AshleyPascoe: February 2009 Archives

What if all I want is just a drink of water?

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 Foster presents the idea that everytime water is seen in a piece of literature, it symbolizes something.  I always new water had meaning in books, but I never reallly considered that rain or a character taking a drink of water could symbolize something as well.  Another idea that Foster brought up which I have never considered was that when there is a lack of water in a story, that symbolizes something as well.  This got me to thinking about people sailing on the ocean.  When they are out at sea, they have PLENTY of water around them, but non of it is drinkable water (unless they are sailing in a fresh water ocean).  If that's the case in a piece of literature, what could that possiblly symbolize?

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In Chapter 8, Foster focuses on where todays writers will and should pull their quotes and refrences from.  As a writer, you want something that most generations will understand, even future generations.  For example, Ghostbusters is a movie mostly everyone nowadays knows, however, will our children understand a refrence made to this movie? Maybe, maybe not.  The safest bet, according to Foster, is a popular children's story such as Sam I Am or The Little Mermaid because these are stories that everyone knows and our children will know and so on.  If we use the basis, or even simply hint at the idea of one of those tales, a writers work will have a better shot at lasting through the ages, or even being seen as a literary classic.

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In Chapter 3, Foster introduces the idea that vampires and ghosts are more than they appear.  While reading or watching movies, I've always seen them symbolizing sex and impurity due to the era in which they were first created.  However, Foster also introduces the idea that they can symbolize other ideas as well.  In the beginning of the chapter he states, "But it's (Vampirism) also about things other than literal vampirism: selfishness, exploitation, a refusal to respect the autonomy of other people..." 

He continued on saying that ghosts aren't simply characters to make the reader think that another character is insane or implying something sexual.  For example, he says that in The Turn of the Screw by Henry James, the story plot can symbolize "fatherly neglect" rather than the ghost of a man haunting a woman, and symbolizing something sexual.  I really like how this chapter got into the other things than "taking away a woman's usefulness". 

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Slow and steady wins the race!

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The entire third chapter of this book is about this poor little turtle trying his best to make it up a hill!  Of course most everyone feels bad for the helpless little turtle, but I'm sure that we all started wondering why there was a whole chapter based on this seemingly insignificant creature.  I'm sure this poor little guy symbolizes and foreshadows something...but the question is what does it mean. 

The first thing I thought of was the story about the tortise and the hare.  At the time, I wasn't too sure what that would have to do with anything in the story of The Grapes of Wrath (I've never read this book yet) but the further I read, the more I believe that these two stories have a connection.  There is a connection in the story between the turtle and the family because we feel sympathy for both of them.  Also, they are both forced to move against their will.  If we consider the possibility of foreshadowing using the story of the tortise and the hare, maybe in the end, even though things are going down hill and moving slowly for the family, they will be happier and better off at the end of the story.

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Make it POP!

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I think one of the most important things that an internet site needs is color.  Color does so many things for something thats pretty simple to add.  Adding color will grab someone's attention, help hold that attention (because they won't get bored looking at a bland and lifeless page), make things stand out the the reader, and over make their experience better.  This will help create a larger and more reliable reader/fan base.

 

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What is that supposed to mean???

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"Listen to your instincts.  Pay attention to waht you feel about the test.  It probably means something." Foster Pg. 107

     I really liked how Foster began the chapter off by stating that there is never only one meaning behind symbolism found in pieces of literature.  He says "Seriously, what do you think it stands for, because that's probably what it does.  At least for you."  I love that this point is the main focus he bases the rest of the chapter on.  He says that this difference in perception is due to seperate people bringing several different personal experiences to the table.  This makes for excellent class room conversations.  I love hearing what other people get from reading the same passage.

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Grow up Gatsby!!!

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While reading the rest of the Great Gatsby, I started thinking about what the story really means, outside of what the text says.  I think that, possibly, Fitzgerald wanted to convey to his readers that there comes a point in everyone's lives where we need to "come back down to reality" and eventually let go of our extravagant dreams.  The main factor that convinced me of this is the differences between Gatsby and Nick.  Nick always seemed to be more down to Earth than Gatsby.  In the beginning of the book Nick left the life he knew to fulfill his dreams, even thought they weren't all too extravagant.  In the end of the story Nick begins to realize that his new life isn't all it was cracked up to be.  In contrast, Gatsby never really seemed to "grow up".  At one point he even stated that he could gladly continue living in the past.  Because of this, Gatsby doesn't seem to be able to really continue his life.  Fitzgerald made those two characters opposites to prove his point that if we are able to accept the fact that we won't achieve all of our dreams (Nick) we will be able to continue on with our lives.  In contrast, if we do not let go of those dreams, we will be constantly living in the past which blocks us from moving any further in our daily lives (Gatsby).

Recent Comments

Carissa Altizer on Now the snarfblatt dates back to prehysterical times when humans used to sit around and stare at each other all day. Got very boring. So they invented this snarfblatt to make fine music~Scuttle, The Little Mermaid: I'm not as concerned with Disn
Aja Hannah on Now the snarfblatt dates back to prehysterical times when humans used to sit around and stare at each other all day. Got very boring. So they invented this snarfblatt to make fine music~Scuttle, The Little Mermaid: Sometimes the love isn't at fi
Jessie Krehlik on Now the snarfblatt dates back to prehysterical times when humans used to sit around and stare at each other all day. Got very boring. So they invented this snarfblatt to make fine music~Scuttle, The Little Mermaid: Josie--good point about Disney
Dennis G. Jerz on Now the snarfblatt dates back to prehysterical times when humans used to sit around and stare at each other all day. Got very boring. So they invented this snarfblatt to make fine music~Scuttle, The Little Mermaid: Sigourney Weaver as Ripley. Jo
Josie Rush on Now the snarfblatt dates back to prehysterical times when humans used to sit around and stare at each other all day. Got very boring. So they invented this snarfblatt to make fine music~Scuttle, The Little Mermaid: I sometimes worry about the me
Ashley Pascoe on Now the snarfblatt dates back to prehysterical times when humans used to sit around and stare at each other all day. Got very boring. So they invented this snarfblatt to make fine music~Scuttle, The Little Mermaid: Actually, Mulan was a princess
Kayla Lesko on Now the snarfblatt dates back to prehysterical times when humans used to sit around and stare at each other all day. Got very boring. So they invented this snarfblatt to make fine music~Scuttle, The Little Mermaid: I still don't get why Mulan is
Karyssa Blair on Get used to disappointment!~Westley, The Princess Bride: You know, your second point is
Brooke Kuehn on Iocane comes from Australia,as everyone knows.And Australia is entirely peopled with criminals.And criminals are used to having people not trust them,as you are not trusted by me,so I can clearly not choose the wine in front of you.~Vizini,Princess Bride: Actually, i did mean Scoresby.
Ashley Pascoe on Iocane comes from Australia,as everyone knows.And Australia is entirely peopled with criminals.And criminals are used to having people not trust them,as you are not trusted by me,so I can clearly not choose the wine in front of you.~Vizini,Princess Bride: Actually, we do know that the