Friday, December 2, 2011


This piece of writing, can be summarized as being about how nothing is considered to be more sacred, than one's own mind. Emerson also noted, that if people would absolve themselves, then they would be able to conquer the whole world.
Emerson also noted, that no law could be sacred to one, but to their own nature. Emerson felt that, an man should carry himself to all oppositions. Emerson was an believer that the virtues are the exception, rather than the rule. He believed also that there is only the man and his virtues. Emerson believed it was better to be an poor, hard-worker, than that which is glittery and full of speculate.
One connection, that I had to this writing, is that it made me think of Thoreau. This had been due to the fact, that both writers served an huge importance during the Romantic Era. They both seemed to question mankind, and the importance of mankind being good in accordance to society.
One question that I had about the reading, is "I wonder, what was the first part of the essay written by Emerson"?. The "Self-Relaince" essay is considered to be the second part. So, I wonder what was the first portion.  Lastly, one connection that this piece of writing could have to other readings that was covered in this course, is that it seems to go along with "Civil Disobedience" written by Thoreau. If one wants to study works by famous American Romantic writers, they should pursue the studies of Thoreau and Emerson. These two men, provided the world with writings that could apply to any time period.
Lastly, I feel as though Emerson was an great Romantic writer. He was an intelligent thinker, whose works could be looked back on in the future.


This piece of writing, can be summarized as being about an reflection on life. As part of the poem, Whitman describes celebrating his being, and singing an song to himself. Also, Whitman mentioned that whatever was the essence of him, was the essence that made up another. Whitman mentions the fact, that he lives in the same place, that all of his prior family generations had lived. Also, Whitman mentions the fact that he hopes to remain in good health,until the day that he would cease to be.
One connection, that I had to this piece of work, was that this poem reminded me of another poem that was written by Whitman. The name of the poem is "Give Me the Splendid Silent Sun". This poem described the writer wanting an sun of splendid, bright rays. Also, Whitman mentioned, that he wanted to have ripe fruit to eat and an place were the grass would grow. So while reading this poem, one could sense the connections between the two forms of poetry that he had created.
One question that came to mind, was "I wonder whom was the person, that Whitman was reffering to in the poem"?. He often made references to "I" and I wonder if it was just for the reader or an certain person, that he had in mind.. Lastly, this poetry could be connected to other course readings. Such readings could be either Emerson or Thoreau. This is due to the fact, that all three of these writers had been based during the Romantic Era. While Thoreau and Emerson were more believers of Transcendentalistism, Whitman's writings could reflect more elements of Romantic Realism.
Lastly, I feel as though this poetry was long, but heartfelt. The first time that I read this poem, I thought that it was melancholy. However, I learned upon rereading the poem, that it was rejoicing and celebrating an life. I have never heard of this Romantic Era writer before, so I at first did not know what his writings were like. However, I really enjoyed this poetry by Whitman. I will possibly read more of Whitman's works in the future.


This piece of writing, can be summarized as being about how Thoreau believed in the fact that the government that is better, if it is the least governed. So this shows, how Thoreau had believed that the government should not be so powerful as to dictate the lives of the people. So even though Thoreau believed in there being an government in place, he believed the least the government ruled the better for all.
Thoreau also explained, how if ones allow the government to abuse power, than it will be harder for the people to protest and fight to overthrow the government.
The connection, that I had to this writing, is that it made me think of Gandhi. This is due to the fact, that both men believed in practicing one's beliefs without violence. Gandhi had credited Thoreau with the abolition of slavery in the States. Also, Thoreau's writing appeared to be applicable otowhat the peoples in India were going through.
Also, Gandhi had been an Indian leader that had been impressed by the works of Thoreau. In 1907, he had written an synposis for the opinons of Indians.
One question that came to mind, was "I wonder what Thoreau would have thought of government in America today"?. Also, I wonder what Thoreau would have thought about countries like China and North Korea, were the people live in communism"?. Lastly, this piece of reading could be applied towards other readings that was completed in class. These readings are Emerson's "Self-Reliance". As one reads writings by these two infleuntial thinkers, one cannot help but be able to recognize the similiarities between these two Romantic writers.
Lastly, I feel as though Thoreau provided the way for other Romantic writers. This had been due to the fact, that Thoreau had an sense of wanting to show elements of infleunce and imagination that was an huge part of Romanticism. Thoreau had been labeled as being an Transcendentalism, as well as Ralph Waldo Emerson. I feel as though both thinkers wrre very talented and showed strong ideals about government and society. Thoreau was an huge part of the Romantic movement in America, due to the fact that he seemed to possess an high level moral enthusiasm, an committing to the unraveling of the self and the individual, and an assumption on the fact that the natural world was evil, while the human society was filled with corruption. Also, Thoreau believed in having an emphasis on intuitive perceptions. Lastly, it is important to remember Thoreau in the terms of being an thinker, writer, and poet. Thoreau believed that one should practiced, what they believed in. Thoreau was an person, that believed in many morals.

Thursday, December 1, 2011


This piece of writing, can be summarized as being about the injustices that the blacks had to endure in America. One connection that I had to this reading, is that it reminded me of "The Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass". This book I had to read, as part of an American History course. This book discussed Frederick's life from childhood to adulthood. It explained, how slaves were often beat senseless for little or no reason at all. Just by masters, whom wanted to prove that they could be able to get away with abusing slaves. Also, the book told about Frederick's many attempts to escape form his master, and having been sepaerated from his family;due to the hands of slavery.
One question that came to mind, was "I wonder if Douglass would have approved of how the world is now"?.  With interracial relationships being allowed to occur, and people being able to live their lives the way they choice to, I wonder how Frederick would have felt if he did not have to be restricted in the time period that he had lived. Lastly, I feel as though this text could be applied towards other readings that was covered in class. These readings are Stowe's "The Tale of Two Altars". This story was an antislavery composition, that was intended for abolitionists to know about the tribualtions that blacks had to endure going through.
Lastly, I feel as though Douglass was an very interesting and historical figure. I feel as though people should take the time out to read more works by Frederick Douglass. Regardless of rather they are required to read his stories or not. Even though this particular piece of writing was long, I feel as though it was very truthful and heartfelt. This piece spoke of the hardships that blacks had to endure, just because of the color of their skin.
In this composition, Frederick mentioned that unjust laws existed in America. He questioned, if people should just be content with things the way they were, or if people should strive to change things that resulted in people being segragated. Frederick noted, that if one would simply wait until someone would allow a change to take place, then an man's life would have already passed him by.
That is why I think that Frederick Douglass was such an great writer and thinker of the Romantic Era in America. This had been due to the fact, that Douglass encouraged ones to be good in an corrupt society.

twain-the war prayer

This piece of writing, can be summarized as being about how there are soldiers that are preparing to enter battle. As described By Twain there was an aura of great excitement as the men were prepared to go off to engage in battle. As demonstrated in one line, "in every breast burned the holy fire of patriotism"( This can show that the men felt as though there country was being invaded, and wanted to fight to prove their undying love for their land. Twain goes on to mention that the soldiers parents', wives', and sweethearts were available to wish the soldiers farewell and to show their support for their soldiers and others.
However the following day, there is an Sunday church service dedicated to the soldiers that are preparing to leave for the battlefront. An chapter from the Old Testament was read aloud, and then came the "long prayer". However, before the service ended, an elderly man whom was an stranger to all stepped forward. He claimed that he was coming, to bear an message from God. Even though the man claimed to be an messenger of God, he was viewed by everyone as being an madman. This was due to the fact, that no one could make sense of his spoken words.
One connection that I have to this story, is that it made me think of all the war films, that I have seen in my lifetime. I had an particular memory of the film "Cold Mountain". This film is baded on an book by the same name and is based during the Civil War era. This film chronicled the fighting, that occured between the soldiers on the north and the south side. But mainly, the film focused on the lives of the women, that were left behind to fend for themselves.
One connection, that I had to other readings that was covered in this course, is that this story of course reminded me of "Huck Finn". One could be able to tell, that Twain had written both pieces of writings.
This is due to the fact, that the compositions seemed to reflect an sense of religion in an satricial manner. As in the case of "Huck Finn", he felt as though he had to denounce religion, due to the fact that he was an friend of Jim's. That was due to the fact, that the many Christians in the south felt as though blacks needed to remain as slaves. In Twain's writings, he portrays those that are deeply religious, as being too overzealous. And yet, those that are true Christians are often manipulated, due to their deep faith. In both stories, Twain seems to view both the church and religious people in an satricial sense. As in the case of the elderly stranger that professed to be speaking the very words of God. Instead of the church members taking the words seriously, the man was viewed as being mad. This seems to be typical, of Twain professing his views on the subject matter of religion.
Lastly, one question that I had about this piece of writing by Mark Twain, is that "I wonder who exactly was the man, that claimed to be knowing the words of God"?.  I wonder if the man was truly insane, or if he felt as though he had an actual closer relationship to God.
I felt as though this piece was more easier to read and understand compared to "Huck Finn". I personally feel as though Twain was an very talented writer in early American history. I also feel as though this story can be applied to what is going on in current times. With men having to battle in war since this piece was written, it can be applied to what anyone goes through when they engage in an war. I also found it interesting to note, that Twain had written this composition in response to the Phillipine-American War of 1899-1902. Twain had been an strong opposer, to this war occuring. I also found it interesting to know, that this composition had been rejected by his publisher. The writings were not discovered, until after his death. The "War Prayer" had been found among his other manuscripts that had been unpublished as well.


