Archivo de la categoría: Literature

War Vocabulary Description

Our language and literature teacher, Pato Chujman, asked us to work in groups of three and gave us some articles and text to read, in order to look for war vocabulary. After we had read them, analysed them and had a decent amount of vocabulary, we wrote ten short desciptions based of off war pictures, using the vocabulary found.

This is the presentation with the war vocabulary descriptions that I did together with Josefina Catani and Delfina Nicora.

Essay Writing on “The Yellow Wallpaper”

Our literature teacher, Cecilia Lasa, asked us to work in pairs to create a statement in which we would base an essay about. This has to do with the short story we have been reading “The Yellow Wallpaper”

This is our statement: ” The writer of The Yellow Wallpaper is clearly denouncing english society in the 19th century through the transition of the protagonist”

As Salman Rushdie once said, “Literature is where I go to explore the highest and lowest places in human society and in the human spirit, where I hope to find not absolute truth but the truth of the tale, of the imagination and of the heart.” The Yellow Wallpaper explores the english society in the 19th century in depth and denounces it.

For starters, it denounces positivism which is the state or quality of being positive; definiteness; assurance. This was to big importance for society in the 19th century since everything was tested and proven with science, yet nothing was left to the emotions or beliefs if abnormal. Although some might argue that it was a big advancement for society, it restricted knowledge and thinking outside of the box or of what it is known. This is showed in this short story. The narrator and protagonist is sick, depressed, and as she tries to express her concerns to her husband he says it is a “temporary nervous depression _ a slightly hysterical tendency.” She believes him because “he is a physician of high standing” so “what can one do?” The writer uses irony as if she had no right to think she could be right because what she feels she has can not be proven with what it is studied. In fact, John is the epitome of positivism. “John does not know how much I really suffer. He knows there is no reason to suffer, and that satisfies him.”There is a paradox since he tries to help her get better but by not accepting she is sick he makes it worst.  What for men is madness for women is freedom. This short story as we know is of a gothic genre, which underlines and questions male and scientific authority.

 

That brings us to the next point which is the exposure of the role of women at that time. They were restricted in every sense: in what they said, thought and did. Emmeline Pankhurst a political activist at the time said: “Men make the moral code and they expect women to accept it. They have decided that it is entirely right and proper for men to fight for their liberties and their rights, but that it is not right and proper for women to fight for theirs.”This is portrayed continuously throughout the transition of the protagonist. There is the fact that she is forbidden to write down what she thinks and feels even though it is the only thread of sanity she has for herself. “There comes John, and I must put this away – he hates to have me write a word.” This shows literally the power that men had over women and how they got to call the shots, and shows metaphorically how women couldn’t have a mind for themselves (or at least it wasn’t the norm). The writer emphasizes the roles in their relationship as husband and wife and the contrast between the dominant and the dominated. At first we could say that the wife is as most women in the british society in the 19th century, yet as she develops she separates herself from that persona. John is left ‘weak’ and ‘desperate’ while she takes control. Her actions are skeptical and maybe ‘mad’ at the end but one could also say she is free. The story’s ending is the following “Now why should that man have fainted? But he did”. Going back to the gothic roots, John represents the characteristic ‘woman in distress’ which is very ironic and controversial. This could be a hidden message questioning the supposed superiority of men.

To conclude, it is evident that the writer of this novel criticizes some aspects in the english society of the 19th century like positivism and the role of women. It is able to do so throught the transition of the protagonist, her sickness, irony, contrast of the relationship of the husband and wife and through literary resources.

Continuum analysis

Our literature teacher, Pato Chujman, asked us to answer the following questions in order to reflect on the poem we read and analyzed in class called “Continuum”

What is a ´continuum´?

A continuum is a continuous extent, series, or whole which cannot be divided into parts.

Why did the poet entitled the poem, “Continuum”?

The poet entitled the poem continuum because the poem can’t be divided, you have to read it all together. There are enjabments that make the poem flow as a whole.

What does the poet mean by… “All poems are rash acts”?

What i interpreted from that quote is that he believes poems are improvised, they are the fruit of life’s  inspiration. You can’t create inspiration, you have to find it, therefore when you do, you can’t help but pour ideas into a poem.

