April 2007 Archives
Kennedy, "Shakespare's King Lear" -- Jerz: EL150 (Intro to Literary Study)
"In the thirteenth, fourteenth, and fifteenth century depictions of the Green Man, the relationship between human and vegetative is often suggested as hostile-'sometimes the leaves appear parasitic,' drawing their strength from the head which bears them (Basford 116)."
Wow. There is so much historical and mythological allusions in not only Shakespeare, but almost any literary masterpiece ever written. It helps to know the historical background of the time period that a particular work was written and also the background of the author's life for a reader to fully appreciate and understand what they are reading. Though I got a lot out of Lear, there is so much that I missed because of all that I don't know about the history of the time period in which it was written. This article helped me to realize just how much I missed.
Shakespeare, King Lear Acts 3-5 -- Jerz: EL150 (Intro to Literary Study)
"A man may see how this world/goes with no eyes. Look upon thine ears. See how/yond justice rails upon yond simple theif. Hark in/thine ear. Change places and, handy-dandy, which/is the justice, which is the thief?"
I think metaphorical blindness is definitely a huge underlying theme, or message, of King Lear. So many of the characters go around throughout the play "blind" to what they don't want to see, doing their own thing, and, consequently, hurting those around them, sometimes even themselves. Lear is blind to Cordelia's true love for him because he is too stubborn to accept anything but what he wants, which is an elaborate, passionate speech or declaration of deep, devotional, and abiding love. He doesn't see that Goneril and Regan are just saying those things to make him happy so that they may satisfy their own selfish agendas. Edgar is blind to Edmund's scheme against him, wanting to see the good in everyone, subconsciously blinding the evil in Edmund from himself, and not realizing it until much later. Gloucester is blind to Edmund's true intentions as well. When he is later blinded literally by Regan and Cornwall, it is meant to be an eye-opener (pardon the pun) to the rest of the characters to their own various blindnesses.
Shakespeare, King Lear Acts 1,2 -- Jerz: EL150 (Intro to Literary Study)
"I do profess to be no less than I seem, to serve/him truly that will put me in trust, to love him that/is honest, to converse with him that is wise and says/little, to fear judgement, to fight when I cannot/choose, and to eat no fish."
Kent is my favorite character in this whole play. He follows Lear regardless of his [Lear's] actions lack of mental sanity or logical thinking. He shows what it means to be a friend in this literary world created by Shakespeare where it seems no one is a friend to anyone, where fathers turn on daughters, sister against sister, brother against brother, wife against husband. Kent's honesty, fowardness, and loyalty are the very kind of admirable qualities we look for in people in our own society today. His humanity makes it very easy to relate to him, and his chivalrous deeds throughout the play make one want to aspire to his persona.
Zunder, "Shakespeare and the End of Feudalism..." -- Jerz: EL150 (Intro to Literary Study)
"France himself is an embodiment of the disregard for material gain that Shakespeare represents as characteristic ofo the old culture. He will marry Cordelia for love not wealth."
I've read a good many plays by Shakespeare, and being a hopeless romantic, I always pay special attention to the love scenes. Though quite small, and, as I used to think, unimportant in comparison to the rest of the play, the small exchange between Cordelia, France, and Lear in which France claims Cordelia for his bride, has always seemed, to me, to be one of the purest love scenes in the Shakespearean anthology. In most of Shakespeare's other plays, the love scenes, though sweet and satisfying to any romantic's heart, consist mainly of doting on one another's beauty, strength, heroism, wealth, etc. However, in King Lear, this is not the case. France loves Cordelia for herself, the person that she is, her honesty, and her virtues. I'm glad Zunder gave France the credit that I always think this small part in the play deserves because every time I read it, I am so moved by the words he speaks to Cordelia and to Lear.
Portfolio 2 -- Jerz: EL150 (Intro to Literary Study)
This is the second blog portfolio for EL150: Intro to Literary Study. Included in this portfolio are all the agenda items and entries posted by myself since February 21. Also in this portfolio are all the entries on which I have commented and blogs that have prompted class discussions.
Since the first portfolio, I have become more comfortable with blogging. I must admit it is just as much of a hassle as it ever was, especially when it comes to getting it done on time, but it is a good thing to have to communicate with classmates on an academic level as well as to promote discussions in the classroom.
Coverage: This section contains links to all the entries for all the readings since the last portfolio up until now.
Depth: This section contains links to the entries I felt I really made a connection to the readings with.
Interaction: This section contains links to comments that I have left on fellow classmates' blog entries.
Discussion: This section contains links to all the blogs that have sparked online or classroom discussions
Timeliness: This section contains links to blogs that I have posted on time, as in before the day we are actually due to have the discussion. I don't think I have ever posted one twenty-four hours before a class, which is pretty sad, so I'm sorry.
Xenoblogging: This section has links to all the blogs that I was the first to leave a comment on.
The reason I chose this entry for my wild card is because I got a lot out of Eats, Shoots & Leaves and found it really easy to relate to and fun to read. I like to think I did some of my best blogging on that book.
O'Connor, "Good Country People" -- Jerz: EL150 (Intro to Literary Study)
"'He was so simple,' she said, 'but I guess the world would be better off if we were all that simple.'"
Good country people are not all simple
Take Bible-toting Pointer into mind
Were we all to follow his example
Our world would be a very different kind
O'Connor (Choose One of Three) -- Jerz: EL150 (Intro to Literary Study)
"It was not possible to tell if the artificial Negro were meant to be young or old; he looked to miserable to be either."
"They were grandfather and grandson but they looked enough alike to be brothers and brothers not too far apart in age, for Mr. Head had a youthful expression by daylight, while the boy's look was ancient, as if he knew everything already and would be pleased to forget it."
In Flannery O'Connor's The Artificial Nigger, an old man and a young boy venture into the city of Atlanta for a day, and on their journey come to realizations about themselves. The statue of the Negro man that Mr. Head and Nelson stumble across on their way back to the train station represents both grandfather and grandson. Though once they thought they had so little in common with one another, they realized they were not so very different. The statue was both Mr. Head and Nelson as individuals, but also together, the same person. It took this journey into the city and all the trials they endured there together to show them what had always been right in front of their faces.
EL150: Intro to Literary Study
Dr. Dennis Jerz
Reflection on Desmond�s Article
April 1, 2007
Equations in Literature
I have never resorted to using math in order to help me relate to something in literature, and I must admit, the concept freaks me out a little bit. In Diana�s blog, she took a totally different angle on Desmond�s article. The message she got from Desmond was, �See no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil.� I never would have thought to look at O�Connor�s A Good Man Is Hard To Find in that way, but Diana had it all mapped out in her blog, and it was very easy to follow. She related her thesis to an equation described in Desmond�s article and then elaborated on it, evil + evil = evil x 2. I thought this was a very interesting way to look at it.
Desmond, ''Flannery O'Connor's Misfit and the Mystery of Evil.'' -- Jerz: EL150 (Intro to Literary Study)
"Her lying and selfishness lead directly to the accident and the subsequent murder of her family. Her self-image as a "good" woman is stripped from her.
In one part of Desmond's article, Desmond talks about the Grandmother and how she was the ultimate cause of her family's deaths, as well as her own. The Grandmother went through the whole story, right through to the end, claiming to be a good Christian woman and a well-brought up lady. If the Grandmother had been a true Christian, she never would have lied and deceived her son into turning off the road that led to their deaths. If she were a "true lady," according to the time period in which she was raised, she never would have called out to a complete stranger in the manner that she addressed the Misfit and admitted recognizing a cold-blooded killer to his face. That's all I have to say about that.