The piece of writing, can be summarized as being about an unusual family for its time. This is due to the fact, that the husband is black and his wife is an mulatto. This had been the first antislavery story, that Stowe had ever written. The purpose of her writings, had been to generate huamn sympathy about the inhuamne treatment towards blacks during this period of time. This is an sentimental portrayal of an life of an sober, working-class family. The story farther triggers readers' sympathies, due to the fact that at the story's conclusion, the husband is arrested. This is due to the fact, that her husband had been an runaway slave. He is forced, to relocate to the state of Georgia.
 One connection that I had to this writing, is that it reminded me of another story by Stowe. The name of the story is "Uncle Tom's Cabin". This story is very sad and yet truthful. That is due to the fact, that it is about an slave named Tom. Tom had been the son of slaves. However, he is owned by an slave-owner named Mr.Selby. however Mr. Selby is in debt and must result to selling off some of his slaves. However, even though Tom is an good natured person despite his living conditions, Mr. Selby decides to sell Tom. Tom is the son of his wife's favorite slave. When Tom's mother learns of the news, she decides to flee to Canada with her husband and son. However, even though she is able to escape to Canada and is reunited with her husband, her son Tom is still in his master's hands. This is due to the fact, that tom had decided to try not to escape. However, Tom's master is killed in an brawl. This results in him being sold off in an auction. Tom is abused, by an cruel overseeer, in his master's new home. That is due to the fact, that he wants to try to make Tom into an hard and brutal man like himself. However, Tom ends up dying from his abuse. So even though Tom dies and the story for him ended in tragedy, one can read about how his family managed to be reunited with one another in the north.
One question that came to mind, was I wonder "if Stowe based her stories off of personal experiences or not"?. Even if these had been fictional characters, I wonder if Stowe knew about slaves that had endured these same situations or not.
When it comes to other course readings, I feel as though it can be compared to Frederick Douglass' "What to the Slave is the Fourth of July"?. This is due to the fact, that both piece of literatures deal with the factors of racism and submission to those that are viewed to be "superior" to others.
Lastly, I feel as though Stowe wrote an very easy story to understand. However, due to the subject matter, is was often hard to be able to read. I feel as though her works, spoke volumes about what blacks had to endure during the time of slavery. "The Two Altars" is an example of her beliefs concerning antislavery. I found it unsettling, that just over an century ago in America, people were being solded into slavery against their will. These people were often taken from their families and may have never seen their loved ones again. However, it is important to note, that slavery has occured in places all around the world. That Asians and Native Americans have been foced to endure the hands of slavery as well. So the purpose of Stowe's writings, was to allow people to realize the hardships that slaves had to endure, and that slavery should be abolished for all times.


This piece of writing, can be summarized as being about the restrictions that women had to endure, in their everyday lives. One connection that I had to this writing, was that it made me think of all that women had to go through, during the hands of time. From enduring cruelty at the hands of masters, to fighting for the right to vote; there is so much that women of all different ethnic groups, had to endure. One connection to another reading, was that this writing made me think of Sojourner Truth's "Ain't I a Woman"?. This speech by Truth was given at an convention and heard by many. This speech by Truth, also had an similiar element to what Stanton was speaking of. She mentioned how severly restricted that both white and black women were in their everyday lives. However, due to the fact that Truth was both black and a female, she took great pains to mention how harsh an life was for women belonging ot this ethnic group. She mentioned how black women were not allowed to pursue even the same occupations thast white women were allowed to have. She mentioned in her speech, how colored women were only allowed to work in housekeeping and was not able to experience the world, the way that whites may have been allowed to. She stressed that this was an means, to be able to restrict black women and to keep them ignorant of the world around them. Truth wanted others to know that by doing so, that black women could never be able to get farther ahead in life, if they were kept back in this manner.

One question that came to mind, was if I could have been able to ask Stanton anything; I would have asked Stanton "what would she have said today, if she could see how far women have progressed worldwide"?. Lastly, I feel as though one connection to other course readings is that this reading by Stanton reminded me of "Incidents in the Life of an Slave Girl" by Jacobs. This is due to the fact that Jacobs was strictly limited in her environment. She had to endure much abuse and racism, because she was an black woman that was living during the time of slavery. She had to endure acts by the hands of her master, that involved being pushed down the stairs and having her children be threathened to be taken away from her. Any act of defiance, could led to her and other African American women being punished strictly. Even though male slaves had to endure hardships, the woman had to endure often stronger tribulations. Such as being often raped by their masters and giving birth to children, that had not been fathered by their husbands. Jacobs was also restricted, in the fact that she was not allowed to read or write. The slaveowners did not want their slaves to have power. This would have occured, if the slaves had been allowed to pursue reading and writing. Still,  Jacobs was able to still find an means for being able to learn how to read and write, despite punishment.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

The Wasteland

This work of poetry, can be summarized as being about an lenghthy poem, that is divided up into five sections. So, that there appears to be an series of five different poems, inside of one long poem. The first poem is titled "The Burial of the Dead". The poem, seems to describe an sense of chilliness and little warmth. The poem describes how April is an harsh month. This is due to the fact, that the snow and rain has buried any signs of life. Such as killing the lilacs and dulling the roots of the trees. The poem goes farther to describe images in terms like "broken" and "dead". So needless to say, there are little mentions of warmth in this poetry. This same sentiment, could be echoed throughout the rest of the verses.
 While I was reading this work of writing, I could not help but have an question that I would have liked to be able to ask Eliot if I could. The question is "what was going through your mind, as you wrote this piece of poetry"?. This is not an poem, that one could write in an short period of time. This had been due to the fact, that the poem is lengthy and seems to have been wrote, over an period of time. When it comes to any other connections, that I may have established while reading the text; I would have to say that this poem also reminded me of "Howl" by Ginsberg. That was due to the fact, that both writings have an sense of foreboding, of being lost in the warped words of the writer. These poems seemed to all have an sense of wanting to escape, and yet finding that there is nowhere to escape to. Also, each verse seems to be more disconnected, from the rest of the other verses.
When it comes to any other class readings that I may have had an sense of familiarity, while reading this form of poetry, it was that I immediately thought of Eliot's other poem. The name of this poem is "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock". This poem also had an sense of not knowing exactly what it was that the writer wished to convey.
Lastly, this poem seemed to be about an desolate area of confusion. It was hard for me to be able to understand and interpet. The poet seemed to be speaking of whatever it was that was going through his mind, that greatly bothered him. Also the poem was divided into five sections. And each section, was giving names like "The Burial of the Sea", "A Game of Chess", "The Fire Sermon", "A Death by Water", and "What the Thunder Said". This gives the reader, an sense of melancholy and darkness. so the reader could already anticipate, that these were not going to be light-hearted readings. The writings did appear to be very gothic-laced and dreary.


One specific question that I had while reading this particular writing by Eliot titled "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufock", was "what exactly was meant by the mermaids in the writings"?. At the end of the composition, was mentioned mermaids singing out on the beach. Eliot mentioned how he "did not think that they would sing to him". He goes on, to describe the mermaids as riding seaward on the waves, and how he had lingered with them "in the chambers of the sea". Eliot also mentions drowning along with the mermaids, and being asleep until they were "awaken by human vioces".
An brief summary of this piece of writing, could be summarized as being about how an male is determined to be involved in an romantic relationship with someone. The poem starts off, with the speaker saying "Let us go then, you and I" (Eliot 1). However, the relationship seems as though it will not possibly led to any importance. As Eliot describes "cheap hotels and half-deserted streets", one may possibly think that he is engaging in an relationship with an prostitute that he has barely met. When Eliot mentions that the person will have time to prepare and meet new faces, one must ponder if the person that Eliot is involved in is actually an prostitute, that will have the rest of the night to engage in new relations with others. Also, Eliot mentions that "there will be time to murder and create" ( Eliot 29). So this can possibly be an allusion, that the woman has had many abortions and will probably have many more, due to her profession. Eliot also mentions in another verse, that "the women come and go, talking of Michaelanglo"( Eliot 35). This can be an reference, that the writer and his companion are an world apart from these people. Due to the fact, that these women may be more intelligent and more financially stable, than the writer. So the writer could never be able to fit in their world. Also, when the writer refers to the mermaids at the end of the composition, this could be an reference to the fact; that the mermaids would reject him. Due to the fact, that meramids are an representation of beauty and being ethereal creatures, that he could never be able to possess.
One particular connection, that came to mind while conducting this reading, was that this poetry reminded me of "The Waste Land". This was also an poem, that had been created by Eliot. However, both poems had an sense of desolation and being out of place. It was easy to recognize both of these poems, as having been created by Eliot. They both were long, and followed the same sense of being out of place. Out of all the course readings that was assigned for the 20th Century period, this writing in particular made me think of this piece of poetry. While reading the "The Love Song", I thought about an lovelorn person, that felt out of place in the society. That the person dreamt, of being able to escape with someone and go far away from everything.  This had been due to the fact, that I sensed in the verses, that Eliot wanted to convey an sense of disconnect and having to carry on through life alone.
Lastly, I felt as though this poem was more harder to be able to undestand. The poet seemed to speak of an sense of bittersweet poignancy. The writer did not appear to be in love with anyone, even though the words "The Love Song" is the title of the piece. The writer appears to be rejected, by many females that he encounters.

