DJ Beckage

Archive for February, 2011

Supporting Evidence

by on Feb.24, 2011, under Uncategorized

A valuable tool to gaining supporting evidence in a reading is deep reading.  A quick skim of the material will not suffice when trying to gain material in defense of your argument.  As a reader, you must be able to take the reading and extrapolate what the story is trying to tell its audience and to do so, you will have to read the piece several times.  Multiple readings of the material help to cement the basis of your argument because you are able to more quickly reference the material without having to guess at what page the facts are located.  This also shows you have a basic knowledge of the material versus a half-hearted attempt at the material.

via Supporting Evidence.

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An awkward use of words – Smith, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (1-14)

by on Feb.20, 2011, under Uncategorized

In Smith, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (1-14) I noticed this passage:

“After an orgy of touching things, she made her planned purchase – five cents’ worth of pink-and-white peppermint wafers.”

I thought the use of the term “orgy” was odd, mainly because of today’s connotation in which it is used, and especially when it’s used to describe the actions of an eleven-year-old girl.  The word isn’t used incorrectly, mind you, but it does make me think of the word in its sexual connotation after reading about how Gimpy inveigled another little girl into his dismal back room.

via Smith, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (1-14).

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Machinal – free write…

by on Feb.17, 2011, under Uncategorized

At our table, we discussed how we were all unsympathetic to the young woman after both her adultery and the murder of her husband.  This woman conjured no form of sympathy from me because she had all these choices and still chose to go down the path of marriage and a family.

One of the things that really opened my eyes a little bit was Greg’s comment about the young lady being looked upon as a Christ figure.  When she asks her mother to raise her daughter and the shadow of the plane as a cross image, I thought was an outstanding observation about the character and the possibilities of having sympathy for her.  Yes, she cheated and yes, murdered her husband but there seemed to eek out a small portion of humanity that she had for her daughter in the end.

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Portfolio 1

by on Feb.17, 2011, under Uncategorized

I have to admit that doing a blog portfolio is probably on of the last things I thought I’d be doing in my American Literature class.  Now, mind you, I’m not complaining about it.  Just merely stating a fact.  I had a pretty good idea that I’d be reading American Literature from 1915 to today just by a simple divination of the course title.  That’s where I got caught.  I assumed from the title of the course one thing and got something completely different.

With all that said, I do have to admit that the blogging portion of the course has been quite enlightening.  I have read in previous classes before but with this class, being able to take what you have read and then produce a public journal entry for the everyone to see is truly entertaining for me.  You put an idea out to the world that says “Look at me!  Right or wrong, I have an opinion and it matters!”

So, we now move into my blog portfolio:

Depth: For this portion, I’ve tried to stay pretty concise with my blogs, mainly because I was thinking the blogs were simply being used as stepping stones to get out to the center of the discussion pond.  With that said, the blog I think that most represents my depth would be my blog from “The Ice Palace.”

Interaction: With this portion, I show that I can play nice with all the other boys and girls in the class.  HA!  It has been fun reading the different blogs in the class.  Getting that new perspective that may not be verbalized in class is great.

Discussion:  I’ve really enjoyed applying what we’ve talked about in class to a blog entry.  And the “agree to disagree” activity was really quite fun.

Timeliness: I’ve been pretty spot on with getting my blogs in.  Way to go, time stamps! And another!

Coverage: I can say that I’ve had a grand time going over the readings and working their multiple angles.

via Portfolio 1.

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A Disagreement in Pity – With a partner, agree to disagree.

by on Feb.15, 2011, under Uncategorized

In our table, we discussed whether or not we had pity for Yank at the end of the play.  While the group did have a feeling of pity for Yank, I disagreed.  Their point was that Yank didn’t fit in anywhere and that he was searching for places to fit in.  Once he’s unable to fit in, he moves on to another location.  Finally at the end of the story, Yank has no one but the gorilla at the zoo that he feels he can find commonality with.  Once he releases the gorilla, however, the gorilla shows that he has nothing in common with Yank and kills him before fleeing the zoo.

My stance was that Yank was undeserving of pity because he refused to change.  Yank was stuck in his ways and refused to move (or be moved) by anyone and if someone did insult him, he allowed this anger and revenge consume him entirely.  That is the case with his pursuit of Mildred and seeking revenge on her.  Even in scene five, Long tries to explain to Yank how to address the rich people to get a positive reaction but Yank bulldozes through the crowd, trying to get them to fight him.  By the end of the story, Yank no longer has any real human connection with anyone and finds himself reflecting on his life to a gorilla.  Yank refuses to evolve and in that way, when he releases the gorilla and is killed by the gorilla, it shows finality in his plight.  Yank’s death goes without pity or sympathy because there are no humans that he has ever made a true connection with and therefore, leaves the reader devoid of those same feelings.