What is the role of irony in the poem?

The poem is about the writer not being able to find inspiration, yet him writing the poem means that he has some inspiration.

Are there examples of personification?

An example of personification in the poem, would be the moon. The writer begins the poem by describing how the moon hide behind his house and later states “I am talking about myself.” The loneliness of the moon in the sky reflect the isolation of the thought’s in the voice’s mind.

Also, the cloud is being personified since it represents confusion and inability to create.

Is the poem the same throughout the poem?

The tone of the poem include gloomy, puzzled, dark, disturbed and blurry.. But as  the poem progresses and the voice starts to evolve, we can see his clearer mind and how he finds stability. Therefore the voice is tranquil,  settled and fruitful.

What is the effect of enjabment in the poem?

The effect of continuity, that it cannot be divided and that every though is related. Also hoe the writer/voice has a confusion in his mind, therefore, write in a disorganized way.

Explore the meaning in the final sentence/stanza?

it could be interpreted in 2 ways:

that he goes back inside, picks up his drafts and starts writing (since he got inspired by nature) and then goes to sleep. Maybe, he wrote this poem about his experience. This is the one i believe happened.

Then again, it could happen that he goes back inside, puts back his drafts into and gives up, lat going to sleep.

 

Unseen Paper: Walking Away

Our Literature teacher, Pato Chujman, asked us to choose an unseen paper from the bookleet (either a poem or a short prose) in order that we practise for the IGCSE. My unseen paper analyses the poem ‘Walking Away‘.

While reading the poem ‘Walking Away’ I’ve noticed how the author uses language, structure, and style to convey and express his feelings as he has deal with his son departure.

The speaker of this poem is a father as he watches his son walk away from him after a football game, but symbolically walks away from him in life. We can infer this since in the first stanza there is a simile that compares his son with a wandering satellite “I watched you play your first game of football, then like a satellite wrenched from its orbit, go drifting away”. This is a negative comparison since the meaning behind it is that the son is going in a different direction, towards the unknown.  This idea of following a correct path reappears in the second stanza, as the son “finds no path where the path should be.” The father has to let go of his son and let him be more independent and grow as a person, we can sympathize with him since it’s hard when this ‘protective role’ is taking away from you. The tone in the first two stanzas is reflective, nostalgic, fearful and of a sudden realization. In the last two stanzas, the tone changes into a more ‘melancholic acceptance’ since the father realizes that letting in order to let the people we love move on we have to set them free. In the third stanza, we can see the following quote were the speaker uses a simile to demonstrate how his son is breaking away from him, “Eddying away, like a seed loosened from its parents stem.” What is quite particular about this line is that the author set it as unnatural and unconventional, like if the seed (son) flew away from the plant (home). The poem finishes with the following lines, “How selfhood begins with a walking away and love is proved in the letting go,” which, to me, is what the poem is all about. How the father needs to trust his son and let him ‘write his own story’ and that letting go does not mean abandoning.

To conclude, the author states  his struggle and bearing with it through the poem ‘Walking Away’ and does it in a way that the reader can comprehend his feeling and sympathize for him.

Analizing: A Birthday

Our literature teacher, Pato Chujman, asked us to work in group in order to analize the poem we read in class called “A Birthday” by Christina Rossetti. My group included Florencia, Josefina and Rocio and we answered the following questions:

a. What is the theme?
Love, relationship, celebration, religion.

b. What is the tone?
Happy, excited, in love, joyful, glad, etc.

c. What is the main difference between the two stanzas?
In stanza one the voice talks more about nature and in stanza two she speaks of material things.
Ex. Stanza 1: ‘Whose boughs are bent with thickest fruit.’
Stanza 2: ‘Work it in gold and silver grapes.’

d. How are the similes in the poem appropriate for the romantic longings the speaker feels?
She’s explaining how she feels with precious thing because her love is precious to her.

e. How is the metaphor of the birthday appropriate?
It is a metaphor because she feels like she was reborn with this new love. It is like a new beginning, a way to finally be with the person that is right for her. Also a birthday can be associated with a celebration, and love is something she cherishes and wants to celebrate.

f. Make a list of religious symbols. What do they mean in the poem?
“And peacocks with a hundred eyes” is a metaphor that means that God sees through the eyes of nature, of the animals. “Doves” are white birds and white birds represent peace.