Countee Cullen Yet Do I Marvel

As part of this course, it was required that the poem by Countee Cullen be examined. The name of this piece is poetry, is titled "Yet Do I Marvel". I believe that this piece of poetry, can be summarized as being about Cullen's expereince at being an African-American . In the poem, he appears to marvel over the fact; that he was destined to become an black poet. He seems to note in an almost sarcastic tone, that he "doubts not God is good, well-meaning, and kind". This can almost symbolize that God does not make mistakes, and yet Cullen questions why He allows some of His peoples to be "colored" and therefore afflicted with much suffering and racism on earth. This can be demonstrated by the verse "why flesh that mirrors Him must someday die". This can show, that God made people look different, for reasons unbestknown to Cullen.

One specific question that I had about the poet's writing, was "Did he mean to write in an saracstic, or curious tone"?. The poem starts off, with Cullen questioning God's intentions for why people are they way they are.
While reading this poem, I could not help but think of Hughes' "Theme for English B". The reason that this came to mind, was due to the fact that both poems had similiar elements. The two poets, seemed to be expressing curiosity over how different or alike they are to whites. Another connection that I had, was to the reading of the poem "Incident". This work of writing reminded me of this piece, due to the fact that both poems had parallels of contemplation and curiosity. In Cullen's poem "Incident", he reflects on being an boy of eight.
He is taking an trip to Baltimore, Maryland. His heart and mind is giddy and filled with wonder. However, all of that is about to change for the young Cullen. This is when he encounters an young white boy, about his age. He tries to befriend the boy, but instead the boy rejects his friendship. This is due to the fact, that Cullen is black. The white child sticks his tongue out at Cullen, and calls him an "racial slur". Cullen reflects how out of the several months that he spent in Maryland, that that is the only memory that he has of Maryland.

Lastly, I felt as though this was an more easier poem to read and understand. The poem seemed to explain how Cullen contemplated over the fact that he was born to be an black poet, and the racism that blacks had to endure during this period of time. I feel as though poems by writers like Cullen, give an truthful insight into the minds and hearts of African Americans, particularly African American males.

Countee Cullen "Heritage"

This poetry, can possibly be summarized as being about an African AMerican male, that is contemplating the importance of Africa to him. In the poem, Cullen seems to be considering all the things that he has heard about Africa, and considering rather or not these people or things has an place in his heart or not. When Cullen mentions that he "does not have an sense of peace", one must wonder what could possibly settle Cullen's troubled mind. Also, it seems at times, as though Cullen is putting himself in the place of an native African male. When Cullen describes having "heathen gods", this an reflection that many Africans may still follow tribal religions. So it is almost as though, Cullen is considering the differences in his own life; if his ancestors had left Africa. At the end of the poem, when Cullen makes an comment about his heart and head not yet realizing, that they and I are civilized; could almost been a comparsion to Africa and himself. The use of the word "they" could represent the peoples in Africa. There is an common belief, that native Africans are uncilivlized and barbarious. So it is almost as though, Cullen can not deny the fact, that he is an African and yet an American. And yet, he could never be able to bridge an gap between the two civilizations.

While reading this poem, I could not help but think of an biography that I read by notable Asian-American writer Amy Tan.. This had been due to the fact, that Tan never learned how to speak Chinese, even though her parents spoke the language fleuntly. Also, she is not an believer in many Chinese traditions, like reverance of ancestors and ghosts. I feel as though even though Tan has been to China occasionally, she will never be able to have the same expereinces as her mother. This is due to the fact, that her mother had been born and raised in China. I feel as though she and other Asian-American writers like Lisa See and Maxine Hong Kingston, can be able to learn Chinese and study Chinese customs, and yet they could not be able to think like an Chinese and have the actual experiences that an person endured in China.
I also had an connection to another class reading. The reading that came to mind, was "Yet do I Marvel" by Cullen as well. This had been due to the fact, that both poems had similiar elements of trying to understand one's nationality, and yet comparing themselves to others.
Lastly, one specific question I had was, "I wonder if Cullen had ever been to Africa or not"?. Throughout the poem, Cullen appears to be comparing his life to those in Africa, and questions what is the signifiance of Africa to him?. Other than the fact, that he is of the same race as the natives of Africa.
Lastly, I felt as though this was an very interesting poem. The poem seemed to speak for the heritage and culture of the African Americans. The poem seems to question rather or not those of African ethnicity residing in America or in other lands, could possibly have the same connections to that of the African peoples residing in the African continent. I think this may also apply to Asian Americans or Hispanic Americans. That is due to the fact, that an Asian residing in Asia would have an different perceptive on life, than an Asian that has lived in Europe or America there whole lives. Just because someone is of an different nationality, does not mean that they will be able to identify with people of the same race as them. This makes me think about an close friend of mine, that is Korean American. She has never been to Korea before, and has lived her whole life here in America. She told me that she does not know the Korean culture or language. Because her family wanted her to be assimiliated into American culture. This is due to the fact, that her parents are Korean immigrants. So, even though she wants to learn more about her heritage, that does not define who she is. So I personally feel as though this poem could be applied to all, of all sorts of ethnicity and cultural backgrounds. Lastly, this poem also reminds me of the increase in international adoptions, that many American families have been pursuing. There has been an surge of Chinese children, that have found homes with families that are often not Chinese. So even those these children are Chinese by ethnicity, they will not be able to identify with Chinese living in China, or with other Chinese immigrants that came to America as adults. I feel as though heritage is an important aspect, and should be explored. And yet, one may not also seek to learn more about their heritage.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Langston Hughes "Theme For English B

While reading this assigned piece of writing, I could not help but think of "Brass Spittons". This had been due to the fact, that this is the name of another poem that had been written by Hughes. The poem can be described, as being about an African American male, that is refered to as an "boy" by his boss. He is required to work an low-paying job cleaning an motel. While he works, he reflects on what he can buy, with the little bit of money that he will earn. While reading this poem, I can be able to note the same themes of being an African-Amercan male in the south.
When it comes to connections to other assigned readings, I could not help but think of the poem "Yet do I Marvel" by Countee Cullen . This had been due to the fact, that both poems focused on African Americans and their lives. This piece of poetry, can be summarized as being about an instructor that asks of his students to write an paper, that is an truthful reflection of themselves. Hughes contemplates about writing about being an colored man, that attended school in the south. Now, he is the only black person in his college class. He questions rather being "colored" makes him all the more different from others. Even if they may have the smae wants and dislikes as Hughes does. Lastly, he mentions how he is an part of his white teacher; as much as his teacher is an part of him. That they are capable of learning about each other, and their own personal experiences.
Lastly, while reading this assigned text, I could not help but think of one question to be able to ask the writer Langston Hughes if I could. The question would be, "did you ever feel discrimination, as being an only colored person in your class"?. I could only imagine what Hughes could have went through, during this period of time.
Lastly, I felt as though this was an very intersting piece of poetry. I feel as though this poem can be interpeted in many different ways. I always find it interesting, to observe how minorities can be able to construct poems and short stories. I feel like in this poem, Hughes was trying to explain how there are great differences between the lives of whites and blacks in America, and yet they have some traits in common as well. Hughes noted how there is much that can be learned, from each other.

"Harlem" Langston Hughes

One particular question that came to mind, while writing my blog was that "I wonder what exactly the dream was that Hughes was reflecting on while he wrote this piece of poetry"?. I wonder perhaps, if maybe he could be reflecting on an dream that someone close to him, could have dreamt of. I wonder if maybe Hughes had been refering to the dreams of just African-Americans or perhaps that of anyone in general. This piece of writing, can be summarized as being about an dream that did not come true. Hughes describes this situation in many different elements. He compares an dead dream, to an "dried raisin in the sun" or an "festering sore". He also asks the reader, if the dying dream "explodes" in the person if it doesn't come true. Or, does the dream "sag like an heavy load" and weighs the person down.
While I was observing the poetry that had been created by the hands of this creative writer, I could not help but noticed how it made me think of the film "A Raisin in the Sun". This had been due to the fact, that when I was taking American English in high school, I had to study this poem and watch this film. This film starring Sydney Poitier, had been about the Younger family. This story had been set in Chicago's southside. This story chronicles the conflicts and dreams of each family member.
The main character is Walter, that is working as an chaeffeur. Him, his pregnant wife Ruth, sister Beneatha, son Travis, and grandmother Lena all lived together in an small apartment complex. However, when the insurance policy comes through on Lena's deceased husband, they debate on what to do with the money. Beneata wants to go to medical school. Walter wants to be able to own his own liquor store. Likewise, Lena wants to move the family to an neighborhood, in an better part of Chicago. The film chronicles the racism that many blacks during this time period had to endure. so I can see why this film, takes its name from an verse in this poem.
When it comes to class readings, I thought of another poem caused Heritage by Countee Cullen.  This had been due to the fact, that these poems both have similiar themes of repression and self-identity. In both poems, one gets the sense that the writer is restricted and has an sense of wanting to escape, from the constraints of society.
Lastly, I am not an huge fan of reading poetry. I perfer reading plays or short stories. I have written poetry before, and I find it to be an lot harder form of writing to be able to compose and interpet. However, I find this to be an short poem that says a lot in its few verses. This poem is very powerful and should make the reader reflect on the questions that are asked.

