« Diamond Age Part Two | Main | Utopia Obsolete? »

April 18, 2006

Diamond Age Part Three

Stephenson, Diamond Age 3 -- Jerz: Intro to Literary Study (EL150)

"...has made you differnet from any other girl I have ever taught. I wonder what you suppose you will do with your life when you this Academy."
This encouraged Nell to do something different with her life then graduate from the Academy and study art programming and become one of the Majesty's subjects. Miss Matheson knows that she has potential to step out of the box, she doesnt need to bosom anymore. Nell can make it on her own.
Nell then discovers and tells Constable that she doesnt want to be simple-minded liek the Vickys. She was to leave and find her fate that is somewhere out there waiting for her to find it.
I think that there is something for all of us waiting in the world for us. It could be at home, at SHU or somewhere else and you need to find it to make you happy.

Finkle-McGraw's idea of the primer was to have the young women read it and become another member of his hypocrisy society. Nell, however discovers the main purpose of the Primer so know she wants to find her fortune. I think that the Primer was a great asset to Nell in the sense that it was a security and a mother to her. It helped her along her journey to woman-hood.
On page 332, Finkle-McGraw describes what it means when one decides to leave the Primer and the Vicky way of life. "It means that they ahve outgrown youthful credulity and no longer wish to belong to a tribe simpy because it is the path of least resistance---they have developed principles, they are concerned with their personal integrity...they develop wisdom."
This in a way describes what helped Nell chose to go on her lifetime journey and find her fate.
"She is the most promising young lady."
I think that since she had such a rough, hard life that it pushed her more to become something different than what people expected her to become. She worked hard with a little help here and there but was independent. The Primer was like a mother to her and now it is time for her to leave her mother and discover who she really is. I think that is what college is, a time to discover who you are and who you want to be. A time of happiness, change, work and fun.

This is a motivational story because of what Nell does in the specific time period and what is expected. Do what makes you happy.

Posted by Denamarie at April 18, 2006 01:07 PM

Trackback Pings

TrackBack URL for this entry:


I totally agree with you when you are speaking about Nell. As a reader, we are able to see Nell grow and change throughout the five hundred pages in which we have read. In the beginning of the book Nell was still a little child who would watch her brother work on the M.C. As she gets older, she begins asking questions to the primer and begins growing on her own. She is able to take on an adventure. I'll agree with you when you say that she has had a hard life. I really dislike Nell's father. He seems like he treats his family in such a cruel way. He seems to be the type of father that would never be around to care for his children or family...only worried abotu himself. Nell has definately had a hard life; however, the primer helps her get through her mishaps and kind of brings this magical essence to her life.

Posted by: Elyse Branam at April 18, 2006 01:50 PM

Excellent point, Dena. Education is supposed to prepare you to leave the nest, so to speak. When you're bored with a game, it's because it's gotten too difficult to be rewarding, or you've learned all it can teach. I'd like to talk about Nell's encounter with King Coyote in class, since the book's shift from narrative to "ractive" mode is training Nell to work to solve problems on her own.

Something I've often wondered about the primer is that because Nell has the luxury of going back and re-doing passages that didn't turn out well, does that accurately prepare her for a life in the real world, where you don't get to hit "reset" and try again.

Posted by: Dennis G. Jerz at April 18, 2006 05:45 PM

I think that her being able to go back was a lesson to her to see what she could have done better. It teaches her different ways to deal with a certain situation. I do think that she is very lucky to have that luxury. I wish i could have it.

Posted by: Denamarie Ercolani at April 18, 2006 08:33 PM

There are so many times I wish I had a re-do. I think problem-solving is an important part of learning, so Denamarie, you're right. I wish we had Primers for college. Like you said though, college is our primer for the real world. We are learning how to be more independent than we were in high school. We have so many more choices and by making mistakes, we learn to make the right ones in the future.

Posted by: Erin Waite at April 18, 2006 08:47 PM

Post a comment

Remember Me?