Korrin Kovacevic’s blog perspective

via With a partner, agree to disagree..

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Foster, Interlude-12

by on Feb.15, 2011, under Uncategorized

In Foster, Interlude-12 I noticed this passage:

“Here’s the problem with symbols: people expect them to mean something.  Not just any something, but one something in particular.”

I found this passage interesting because  it’s coming from an english professor acknowledging that a symbol doesn’t have to mean just one thing or that there is a “right answer” to what a symbol represents.

via Foster, Interlude-12.

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Realizing what I am a little too late – O’Neill, “The Hairy Ape”

by on Feb.15, 2011, under Uncategorized

In O’Neill, “The Hairy Ape” I noticed this passage:

Ladies and gents, step forward and take a slant at de one and only—(His voice weakening)—one and original—Hairy Ape from de wilds of—(He slips in a heap on the floor and dies. The monkeys set up a chattering, whimpering wail. And, perhaps, the Hairy Ape at last belongs.)

I really liked this passage because it shows Yank facetiously accepting his role as the insult he rebelled against throughout the play.  It also really struck me that after he dies, O’Neill makes it a point to say that the monkeys begin to wail over the death of Yanks.  And as the last line reads, he finally found a place that he belonged.

via O’Neill, “The Hairy Ape”.

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Commonality – Poetry and Culture

by on Feb.10, 2011, under Uncategorized

At our table, we discussed the poem by Georgia Douglas Johnson’s “Common Dust.” From the reading, I saw that the narrator was taking a stance of “Who has the right or authority to say who is deserving and who is not? Who has the right to say I’m better than someone or lesser than someone?”

I see this come right out of the gate of the poem when the question is posed “And who shall separate the dust / What later we shall be: / Whose keen discerning eye will scan / And solve the mystery?” She’s posing the question of “Who is in charge of these ‘rules’ because I wasn’t made aware of them and I’d like to know.”

The idea that she’s asking the question and then explaining her view of society about how everyone is equal and she compares us all to dust. We start out as dust and the soil of the Earth (born) and then we die and become dust again. All the same.

via Poetry and Culture.

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Dust in the Wind – Harlem Renaissance Poems (Various)

by on Feb.10, 2011, under Uncategorized

In Harlem Renaissance Poems (Various) I noticed this passage from Georgia Douglas Johnson’s poem “Common Dust”:

Can one then separate the dust? / Will mankind lie apart, / When life has settled back again / The same as from the start?”

I found this section interesting because it truly give you a moment to think about the finality of death.  You are given a chance to look at your own mortality and question what happens after you die.  The poem also ends by pointing out that we are all from the same dust; we started there and we’ll end up there when we pass on.  I just really liked this poem.

via Harlem Renaissance Poems (Various).

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Tension in mine and another’s passage…

by on Feb.08, 2011, under Uncategorized

Where I saw the beginning of the narrator’s tension started on line 37:

37) And indeed there will be time
38) To wonder, “Do I dare?” and, “Do I dare?”
39) Time to turn back and descend the stair,
40) With a bald spot in the middle of my hair –
41) (They will say: ‘How his hair is growing thin!”)
42) My morning coat, my collar mounting firmly to the chin,
43) My necktie rich and modest, but asserted by a simple pin –
44) (They will say: “But how his arms and legs are thin!”)
45) Do I dare
46) Disturb the universe?
47) In a minute there is time
48) For decisions and revisions which a minute will reverse.

The tension I saw was inside the narrator and his thoughts about getting older and the world’s perception of him in getting older.  He already doesn’t have a very high opinion of himself, including even the clothes that he wears, and now is more afraid that this ugly self image is translating out more and more to his public image.

With the COMMENT below mine, they posted:

129) We have lingered in the chambers of the sea

130) By sea-girls wreathed with seaweed red and brown

131) Till human voices wake us, and we drown.

This section came across to me that he (the narrator) was dreaming or has dreams but, again, because of his low opinion, these mermaids will have nothing to do with him and when he is awoken (whether that’s a literal or metaphorical waking), he’s back in the world that he doesn’t like or that doesn’t like him.

via Tension.

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