A Good Man is Hard to Find

In this gothic story by Flannery O'Connor, one question that I had was "what was going to become, of the Misfit"?. After the Misfit had committed the atrocities against the family, one must wonder if the Misfit was ever going to be captured or not.
While reading this story, the best summary that came to mind, was to describe it as being about an family that lives in Atlanta, Georgia. An woman lives with her son, his wife, and children. At the beginning of the story, the family is venturing from their home in Georgia to the state of Florida. The grandmother protests the trip, and would rather her family go to Tennesse instead. She insists that the Misfit has escaped from the prison systems and might possibly be hiding out in the state of Florida. However, her family tells her that she should just stay home instead. However, the grandmother still goes along with the rest of her family to Florida.
 One connection that I made to this story, was that it made me think of another class reading. The reading was "The Red Convertible" by Louise Erdich. Even though Erdich bases her story on an reservation in the midwest and O'Connot bases her story in the rural south, they still have similiarities of not knowing exactly how the stories are going to end. However, both stories end in tragedy.
When it comes to outside class readings, the story reminded me of William Faulkner's "A Rose For Emily". This story also was based in the south. I have read William Faulkner's stories in prior English courses. Even though these stories were based in different time periods, they still had the same elements of gothic horror and suspense. That is why both O'Connor and Faulkner had been labeled as being Gothic Literature Writers.
Lastly, I found this to be an very suspenseful and dark story. Throughout the story, the reader never truly knew how the story was going to end. From the time that the family left traveling in the car, to when they encountered the "Misfit", the reader did not know what exactly was going to happen to the family. I find this to be an very interesting story. I had never heard of Flannery O'Connor before, but I found her to be an very talented writer. I have always been interested in reading gothic literature, so I was very much enthralled in this story.

Hemingway "The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber"

In this short story by famous writer Ernest Hemingway, which is titled "The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber"; I feel as though this story could best be summarized as being about an wealthy and socially prominent American couple in Africa, on an safari. Their names are Francis and Margot Macomber. Robert Wilson is an professional hunter, that is accompanying them on the safari. It is important to know, that the relationship between the Macombers has hit an sour note. Also, even though Wilson hides his thoughts from Francis; he has little respect for Macomber. This is due to the fact, that Francis had panicked and fled while trying to murder an lion during an hunt. Macomber is deeply embarrassed by the situation, even despite Wilson's assurances about the whole situation.
One question that I had about the story, was "what would become of the characters at the story's conclusion"?. I was wondering, if Margot Macomber was going to get away with the murder of the Francis Macomber. Also, one must wonder if she had really intended to kill him or not?.
When it comes to connections to this story and other course readings, I was reminded of "The Silver Dish". This is due to the fact, that both stories you had to reread in order to be able to understand what exactly was going on in the story. Also in both stories, you did not know exactly how they were going to end.
Lastly, whenever I reflect on other readings that were conducted throughout my lifespan, the story by Ernest Hemingway titled " The Snows of  Kilimanjaro" comes to mind. This story, I was required to read as part of an "Introduction to English" course, that I had to take my first year at community college. The story could have been summarized as being about the relationship between an man and his wife. The main character of the story was an writer by the name of Harry. While Harry is dying on his deathbed in Africa, he reflects on his life. He thinks about his problems with drinking, his martial problems to his wife Helen, and the other women that he was engaged with. It is interesting to note, that throughout his reflections; he refers to his wife as simply being "she". It is note until the end of the story, that the reader learns what his wife's name was actually Helen. This story reminds me very much of "The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber". This is due to the fact, that both stories featured couples that had unhappy marriages.
Lastly, I feel as though Ernest Hemingway was an very good and talented writer in his time. However, I am not an huge fan of his works. This story was long and I had to go back and reread several parts, just to make sure that I was able to get an grasp of what Hemingway was possibly trying to say. At times, I felt more sorry for the animals getting killed, than I did for the humans in the story. This is due to the fact, that the animals are innocent creatures. However, the characters in the story are not ones that I can identify with. Many of the characters seemed obssessed with greed and competition.

Harrison Bergeron by Kurt Vonnegut Jr.

This reading, can be summarized as being about an family by the name of George and Hazel Bergeron. They had an son named Harrison. However, their son had been taken away from them, at the age of fourteen. He had been taken from them, by the Handicap Generals. This story was set in the year 2081.
During this time period, everyone is considered to be equal. This has been due, to changes to the Amendment. Even though Hazel and George grieved over their son being taken from them, they could not be allowed to find the situation to be as tragic as one may think. This was due to the fact, that the wife had short bursts of memory. So only memories of her son would come and go. Also, her husband had to wear an mental handicap radio in his ear. This was due to the fact, that he was not allowed to have too much control of his mind.
While reading this piece of work, I could not help but make an connection to Feed. This book is one of the assigned readings for the "Major American Writers" course. The reason that this book, reminded me of Feed was that it also had themes of people being dominated by someone or something, in an futuristic setting. Another connection to pop culture, that I had to this book was that it made me think of the film "Children of Men". "Children of Men" is also an futuristic storyline about mankind being changed, from how the world is now. Both this film and story have elements of suspense along with science-fiction themes.
 Lastly, one question that I had about the book, was that " what was the purpose of the ballerinas in the story"?. In the short story, George and Hazel had been watching ballerinas perform on the TV set. Whenever George would wince, the ballerinas would wince and mimic George's movements.
 Lastly, I feel as though this piece of writing was very interesting and yet hard to interpet. This would be an awful world to be part of, if technology and other forces were actually controlling people. I have never been an huge fan of science fiction, so I had to reread this story several times to be able to understand it. However, I did find "Harrison Bergeron" to be very unique and intriguing.

Howl Allen Ginsburg

This piece of writing can not be easily summarized. This is due to the fact, that the lines seemed to jerk from one line to the next. In one line, Ginsberg is discussing intelligent minds being ruined. However in the next verse, the writer is mentioning that people are listening out for terror against the walls. One question that came to mind, was "what was Ginsberg thinking of, while he crafted this poem"?. If I could have been able to, I would have liked to ask Ginsberg this exact question. One connection that I had to other course readings, is that this poem reminded me of the "The Waste Land" by Eliot. That is due to the fact, that neither poem can be easily defined. These poems both seem to have an sense of disconnect and disjointed place in the world. Lastly, one connection that I had was that this poem reminded me of an band called "A Perfect Circle". If one was to read this band's lyrics, they would have an hard time trying to interpet the songwriter's meanings. Because the lyrics are considered to be strange and away from an sense of stability in the world.
 I personally found this to be an unusual and strang piece of poetry. It is one of those poems, that cannot be easily lableled and fit in an "box". When the reader is reading this poem, the reader does not know what exactly is Ginsberg trying to say or even if he is aware of what he meant to say. I had an hard time, trying to interpet this piece of writing. This poem did not seem to have an sense of normalcy or understanding to it. The verses seemed to be disconnected and did not flow easily from one line to the next. One word that came simply to mind, was "pyschodelic" after I finished reading this poetry by Ginsberg. For only him, could understand the true possible meaning behind this poetry.

Monday, November 28, 2011

A Silver DIsh Saul Bellow

This piece of writing, can be summarized as being about the character named Woody. Woody is the story's protagonist, that is at the current age of sixty. He has had success working as an businessman and being the owner of a title distributing company. He lives alone, in an apartment on the top floor of the company. However, the main plot of the story is that he reflects on the life of his father and him. His father had been named Morris "pop" Selbst, and had died earlier in the week. Woody also thinks about his two, weak-willed sisters that still live at home. Despite the fact, that his sisters are middle-aged women now. Also, his mother comes to mind. She had converted to the Catholic religion, and as an result, had hastened his father to leave the home. Woody also reflected on his wife, whom he has been seperated from for the past fifteen years. Woody also remembers his mistress Helen, whom he had had engagements with for an while.
Lastly, Woody reflects on his father's mistress Halina; whom his father left to be with when Woody was only fifteen. They had spent an total of forty years together. Woody also reflected on how Sundays were the day, that his father and him had spent together. It is important to know, that this story had been based during the time of the Great Depression. So for an family like Woody's, they were prone to experience much poverty and harshships.
One question that came to mind, was that I wonder if Saul Bellow had based this story off of personal experiences or not?. Due to the fact that he was an Jewish man from Canada and the characters in his story was Jewish as well, I wonder if he was drawing off of personal experiences while writing or not? One connection that I had to other readings, was that this short story made me think about the fact, that I have read few stories written by Jewish writers. Upon reseaching the author, I learned that Saul Bellow had been an Jewish writer. I will most likely read more Jewish literature in the future. The only other Jewish writer whose works that I have read, had been written by writer Jodi Picoult. And, she is an nonpracticing Jew. So I will most likely be reading more Jewish literature in the future, if I get the chance to. Lastly, when it comes to how I could apply this to my own personal experiences, I would have to say that this story made me think about how Woody went against his better judgement, just to be able to help his father.  Woody had lost the opportunity to have his tuition paid for, becuase of the indulgences of his father. That is why Woody begans to gradually distance himself away from Morris. I have met many people in my own life, that have had an situation similiar to Woody. This is due to the fact, that Woody is determined to help his father out for the sake of love.
Lastly, I felt as though this was an very unusual story. I have never read stories by or have heard of Saul Bellow before. So this story took me several times to reread, to make sure that I was fully grasping what was actually occuring.

