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Hannah G.
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Although I thoroughly Beloved, I am ready to embrace a new novel. I began reading God of Small Things last night. I am not even through the first chapter, but I can already tell I am going to enjoy it. Roy's imagery is eloquent and clear, I can really visualize his descriptions, and his sentences flow beautifully. However, the first chapter is a flashback, complicating the storyline from the beginning, it is slightly challenging to grasp. But, there is one aspect that has already gotten me thinking of how it will play out through the novel, and allowed me to... Continue reading
What really fascinates me about the novel, Beloved is the strong sense of community associated with the inhabitants.The Cincinnati community, of which both Sethe and Denver both become members, is not just about bonding close relationships with others in the community, it is about survival. Along with the core premise of survival, Sethe and Denver alike go through the process of self discovery in the Cincinnati community. Although, not only pleasant things or ideas arise from communities, the communities in Beloved especially. Because a community is so tightly-knit and collective, the differing of ideas and opinions seem seldom. The African... Continue reading
Sethe has had an extremely difficult life. Being a slave for 18 years, having her family dying and being dysfunctional, and, the small aspect of her being haunted by her dead infant. The labors of her life are shown on her body through scars, these are the only memories that she cannot suppress from Denver, for whom she protects from everything else. It was really interesting when Paul D, who lusted after Sethe, kissed the scars on her breasts, and the whole house shook because of the temper of Beloved. This really showed how Sethe cannot, under any circumstances think... Continue reading
The element of the Brady essay that I liked the most was the way she showed the interrelation of the themes of individual guilt and self-deception and collective responsibility and deception regarding colonial exploitation. One of the things that makes the novel so compelling is the way it shows its characters not only as part of their own immediate circle of associates, but also how they function within larger societal and global forces. Marlow's and Kurtz's private concerns and obsessions fit coherently within the world situation that it depicts through them. Continue reading
One of the things that really strikes me with Faulkner is the effect on the reader of his narrative style. Unlike third-person omniscient narration, which tends to make the world of the novel seem an ordered whole, Faulkner's technique of relating the story through a kind of collage of the perspectives of the various characters keeps the reader off balance and makes the world he depicts in the book seem less stable and coherent. There is no all-knowing narrator that serves the reader as a kind of anchor and final guarantee of stability. All the reader has is the incomplete... Continue reading
In Chapter 4, when Brown is being interrogated by the police and reveals to them that Christmas is of mixed race, he relates that Christmas had been passing himself off as a foreigner in order to conceal the fact that he he was half African-American. Brown tells the police that he saw through this pretense immediately, remarking with tremendous irony that "soon as I watched him three days I knew he wasn't no more a foreigner than I am." This is interesting and ironic because it is a way of saying that Christmas is every bit as American as Brown... Continue reading
I never have been particularly struck by poetry during my High School career. But there is something about Sonnet 116 by Shakespeare that I really like. Shakespeare's use of redundancy is very prevalent in this poem. He suggests that love would be nothing if it did not constitute a point of distinction to a point of change around it. Throughout the poem, all he really can say love is an "ever-fixed mark", and just states what love is not to narrow down what it can be labled as. At the end of the poem the reader and Shakespeare both come... Continue reading
The farther I got into The Tempest the island on which Miranda and Prospero are forced to reside, I saw a reversed parallel between the island and the Garden of Eden. Prospero very well can represent a God-like figure, for he is filled with powers and rules the island. But the reversal aspect of this parallel, is that in a sense Prospero was rejected from the "real world" that is political and strict, and cast into the magical world of the island. The similarity of the mystical aspect of the island and the Garden of Eden, are easily interpreted, but... Continue reading
After finishing a novel, I always like to reread the first chapter and pick up subtle hints dropped by the narrator which I was previously unaware of. This was harder to do in Billy Budd, but Melville didnt dissapoint. When Billy Budd had just been informed that he was going to be changing ships, he does not protest, " any demur would have been as idle as the protest of a goldfinch popped into a cage" (Melville 45). This quote compares Billy Budd to the goldfinch in different ways. A goldfinch is a very beautiful and appealing animal, just as... Continue reading
My initial response to the final sentence of the novel was complete confusion. The novel ends, "For everything to be consummated, for me to feel less alone, I had only to wish that there be a large crowd of spectators the day of my execution and that they greet me with cries of hate." (Camus 123.) How could Meursault consider being an object of hatred preferable to and less lonely than the state of indifference to that world that he had been in previously? Then I realized that this deeply ironic statement represents Meursault's great moral breakthrough, his acceptance of... Continue reading
After finishing The Stranger, I went back over the first chapter and found some interesting clues to ideas that are developed more fully througout the book. The first one is in the first paragraph of the book: "Maman died today. Or yesterday maybe, I don't know. I got a telegram from the home: 'Mother deceased. Funeral tomorrow. Faithfully yours.' That does't mean anything. Maybe it was yesterday." What is interesting about this paragraph is the way it is structured. At the point you read "That doesn't mean anything," I think you are likely to interpret it to mean he is... Continue reading
Meursault is the opposite of my ideal person. His thoughts are merely plain observations, such as people's physical appearances, clothing, and the weather. When, on the rare occasion that his though process extends to more than obvious observations, he is extremely negative and rude and gets hung up on small details. "Almost all the women were wearing apron, and the strings, which were tied tight around their waists, made their bulging stomachs stick out even more. I'd never noticed what huge stomachs old women have." (Camus 10). His inner thoughts are awful, but the worst aspect of his personality, is... Continue reading