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Wu Ting
How would you interpret this phrase? Harrison W. Shepherd is that twentieth-century phenomenon—the international Communist. He has vehemently shunned publicity, but thanks to a persistent campaign of public exposure his ties with Mexican Communists have lately come to light. His life has been obscure but hardly small, as thousands of Americans were drawn into his message, particularly the young and impressionable as his writings pressed their way even into children’s schoolrooms. How would you interpret this phrase “thousands of Americans were drawn into his message”? By the way, how would you interpret the adjective “small” in preceding phrase “His life has been obscure but hardly small”? PS: The man called Harrison W. Shepherd was a novelist and kept communicating with his readers through letters. Thanks. And this excerpt is taken from The Lacuna by Kingsolver.I guess the word “small” describes his social circle, right?
Jun 25, 2015 2:55 AM
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Answers · 2
The idea that thousands of Americans felt a similar way to the point of his message would explain his draw. Many people have thoughts that are alike but it takes someone well known or published to say it publicly to galvanize an idea into a movement. To say that his life was hardly small is merely stating that though he may be largely unknown, he lived a full life and was active in his endeavours. Well enough, perhaps to be known in informed circles.
June 25, 2015
thousands of Americans were drawn into his message - thousands of Americans paid attention to his tellings or story. obscure meaning is uncertain. The line is actually telling, he lived a private life, but because of thousands paid attention to his story, his life became public. hope this helps!
June 25, 2015
Wu Ting
Language Skills
Chinese (Mandarin), English, French
Learning Language
English