The School

This piece of writing, could be summarized as being about the many deaths that occur at an elementary school. The many deaths that the school witnesses, are the deaths of trees in the school's nursery and the herb garden. Even the class pets met an unfortunate demise. Also, several of the student's parents had died and some of the students attending the school had died in freak accidents. Even the Korean child that the students were supporting through charity, had died from reasons unknown to the class. 
One connection that I had to other course readings, was that this story reminded me of O'Connor's "A Good Man is Hard to Find". That is due to the fact, that both short stories reflected elements of death and melancholy. Just like the family in "A Good Man" met an unaviodable demise, these persons in "The School" seemed to die from something beyond their control.
 One question that came to mind, was "what exactly was causing these people or things to die"?. Also, "was the association to the school was what factored into all these deaths occuring"?.
Lastly, one connection to my own life that I made was that it made me think of all the funerals that I have been to in my years of living. I have had to see both sets of grandparents being buried. So, this story made me reflect on all the different losses that I have endured in my life. If I was an child attending the school in the story, I would be devastated to have to endure through soo many deaths close to me.
I personally found this story, to be very unusual and odd. I have never read an story, like this before. However, I feel like death is an natural part of life and that is what the writer may be possibly trying to express. However, I noted that the students seemed very mature for their ages. This can be displayed, by the dialogue and actions that the students made.

From Blossoms

This poem can possibly be summarized as being about young people in love. The poem may possibly address, how these people live in the moment, and do not fear death or possibly think of any shortcomings or "bad luck" that may befall them.
One question that I had while reading this poem, is that I wonder "who was the intended audience for this poem"?One connection that I had to other readings that was covered in this course, is that it made me think of other minority, male poets whose works that we had to read for class. Even though these men were African-African, it is interesting to read about how Asian-American and African-American have often similiar or perhaps different themes in their poetry.
Lastly, one connection that came to mind was that this poem appeared to be very in touch with nature. The word "blossoms" makes me think of cherry blossoms. Of course, this sort of plant is associated with the Japanese symbol for their country. That was why before I researched the author, I thought mistakenly that the writer was Japanese. However upon reading for more information about the writer, I discovered that he is Chinese by ethnicity.
However, his family had moved to Indonesia before his birth. The writer of this poem had been born actually in Indonesia. Li-Young Lee had been born in the year of 1957 to parents, that had been exiled from China. I also learned that Lee had been born into an infleuntial family. His great grandfather had been the first president of China. Also, his father had been Mao's personal doctor. However, peace did not last long for the Lee family in their new home in Indonesia. This was due to the fact, that anti-Chinese sentiment had begin to develop against Chinese that had settled in the land. So, the Lee family was forced to flee to the Americas. This was after having briefly resided in Japan, Hong Kong, and Macau.
I discovered that Lee's poetry is noted, for its elements of mysticism and silence. The poem "From Blossoms" does have an element, of wondering if Lee had an more deeper meaning for the poem, or was it just intended to appear simple and being in touch with nature. Even though Lee is considered to be an lyrical poet, his poems often use personal life experiences. As one reads Lee's works, they may possibly feel the potent and poignant longing for something greater, that has not been yet achieved. As one reads Lee's poems, they may possibly feel as though Lee is longing to find an sort of compassion. One may possibly feel as though Lee has laced his words with "both anguish and adoration". Even though Lee's poems may have an almost childlike element to them, his creativity may be corseted with his personal memories of immigration, his family, war, and food. I will most likely read more of Lee's poetry and books in the future. I feel as though he is an good poet. I have read several poems before by Asian-American women. However, I have never read any poems by male, Asian-Amercians before. I will most likely read more poems by Lee in the future. However, I still often had trouble at first, deciphering what exactly Lee meant by certain verses. I have wrote poetry before, but still I personally perfer reading and writing short stories to poems. Even though this poem was interesting and easy to read, it was still hard to interpet. While reading this piece of writing, I could not help, but think of warm weather and taking delight, in the carefree attitude of the poem.

Charloote's Web

One connection that I had to other readings, is that this story made me think about "Stuart Little". I read "Stuart Little" when I was in elementary school. This story was also about an animal that had human characteristics. Stuart Little was an rodent, that lived in New York City. Since Stuart was adventurous, this story reminded me a lot of the characters in "Charlotte's Web".
One question that came to mind, was "I wonder how the rest of Wilbur's life turned out to be like"?. Since Wilbur managed to escape death, it would be interesting to know how the rest of Wilbur's life panned out. I hope that Wilbur lived to have an very long and rich life.
One connection that I could make to my own life experiences is that I am an vegetarian. Even though I do not condone others for eating animal products, I have not eaten meat in almost an year. My mother and I both decided that eating meat was not something that we were comfortable with. I am an strong supporter, of my choice to have made this important decision.
Also, while reading this story, I thought of having read the actual "Charlotte's Web" story when I was in elementary school. This was one of my favorite books. I feel as though White was an good writer. When I am in the teaching profession, I will most likely read "Charlotte's Web" to my classroom. I feel as though children can relate more to stories about animals, than they often can to stories about humans.
Lastly, this story can be summarized as being about the relationship between an pig and an spider. The name of the spider is Charlotte, and the pig's name is Wilbur. Wilbur manages to escape death, by the help of his trusted friend Charlotte. Charlotte resides in the rafter above the barn were Wilbur is placed on a farm. Wilbur is scared, at the prospect of dying. So Charlotte creates an spiderweb, that would convince the farmer to not have Wilbur killed. The farmer was able to realize, that Wilbur was an extraordinary animal that derserved to live. In the excerpt of "Charlotte's Web", this expalins how Charlotte is dying.
I personally felt, as though this was an very sad and very touching story. This story told the ultimate sacrifice that one friend would make for another friend. That is why I personally find Charlotte's Web to be such an touching tale, of friendship in the strongest sense of the word. I feel like people wish that they could have an friend that would do for Charlotte, like Wilbur did for her. Wilbur knows that he will have an secure future, since Charlotte did everything in her power to save him. Wilbur feels bad, since he used to view Charlotte as being an blod-thirsty, mean spider. however, Charlotte reassures Wilbur that he helped made her life be better. And that she knows, that she will not be returning home from the fair. However, she wants Wilbur to help protect her babies. So, Wilbur gets Simpleton, the rat to help get down Charlotte's web sac. He promises Simpleton, that he will allow him to be the first to eat. So, Charlotte dies at the conclusion. Wilbur helps raise her children and grandchildren. However, there is no one that is able to take Charlotte's place.

The Red Convertible

This short story by Louise Erdich, can be summarized as being about the relationship between two, Native American brothers. One question that I had while reading this story, was" I ponder if the brothers had the same mother, or not"? This is due to the fact, that the story inplies that the brothers may have been fathered by two, different men.
The story, is about the life of the two brothers named Henry and Lyman. Like many other Native Americans, them and the rest of their family reside on an Indian reservation. The brothers share an close relationship, until the oldest brother Henry is sent off to serve in the Vietnam War. Even though he is not killed in battle, when he comes home, he is an "broken shell" of himself. He is far from being the same person, that he had been before. The story concluded with Henry taking his own life.
I felt like this was an very depressing story to read. I feel like Louise Erdich is an very talented writer, and I will most likely be reading more of her works in the future. However, I have noticed that many Native American writers use themes of melancholy in their writings. Even though this characters are most likely fictional, I feel like this story rings true for many soldiers that have engaged in battle. Regardless of their socioeconomic class and race.
One connection that I had to other readings that have been covered in this course, is that it made me think of how unlike this story is from the poem "From Blossoms". While "From Blossoms" is possibly interpeted as being an poem about nature and livelihood, "The Red Convertible" is very depressing to read. Lastly, when it comes to any connections that I could make to other stories or what came to mind while reading this text, is that I could not help, but think of all the movies that I have seen that featured either exclusively on Native Americans, or those serving in battle in general. One movie that came to mind was "Flags of our Fathers". This film was released several years ago. This movie was based on an true story. This film had been directed by the notable Clint Eastwood. The film tells the story of the soldiers, that were engaging in the battle with the Japanese over the island of Iwo Jima. This film chronicles the lives of three, young soldiers as they return home; after the war's end.   One of the soldiers was an Native American by the name of Ira Hayes. This film offers an true-life portrayal of the alcoholism issues, that this poor, young man had to endure going through.
I feel as though this story, can be applied to what is going on in American society to this very day. When soldiers are returning back from serving in the Middle East, they are often battling suicidal thoughts and PTSD. These soldiers often feel like their families cannot understand, what they went through. This is due to the atrocities that they witnessed. Also, I feel like this can be said for any soldier that has served in an war. Rather it be World War II, Korean War, or the Vietnam War; these men and often women that were sent overseas had to witness tragedies that they are unable to describe.
Lastly, this story made me think of "Smoke Signals". This is an movie with only an Native American cast. This film stars Adam Beach, whom also appeared in "Flags of of our Fathers". The movie follows the trials and tribulations, that two men by the names of Vincent and Thomas had to go through in their young ages. This film dealt with topics, that often occur on Indian reservations, like alcoholism and abandonment.
Lastly, I feel as though people should be aware of the problems that Native Americans face. Many an times, people forget about all that the Native Amercians had to go through. Native Americans often have to live in poverty on the reservations, and struggle with addiction problems and health-related issues. I would recommend for anyone, to either watch Native American films or to read an story by an Native American author.

