Wednesday, February 11, 2009

TEWWG Socratic seminar questions

Brian Callan & Alexis Myers

1. How is TEWWG a story about a black woman searching for her identity in a southern, man's world?

2. On page 10, Janie kisses Johnny Taylor. How is this event the introduction into the rest of the story and how does it shape her relationships with other men?

3. Does Jody feel insecure about Janie? Consider how he makes her wear a head rag in the store.

4. Why does Janie remarry several times? Could this be because of her age or her experience?

5. On page 91, the novel addresses’ that Janie does not mourn the death of Jody. Why is Janie easily able to move on?

6. How are Jody and Tea Cake different? and how is Janie’s relationship with each one of them different?

7. How do the things that happened to Janie’s mother and grandmother shape her future?

8. How does Janie’s grandmother pushing her into early marriage affect her view on love, relationships and men?

9. How are each of the places that Janie lives throughout her life important to her as and individual and to her marriages?

10.Why is important that Janie returns to Eatonville?

11. How is the difference in Janie's community from other black communities that shapes the way she sees the world?

12. How does the title tie into the concepts in the book and the way Hurston explores Janie's take on religion?

13. Does Janie compare the bee and the pear blossom to the way she wants to live her life?

14. What are the major events that help Janie come out of her long silence?

15. On page __, what does the dog represent to Janie?

16. On page 8: "Janie saw her life like a great tree in leaf with the things suffered, things enjoyed, things done and undone. Dawn and doom was in the branches." How does this quote represent the things that happen in Janie's past, present and future?

17. Jody says on page 41 about Janie "She's a woman and her place is in the home" how does this represent the views men have about gender roles?

18. "Ships at a distance have every mans wish on board..." How does this quote contribute to the theme of gender?

19. Does Tea Cake complete Janie's wishes about life and love?

20. "Listen, Sam, if it was nature, nobody wouldn't have tuh look out for babies touchin' stoves, would they?" What does this quote address about the role of religion and God in the lives of the characters in the book?

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Poetry writing prompt

The author of the poem Here, Philip Larkin uses many different types of literary techniques to convey his attitude toward the places described in the poem. Larkin's tone, diction, meter, imagery the mood the Larkin creates in the reader are all very important techniques that Larkin uses to express his attitude. Most important amont these are Larkin's diction, imagery and the mood that he creates.

The diction, or choice and arrangement of the authors words, is vital to the overall attitude that the author has to the place he is describing. The way the author describes the places in the poem by using words like "harsh named" (l. 4) and "raw estates" (l. 12) crates a feeling in the reader that these places are desolate and sad. The diction of this pem is crucial to the overall attitude Larkin has towards the places he describes.

Imagery is another important method Larkin employs in order to convey his attitudes. The images of "thin and thisteled" (l. 3) and "grain-scattered streets" (l. 11) make the rader feel like the places the author describes are lonely, even frightening. Imagery of the locations the author describes are another extremely important way the author is able to convey his attitudes in the poem.

Through Larkin's diction, the author is able to create a unique mood in the reader. The author is able to create a sullen, downcast and depressed mood in the reader bacause of the epithets and imagery Larkin employs. The mood Larkin creates in the reader is important for conveying his message.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

