s been a life changer ever since I finally completed my bachelor program. I’ve learned to use my degree in more ways than just writing papers. I’ve learned how to analyze people by paying closer attention to the way they say things, the content, and their body language. I was surprised at how studying different literary theories actually help in real life. People are different, just like several works of literature that require certain ways of analyzing. My favorite literary theory is “Reader Response Theory”, a theory that allows readers to understand a particular text in different ways based off of personal experience and so forth.
This works the same way with individuals in communication other than in writing. You would have to pay further attention to how people are in general. It’s just like watching a movie. You’re only able to use what you can see and hear in real life when dealing with others. In doing so, we process what we hear and see while conversing into something we are better able to understand that’s comparable to our personal experiences, prejudices, biases, etc.
Going back to the original question, I can understand how a person would think the other is boasting about having a degree. The person (William, as an example) listening to the one who obtained it (John) can be intimidated or feel not up to par. John may not mean any harm by it at all. He could be proud about his accomplishment and want to tell others about the difficult journey to get that wonderfully dressed certificate or diploma wrapped in leather.
The point of view for John resembles a great climax as if he fought a giant or several giants, depending on if you count all the classes in the curriculum. William could feel out of place in the company of John and may think he’s inadequate and not good enough.
William could determine that John is boastful and arrogant. John may not think so at all but would want William to finish his own life journey of education as to aid in support in the form of a testimony.
I think, after discussing this issue, that people react to what is said differently based on how they participated in the past with others, educational exposure, and family issues that have either positively or negatively affected them. So, this can be a very difficult subject to talk civil about if one accuses the other of arrogance and that person isn’t in the other’s shoes. Historical and biographical information should be operating in everyone’s minds in not only this case but all.