slumberland feed pt. 4

One connection that I had to other course readings, is that it made me think of Kurt Vonnegut's "Harrison Bergeron".  This is due to the fact, that both this novel and Vonnegut's short story featured elements of both satire and horror, not to meantion science-fiction elements.
This section could be summarized as being about the gradual demise and death of Violet. She had explained to Titus before her death, that she had gotten the feed at the age of six. That she no longer had any memories of her life, before she had gotten the feed inserted in her braincells. Because the feed was not an medical procedure, Violet's father was unable to pay for her medical bills and the costs to repair the feed. This meant that Violet's body gradually began to defunct, like an computer.
One question that came to mind, was "what would the world be liked, if this book would actually come true"?. I would be frightened, if I had to live in an world were an computer chip in my brain would determine by everyday actions. Also, you must wonder what will become of Titus' life, after the death of Violet. Since it is obvious that Titus and Violet would not ended up together, you have to wonder if they would have stayed together if not for Violet's demise.
Lastly, this connection to my own-life experiences is that I feel as though people are becoming to dependent on technology. It has gotten to the place, that technology is ruling the lives of more and more people. In Japan for instance, many people own cell phones that can find the exact location of an person they are searching for. I feel as though technology has lead to much improvements in one's life, and can yet have many negative factors as well.
Lastly, when it came to the aspect of Violet wanting to be different from the others, it made me think of an book that I read during the summer months called "Wintergirls" by Laurie H. Anderson. This book is about two, young girls that face peer pressure. In order to be like others, these girls end up facing deadly consequences. In this story, Violet's life came to an abrupt halt at an young age, because her parents made her undergo an procedure because everyone else was having it done. In "Wintergirls", the characters also have to face an life-or-death situation, in order to be able to fit in.

utopia feed pt. 3

One question that came to mind, was "how did M.T. Anderson get the ideal for this book"? . This book is unlike, anything that I have ever read before. Even though I am not an huge fan of sci-fi books, I still feel like anyone who reads other genres or they are of the older or younger ages may still appreciate this book.
This could be summarized as being about how life went back to normal for Titus and his friends, after their hospitalization. Even though Titus has gotten used to the feed operating his life, Violet wants to become more in control of her own brain. She tries to teach Titus about techniques that can cause the feed to become more lose in its customer profile, so that no one can market to the feed. Violet refuses to allow herself, to be cataloged. She wants to make herself invisible. This means that Violet is not like the others, and refuses to allow someone or something to determine who she is.
One connection that I had to other course readings, is that it made me think of its comparsion to Harrison Bergeron. In previous blogs, I discussed why I felt like this short story reminds me of Feed. I personally felt like out of all the course readings, that Feed can be the most identifiable to this short story by Kurt Vonnegut Jr.
Lastly, what came to mind out of my own personal experiences is that "Feed" reminded me of an book called "Hunger Games" by Suzanne Collins. This book was based in futuristic America, and had many similiar elements to "Feed" when came to having to survive in an different environmment than what America is like today. In "Hunger Games", the main character is Kat. Kat, her mother, and younger sister live in an very poor district of one of America's twelve districts. The capitol of America is were the wealthy people in America resided at. Many years before, the people that made up the twelve districts had waged war against the capitol. As an result of the peace treaty, the twelve districts must release one male and one female to participate in an yearly "Hunger Games" show that is televised from the capitol. There, the participants must kill each other in order to see who will win the game and be the last person standing. As part of the book's plot, Kat's younger sister is selected to participate in the "Hunger Games". To keep her sister from being killed, Kat volunteers to take her place. Then, Kat embarks on the journey of either kill or be killed.
I personally felt as though this section of the book is very interesting to read. It made me want to keep on reading, to find out exactly how the book was going to end. I sensed that Violet was going to end up dying. However, I wanted to know what was going to happen to Titus.

feed part2 eden

One connection that I had to other readings, is that "Feed" reminded me of the book titled "Speak" by Laurie H. Anderson. Even though "Speak" does not have an exclusive focus on technology the way that "Feed" does, this book also dealt with aspects of isolation and alienation. This is due to the fact that the main character of the book named Melinda experiences an traumatic experience at an young age. After she is sexually assaulted, Melinda shuts down both emotionally and physically. Due to her pain that she is unable to express, Melinda simply stops speaking. In some ways, she is similiar to the character of Violet in "Feed". This is due to the fact, that both girls has to experience feelings of being the outcast among their peers. However, in Violet's case, she is the outsider because she is against the "feed" and is not as receptive to the feed as her peers are.
This section could be summarized as being about how there was an hacker that had tried to hack into the minds of the people. Just like if an hacker attempts to hack into an computer, the people's feed had to be shut down. Titus and his friends were hospitalized, and had to have their feeds decrypted and checked for viruses.
It was mentioned, how the feeds had oringinated about an century before Titus's birth. That they were created, so people could always have technology closer than their fingertips. That people could be smart, without having to actually study or work at acquiring intelligence. However, it got to the place that the feed began to be used for the sake of carrying out daily tasks.
As demonstrated by the fact, that Violet knows how to read and write. Violet is embarrased, when Titus catches her actually writing using an pen and paper. This is due to the fact, that Titus and his friends have gotten used to recording by using the feed. They believe this to be a more efficent and quicker means of being able to write.
One question that came to mind was "what would happen if the characters were to run out of credit?. It was mentioned in the book, how Titus was able to purchase clothing by just ordering inside of his brain. I was wondering, how could the characters be able to restore money once it ran out in the account.
Lastly, what came to mind while conducting the reading, is that " Feed" reminded me once more of "Harrison Bergeron" As having already been mentioned in an previous blog, "Harrison Bergeron" is one course reading that is more closely related to the themes in "Feed". This is due to the fact, that "Harrison Bergeron" had the same themes of being in an futuristic setting and people having their freedom taken from them. As in the case of applying "Harrison" to "Feed", the people in both stories were restricted in their lives. In"Feed", the feed was what modeled and moded the person into an certain image. In "Harrison", the characters were also restricted in the sense of freedom.
I personally felt as though "Feed" is an very interesting book to read. However, I would have most likely not read this book, if I had not been assigned to do so. Even though I think I understand Anderson's reason for having wrote the book, it was still often hard to grasp exactly what the characters were doing at times. I am not an huge fan of science fiction, so this book took some adjusting to. Today in crrent times, people have become too attached to technology. It is hard, to find anyone that does not use some form of medium on an daily basis. So, I think that this book can be applied to how technology has both negative and positive infleunces on people.


One connection that I had to other class readings was that "Feed" reminded me of " Harrison Bergeron" by Kurt Vonnegut Jr. This is due to the fact, that this short story had themes similiar to the aspects of technology, controlling the lives of people.
 One question that came to mind while reading "Feed" was "what exactly was the lesions that the people had?". There was descriptions of people having lesion on their arms and jaws. Titus described the lesions as "really good to see, in the lights of the hallway". Also, Titus mentioned that there were different kinds of lesions, that people could possibly get. I could only be able to imagine, people in the future having to have their bodies covered with colorful lesions.
One connection that I made to an real-life setting, is that "Feed" made me think of how obssessed the world has came with technology. It is almost impossible, to not see someone that does not own an TV, radio, or computer in America. It was very strange, to read about how the characters in "Feed" literally did not have to own an radio, computer, or TV because it was basically all crammed inside of their heads. The characters could be able to know what was the latest fashions, without turning on a TV because the TV transmitters were basically part of their brains.
Lastly, this section could be summarized as being about in an futuristic setting were many people have computer implants in their heads to control their environment around them, and a young boy encounters an young girl who is involved in some deep conflicts in her life.
The main character of the book, is Titus. He is in his teen years, and is able to read, write, and even have his thoughts controlled by the "feed". This is an transmitter that is directly transplanted inside of his brain. Having the feed is an important aspect of life for both Titus and his buddies, not to mention his family. If not for the feed, how would the characters know how to travel to outer space, or how to carry out daily tasks like shopping? However, Titus's world is drastically changed when he encounters Violet. She is an girl who actually gives an care about the world's occurences. Violet is one person, whom is determined to fight the Feed. She also challenges and rises against what Titus and everyone close to him holds dear and treasures.
The section titled "Moon" goes farther into introducing the lives of Titus and his friends. His friends and him decided to venture on an trip to the moon during spring break. This is due to the fact, that they insist that they have absolutely nothing to do at home. They try to seek out excitement on the moon with other kids their age. However, they appear to become easily bored with everything they encounter, after an few moments. That is when Titus first sees Violet. The rest of the section, can be summarized as being about how Titus found Violet to be the most beautiful girl that he had ever encountered. Even though Violet appears to be more mature than Titus and his friends, Titus realizes that this is the girl that he wants to be with.

My overall philosphy on the first part of "Feed" which is titled "Moon" is that it is an very unusual and unique book. When I am teaching in the classroom, I will make sure to bring this book into the classroom, when I am teaching an lesson on technology. I found this book to be easy to read, even though I might not have been aware of what the author was trying to decipher at times. I at first, was put off by this book. However, I was able to read the book from start to finish, once I was able to get past the first few pages.