The Metamorphosis Writing Prompt

In Franz Kafka's compelling science-fiction novella; The Metamorphosis, several of the characters undergo different kinds of "transformations" throughout the course of the work. The main character, Gregor Samsa, awakes one morning to discover that he has transformed into a large bug. However, the transformation of Gregor and the affecrs it has on him are not the only Metamorphosis in the story. Gregor's transformation acts as a catalyst in changing the other characters in the story. Gregor and his sister, Grete, both undergo a profound change during the story. The Metamorphosis of both characters serve to further the meaning of the story.
In the opening scene of the novella, Gregor Samsa discovers that he has been transformed int a "monstrous vermin". The story explains that Gregor has taken the responsibilities of his family onto his won shoulders. Gregor abhorres his job but his sense of duty to his family compelles him to continue working. After his physical transformation, Gregor is confined to his room and is unable to provide for his family any longer. Gregor changes mentally to to his incompasitation. Gregor feels worthless and depressed at his state. Kafka uses Gregor's physical metamorphosis to fuel his mental one and serve to further the meaning of the work. Kafka attempts to explain that life, at many times can be depressing and a terrible burden.
Grete also undergoes a transformation during this story. The metamorphosis of Gregor serves as a catalyst to the profound change in Grete. Grete begins the story as a young girl. She is forced to change by Gregor's transformation because she becomes his caregiver. Grete is forced to begin working hard, and to play violin for the roomers as well cas care for her brother. Grete grows up a lot during the story. Through Grete's "Metamorphosis", Kafka is showing that when something bad happens in your life, you must constantly grow up quickly and mature with it.
The transformations of both Gregor and Grete are important to highlight the meaning of the work. Kafka uses the changes in both characters to further his messages in the story.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

The Metamorphosis Chapter 3

The Metamorphosis Chapter 3

3. I believe that Gregor’s family moved the furniture in his room in order to give him more space to move around because they observed that he climbed on the walls a lot.

5. Gregor feels depressed at his family’s reaction to him because he now views himself as a burden to his family and the cause of their problems.

6. Gregor’s family feels relief that the bug-Gregor is gone. They are sad that their son is gone but they have viewed the real Gregor as dead since his Metamorphosis.

8. Gregor’s family has viewed him as gone since his Metamorphosis and when he dies at the end of the story, his family feels relief that the burden of the bug-Gregor is gone.

10. Grete calls Gregor a monster because of the turmoil that he has placed on the family. Gregor unintentionally causes problems and his sister has begun to view him as a burden.

12. Gregor stops eating because he has begun to lose his will to live. Gregor has given up the hope of becoming human again and now falls into depression at what he has become in his bug body.

14. Grete starts playing her violin to entertain the roomers. Earlier in the novel it is discussed that Grete is an excellent violinist and that Gregor had intended to send her to a school to further her talents.

18. Before he dies Gregor has been in his room and in his Metamorphosis for several months.

20. Grete didn’t get a job before Gregor’s Metamorphosis because she is only seventeen. Grete needs to get a job to help support her family.

21. The maid finds Gregor because none of his family members want to go into his room and care for him anymore. The family has begun to forget about Gregor and ignores him most of the time.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Writing Prompt 2 - 9/19/08

In the novel 1984, George Orwell uses the power struggle he creates between the main character and the government to enhance the meaning of the story. Orwell's leading character, Winston Smith, decides that the government is opressive and then he rebels against it in every way he can. The author uses Winston's struggle with the government pver the course of the novel to highlight the main point of the story.

Orwell first uses Winston Smith's job to enhance his meaning. Winston works for the government, constantly re-writing history and making everything the government says the truth. winston sees firsthand evidence that much of what the government says and does is completely a lie. This is very significant to the story because Winston finds at his job that the government is lying to him and opressing him, and this gives him his fist desire to rebel.

After Winston has decided that he does not like what the government is doing, he then meets Julia, a woman he will share an intimate relationship. Julia is significant to enhance the authors' meaning of the work because she, like Winston, opposes the party and their actions. Julia gives Winston the ideas that lead him to seeka larger group that will help him fight the opressive party.

Winston and Julia try to find someone else, a larger group, that can help them resist the opressive power of the government. They find a group called the Brotherhood, led by the famous enemy of the party Emmanuel Goldstein, who they believe can help them fight the party. The ideals of The Brotherhood are significant to enhancing the meaning of the story because they represent help. The Brotherhood is a group of people like Winston who want to fight the Party however they can and the Brotherhood is there to help Winston and Julia.

George Orwell is able to create a great parable between Winston Smith's struggle with the government and the meaning of his work. Orwell uses the struggle of Winston with the Party to enhance greatly what his message in the story is.