Here is a video of an actress reading the poem, it helps us as readers understand what the writer was trying to express.

 

A Horse and two Goats Essay

Our literature teacher, Pato Chujman, asked us to wrie an essay abot the foolowing statement:

The most important theme in “A Horse and two Goats”, and in fact the central theme of Narayan’s work, is the clash of cultures. Do you agree?

In the following essay, I am going to develop on how I far I agree with the previous statement.

On the one hand, I believe that the theme of clash of cultures is very important so that the readers can see the contrast between this completely different cultures, and the way it gets ‘lost in translation’. Also, it adds a humorous touch to the story. In the story, “A Horse and two Goats” the clash of cultures between Muni and the american man is very evident. They both seem to believe their talking about the same thing, but they are talking about very different things. In the following extract, it shows the miscommunication because in one part when Muni is telling the american man about his childhood he believes he is talking about selling the statue. “(…) when he heard his grandfather, whose grandfather . . . ‘ The other man interrupted him with, ‘I don’t want to seem to have stopped here for nothing. I will offer you a good price for this.” There is an ironic end which is when Muni believes he sold his goats when he actually sold the statue which he loved.

On the other hand, i do not think it is the only theme which is critical in the story. I believe postcolonization plays a big part in the story. India is the setting for “A Horse and two Goats” which was previously colonized by the United Kingdom. In this passage you can see an example of how the colonization influenced India, “Can’t you understand even a simple word of English? Everyone in this country seems to know English. I have got along with English everywhere in this country, but you don’t speak it”. By adding the historical background the reader can get a better idea on what the characters (in this case Muni) are feeling and how their everyday life.

In conlusion, I believe that there are two main themes which are postcolonization and the clash of cultures.

 

Postcolonial Literature

Our literature teacher, Pato Chujman, has asked us to research online for post colonial literature. This is because we were reading “A Horse and two Goats”.

Post-colonialism in literature includes the study of theory and literature as it relates to the colonizer-colonized experience.

Definition

In many works of literature, specifically those coming out of Africa, the Middle East, and the Indian Subcontinent, we meet characters who are struggling with their identities in the wake of colonization, or the establishment of colonies in another nation. For example, the British had a colonial presence in India from the 1700s until India gained its independence in 1947. As you can imagine, the people of India as well as the characters in Indian novels must deal with the economic, political, and emotional effects that the British brought and left behind. This is true for literature that comes out of any colonized nation. In many cases, the literature stemming from these events is both emotional and political.

The post-colonial theorist enters these texts through a specific critical lens, or a specific way of reading a text. That critical lens, post-colonial theory or post-colonialism, asks the reader to analyse and explain the effects that colonization and imperialism, or the extension of power into other nations, have on people and nations.

Effects of colonization

As mentioned above, post-colonialism asks the reader to enter a text through the post-colonial lens. The chart below will help you see how to approach a post-colonial reading of a text. As a reader, you would look for the effects of colonialism and how they are addressed through the plot, setting, and characters’ actions.postcolonial_image

Theories on postcolonial literature

Said’s book ‘Orientalism’ (1978) is considered the foundational work on which post-colonial theory developed. Said, then, could be considered the ‘father’ of post-colonialism. His work, including ‘Orientalism’, focused on exploring and questioning the artificial boundaries, or the stereotypical boundaries, that have been drawn between the East and West, specifically as they relate to the Middle East. In doing this, Said focused specifically on our stereotypes of Middle-Easterners; however, these same ideas can be extended to include how we view all ‘others.’ This is the ‘us’-‘other’ mentality that many colonizers take with them into a new country. Such simple generalizations lead to misconceptions and miscommunications, which are often the basis of post-colonial analysis.

 

 

Homi Bhabha’s work, including ‘The Location of Culture’ (1994), focuses on the politics, emotions, and values that exist in the space between the colonizer and the colonized. In other words, cultures are more than ‘us’ and ‘other’; they are the sum of their histories. Bhabha likes to use the word ‘hybrid‘, meaning composed of mixed elements, to describe post-colonial people and experiences. In doing this, Bhabha focused on the collective effects of colonization on peoples and cultures.