Monday, November 14, 2011

contemporary poetry

This piece of contemporary poetry, was written by famed poet Sylvia Plath. The name of this poem, is called "Wintering". While reading this poem, I could almost practically feel the isolation and coldness of the writer. The link for this poem, can be found at This poem seemed to deal with what little rights and freedom, that women of this time period had. It also allowed the reader, into the mind of her depressive state. While reading this poem, I had connections to other poems by Sylvia Plath. Such poems was called "Daddy" and "Morning Song". In both poems,  she dealt with similiar themes of confusion, anger, and sadness. The poet appears to be living in an world, that she neither feels as though she belongs to and wishes to escape from. I had many questions, concerning this poem. Such questions were, "what did the poet mean, by there being cats in the cellar"? and "why did the poet not feel as though she could breathe, when she was in one room of the house"?
I personally felt as though this poem, could be applied to other poems that were covered in this class. Such works could be "Howl" by Ginsberg. This is due to the fact, that both poems were hard to decipher and interpet. However, I have aways been intrigued by works by Plath, and will most likely read more of her works in the upcoming years. Lastly, this poem could be attempted to be summarized, about an house tenant that is dissastified with her place there in general. The writer mentions "feelings of being owned" and making references to women being "cold and dumb". This could possibly, be how Plath thought that women were viewed by many around the world. Also, Plath mentions feelings of boredom, and knowing that there are three cats in the cellar and six jars of honey in the house. Also, in the poem, there is mention of an midwife. One has to wonder, if this was an reference to the person in the poem, having had an baby. If so, one must wonder if the infant is alive or dead. Also, there is mentionings of an former tenant leaving belongings behind. One must wonder, "who the former tennant was, and were are they now". One can be able to realize, how Plath was most likely feeling when she wrote this poem, due to verses that mentioned darkness and windowless rooms. One can almost sense the restraints that Plath seemed to be living through and feeling at the time. Lastly, when Plath mentioned "comparing bees to women", and "winter being for women", the reader may possibly feel as though Plath is comparing the strong differences between males and females during this period of time. As though she is saying that women are kept to the confines of their home, with little hope for independence. Likewise, men are allowed to roam freely and are not having to face the same restrictions as women.

flash fiction

The piece of flash fiction, that I found was by an writer named Kelly Wright. The piece of the fiction, is called "All Mimsy". The piece can be read at   This piece may possibly be summarized, as being about an young girl whom has an encounter with an monstrous creature. One question that I had is "what is the creature? and "were did it come from"?, Also, "what did the creature do to the girl"? and "why was the child alone, when she went into the cellar to find the monster"? I personally found this piece of flash fiction, to be terrifying and interesting at the same time.
When it comes to connections, that I have made to other readings, I would have to say that it reminds me of an Victorian fairy tale. That is due to the fact, that it involves an child having to be the heroine, against an monster. In the story however, there are many questions that are left unresolved. It starts off with the girl going into an dark cellar alone, with only an blade in hand. This may possibly signal that she is planning on killing the intruder. She keeps asking the intruder to come out, were she can personally see him .
When the figure comes into her presence, he is described as being "huge" and "towering". The girl asks the creature"if he wants to speak for himself". The reader could only speculate, as to what the monster has done.

However, the monster never says an single word and only locks eyes with the girl. She then tells him that his "apology has been accepted". It seems as though the girl no longer fears or has never feared the creature. This is due, to the many references to her small status. She is often described as being "wispy" and "tiny". So readers must picture an ethereal, small girl approaching this gigantic creature. Lastly, I cannot connect this story to anything, that has been covered in class. This is due to the fact, that this genre has not been covered before.
I had never heard of flash fiction before, so I found this to be an very interesting genre of writing. In the future, I may possibly look into writing my own personal collection of flash fiction.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Cartwright and Allen

The readings of an "Autobiography of Peter Cartwright: The Backwoods Preacher" can be summarized as being about the Reverend Peter Cartwright, whom lived during the 1800s era. This account tells the true life story, of his accounts of traveling through the mountains, as he preached the Christian religion.
During this time, it was believed that Peter Cartwright, was the oldest traveling Methodist preachers. He believed that his teachings, would led to an rise and progress of the Methodist Episcopal Church in the valley of Mississippi.
In this reading, it was mentioned how the "Indians" were driven off the land. Peter Cartwright explained how the Native peoples were "overpowered" and "driven off", in order for the white man to be able to obtained an peaceful and quiet possession of the land.
One specific question that came to mind about this form of writing, is what would Peter Cartwright, have probably thought of people that are living during this time period?. Since he was quick to believe that, the Native peoples were savages. One connection that came to mind about the readings, was that it made me think of the "Sot-Weed Factor".
 This is due ot the fact, that it made me think of how during this time period, the native peoples were viewed as being savages. Even though the Native peoples had occupied the land before the settlers, they were viewed as being barbarians and savages. This is due to the fact, that the settlers did not understand how the Native peoples lived. Because they were so very different, from the Europeans. As in the case of the "Sot-Weed Factor", the settlers that came to America, had an tendancy to view the natives as being savages, even though they were coming ot their territory.
The Native Americans had an complete different way of dressing and practicing religion.One connection that I had to other readings and films, was that it made me think of how many other stories, I have read where the Native Americans were treated unjustly. One such film, is "Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee". This movie explores the issues, that Native Americans had to endure, so many years ago, when they were being massacred. I feel as though many, do not understand all that the Native peoples, had to go through.
Lastly, the story by Richard Allen, which was called "The Life, Experience, and Gospel Labours of the Rt. Rev. Richard Allen", also shares an close tie to the autobiography of Peter Cartwright. This is due to the fact, that an shared theme of both stories are that the Christian religion are both mentioned in the historical accounts.
In the case of Peter Cartwright, the story of how he was an " white backwoods preacher" traveling through the rural south. However, Richard Allen tells how he was an black man that preached the Gospel of the the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, to the "lost ones". So it was very interesting to note in both autobiographies, the stories of how two different men, one black, the other white traveled and preached the Gospel, to the ones that they felt were in need of spiritual guidance.

Thursday, October 6, 2011


The writings that made up "A Narrative of the Life and Adventures of Venture" by Venture Smith can be summarized as being about Smith's account of having been sold into slavery. Ventura Smith had been believed to have been born in the year of 1729. He was believed to have died, in the year of 1805.
 I found myself not having any questions concerning the article of writing. I felt as though the piece of writing, was very easy to read, and was able to grasp the material.
Ventura Smith managed to become an free man, before the end of his life. So he did not have to die, at the mercy of an master. During the span of his life, he had been sold several times and exchanged between the hands of different masters. It is believed that Venture had maintained the personality of an faithful servant, and was believed to have been an person of honesty and temperance.
Like many other slaves of his time, Ventura Smith had been intent on obtaining his freedom from his masters. It is interesting to note, that Venture Smith was allowed to work nights as an fisherman. This was in order ot be able to accumulate enough money, to be able to purchase his freedom from his master at the time. The master during this time, was Col. Smith.
As is already noted, Ventura Smith was given the name of Smith from this particular master. When Ventura was able to obtain enough money, he used this money towards buying an colored woman, by the name of Meg. He later on married Meg and had several children, by her. He was even able to purchase land, for building an home for himself and Meg.
 One connection to the reading that I had was, how many other works that I have read, that chronicle the true life stories of people being sold into slavery . This made me have an connection to another writing, which is "The Incidents of an Slave Girl" by Harriet Jacobs. In Jacobs story, she offers an acoount through an female's approach of what it was liked to be abused and mistreated by her masters. So as one reads autobiographical accounts of what it was like to be an slave, one can have an truthful glimpse of what these people actually had to endure on an daily basis. Such as being whipped or beaten senseless for possibly no feasible reason, other than the person wanting to simply show that they could have control, over someone. Many an times, white masters would beat their black slaves, for an act that had no purpose. But it was just to be able to show the slave, whom was the "superior" race. I feel as though anyone, that wants to learn more about atrocities that were commited towards minorities, should read the account of Ventura Smith. This is one important piece of writing, that should not be ignored by others.

Ben Franklin

The writings of Ben Franklin can be summarized as being about his thoughts and points of view on life, particularly what he thought made an person of good character. I thought it was interesting to note, how he thought that virtues and happiness, would led to an person having an better character.
Franklin believed that "an Art of Virtue, was an feature of private character, and happiness, both public and domestic". "The two will sir, will in particular give a noble rule and education". He believed that school and other education are false principles, and show a clumsy apparatus. I think it would be intriguing to know how, Franklin would have thought of the youth that are living today in this generation, and see how he would think of improving their character.
To be honest, I do not have any specific questions that came to mind, while reading the writings of Benjamin Franklin. I thought that the writings, were more easier to read and understand, after you have read the chapters about two times, in order to be able to grasp an better understanding of what Ben Franklin had hoped to convey in his autobiography.
One connection, that came to mind while I was reading the Ben Franklin chapters was to the portrayal of Ben Franklin in the story, "Bastard" by John Jakes. This reminded me of an American history course, that I took several years ago, where this novel was an part of the required readings. This made me have memories to the readings, such as how Ben Franklin was portrayed in the story. Ben Franklin was portrayed as being an eccentric and interesting character, that wanted to be an friend to everyone. In the novel, was told the story of how the character of Ben Franklin played an important role, in the American Revolution.
It is always interesting to me, to read biographical accounts of how people lived centuries ago. Also, due to the fact that Ben Franklin is such an important contributor to American history, it is always interesting to read the chapters out of the biography, that he crafted. These writings gave me an better understanding of what Franklin was like during the time that he lived, and it seems as though Ben Franklin would have been an interesting person to have known. He seemed to exhibit an sort of personality, that would have made him an character, that would have been interesting and fascinating.

The Sot-Weed Factor Cooke

The writings called the "Sot-Weed Factor" which is based on the character of Ebenezer Cooke can be summarized as being about one man's experience of going to America.  This poem had been written by John Barth, and was mostly likely based off of an novel he wrote that featured this character. Another name for this poem can be called "The Voyage to Maryland". One specific question that I had concerning the text, was that I could not help, but wonder what exactly was the driving force, behind the character of Ebenezer Cooke coming to the native lands. It is speculation, that he most likely came to America, in order to obtain land, that he had most likely lost in his native land of Europe.
This is due to the line "Condemn'd by Fate to way-ward Curse", that it had not originally been Cooke's intention to go to the Native countries. That it was by the hands of fate, that Cooke was driven to go to an foreign land. Also, the lines of "Of Friends unkind, and empty Purse", is an example of how Cooke most likely did not have any money to his name, when he made the journey to America.
 One connection that came to mind while I was examining the text was what it must have been like for the Native Americans, to have so many different settlers coming to their country. For some many centuries, the Native peoples had been used to seeing people of their own skin color populating the lands. Then over the centuries, there became more and more people of white skin, that began to take over the country that they knew and loved.The writings that comprised the "Sot-Weed Factor" made me think of another reading, by the name of  "Angela's Ashes.  I could not help, but take notice of the similiarities and differences between these two stories.
The reason that I thought this, was due to the fact, that this story is also one of someone wanting to go to other country, in order to be able to seek out an better life. However, in the case of Angela's Ashes, it was the story of an family that was venturing to Amercia, in search of an better life away from Ireland.  Also, in the case of the Sot-Weed Factor, the character was coming to Amercia, at an time when Native Americans were still viewed as being savages. However, in the case of Angela's Ashes, the family was coming to America, in the earlier times of the century. The story of this family's plight, was more heartfelt and sorrow-filled, than the plight of the character in this piece of writing. That is why it is of such interest, that you can be able to read different stories of people's lives as they become immigrants of another country. Also, you can read how these people adjusted to their new lives in another country, and read about the driving forces that caused them to go to another land, rather by force or hope.


This reading can be summarized as being about, how the "Romantic Era" was an literary, artistic, and intellectual movement, that originated in the second half of the 18th century in European society. However, this era did not gain an strong response until the Industrial Revolution.
In strong part, this was an revolt against the aristocractic society and political norms of the Age of Enlightment, and an reaction to the scientific rationals of nature. Romanticism was embodied most strongly in the visual arts, music, and literature, but also had an major impact on history and education.
In an literary sense, Romanticism was able to find recurrent themes in past criticisms, emphasis on sensible females and children, the heroic isolation of the artist or narrator, and respect for an more wilder nature.
It is important to note that, many Romantic writers like Edgar Allen Poe and Nathaniel Hawthorne are considered to be writers of the Romantic Era.
It is important for the reader to note, that the Romantic movement placed an strong sense of emotion, on an authenic source of aesthic experience. That placed new emphasis on emotions, like trepiditation, horror, fear, and awe-struckness. An sense of fear and forebading can be seen in works by Hawthorne, where the main character is stepping into the unknown, being unsure of what may possibly happen to him.
It is important to note, that works of Romanticism often offered an sense, of elevating folk art and ancient customs to represent something noble. This is seen in an desirable urge for the main character, to do something considered to be noble. When the main character was going to an different village to find the man that he was looking for, he thought that he was commiting an act of importance to him. However, at the end of the story, the main character did not get what he planned out of the trip.
One connection, that I had to this story, was that it made me think of works by other authors of the Romantic Era that I have read in prior English courses. In addition to Poe and Hawthorne, other writers like Mary Shelley and Byron can be labeled as belonging to the Romantic Era. These works of arts, contribute an sense of fear and suspense in the reader. Much like in the case of Hawthorne, an reader does not quite know what to expect, while reading these novels.


This piece of writing, can be summarized as being about the fact based story, of what Ms. Harriet Jacobs had to endure as an slave. The only difference, is that she goes by the name of Linda in the story, instead of using her real name. In this story, Linda/Harriet tells the account of how she had to endure beatings, by the hands of an white man named Dr. Flint.
 He would commit such atrocities as shoving her down the stairs, or cutting off her long hair, when he became angered by her. Harriet/Jacobs also tells how she had to learn how to read and write secretly, because this was forbidden by slaves during this era in time.
 One connection that I had to this piece of writing, is that I read this particular story, as part of an online English course, that I took online during the summer months. The name of the course, was titled "Literature by Women"; and it covered different genres of writings, by women of all different nationalities.
I found this story to be very heartfelt and thought-provoking. It made me put myself in the shoes of an black woman, that was an slave many years ago. Her words were so poignant, that they at times was hard to read. It angered me that an woman would have to endure soo much, just because of her nationality and the time period, that she was born.
I feel as though if anyone wants to read an thought-provoking story, they should read the words of Jacobs. This story most likely offers an true account of what many slaves over the centuries, probably had to endure at the hands of an master and/or oversear. This woman and many others, did not have anyone standing up for them. They probably had to endure countless tragedies, like having their children taken from them and/or being raped by an white man. This is what probably led to many mulatto children being born in the south.


The articles that make up the "Federalist/Anti-Federalist papers" can be summarized as being about how two completly different parties, had opposing ideals on how much infleunce that the United States government should play in the roles of the Amercian citizens.
The Anti- Federalist papers can be summarized as being about why the Anti-Federalists believed that the country, was in an very crucial period for politics. It was interesting to read how the Anti-Federalists posed the question of "Whether or not an confederated government was the best for the United States or not?".Or put in more simpler terms, "If the thirteen United States should be reduced down to one great republic, that was governed by one legislature, and under the directions given by one exceutive and judicial; or "rather or not they should continue to be thirteen confederated republics, under the direction and control of a supreme federal head for specific defined national purposes?".
Likewise, the Federalists believed that the answer to maintaining power in the American states, "was to form an means of keeping each power in their proper places". They believed that it was of the upmost importance, for "each governmental department to be as little dependent on each other as possible".
As having been previously stated, the Americans were worried about how much power that the government should be able to exhibit. Some people felt that the government should be strict at enforcing rules and regulations. However, some people felt as though the strong government would become to similiar to the monarchy in Europe, that they people had strived to escape from.
 . One specific question, that I had about the readings was "I wonder what was going through the minds of the people in America during this time frame?. I imagine that many people were worried about how the American government was going to be formed, and what was to come about in Amercian politics.
 One connection that I had to the readings was that it reminded me of how strict the government is in in other countries.I thought about how in countries like China and North Korea, the people are pretty much limited on many aspects of their lives. For instance in China, the people are restricted on how many children that they are able to bear. Likewise in North Korea, the people are easily put to death for whatever reason, and must honor the Communist government in almost every aspect of their lives. Whenever the American people feel that they are living under an strict government in America, they should take note that many countries are living in more fear and isolation that the people in this country are.
One connection that I had to other readings, was that I remember being in high school Civics class, and having to recite the "Constitution". I can remember what an intimidating time, that that was as I tried to remember all the words. Also, in an American History course, that I have taken here on campus; we studied intensively on the similiarities and differences between the two important articles, in the Federalist and Anti-Federalists papers. I feel as though it is intriguing to read about how different parties had their own ideals concerning an important issue in American society, which is if the government should play an large role, or minor role in Amercian society.

huck finn

This novel can be summarized, as being about an adolscent boy by the name of Huckberry Finn. This boy learns how to escape from his alcoholic father, by faking his own death. This leds to Huckleberry Finn faking his own death and so beginning is journey through the Deep South, in which he seeks freedom and independence.
Along the ways on his travels, Huck meets an escaped slave by the name of Jim. It is important for the reader, to know that Jim is an wanted man. This tale tells the story of the journey of the two, as they travel along the route of the Mississippi River.
This book raises the timeless and universally issues of prejudice, bravery, and hope. This are all factors for why Huck Finn is considered to be and is still the greatest American novel of all times.
One connection that I made to this novel, in relation to other stories that were covered during this course is that race and racism were two common elements throughout the story. The usage of racist terms towards blacks was practically used on every page of the novel. This had led to many people wanting to terminate the usage of this particular word, from the pages of the novel. There have even been censored versions of the novel that have been released. However, I do not feel as though the usage of this word should be taken out of the book. This is due to the fact, that Twain was using this word, because many Americans during the time that the book was released often used this word in their vocabulary. This is showing how many Amercians during that time, felt about black peoples.
Lastly, while reading the novel, I felt as though this novel reminded me of "Incidents in the Life of an Slave Girl". This is due to the fact, that this story also showcased how blacks were often treated unfairly in the south, during this time period.