Shakespeare Blog Entry #8

For the final Shakespeare blog entry I have decided to answer the second blog topic presented:

“Blog Topic 2: In Act 1 scene 2 what image do you get of Caliban? Is he being mistreated by Prospero”

After both watching the globe theatres rendition of The Tempest and reading along with a script the image I get of Caliban is that of a man who has been broken down over time by a cruel ruler, however, from Prospero’s perspective I can understand why he would have such a disdain for Caliban as he did try to rape Miranda. From his own description of event sit sounds as if Caliban, while uninhibited by the English language was a much more peaceful living man. He was one with the island and nature itself which in a way I think was a clever way for Shakespeare to make the audience question the role that language has on society and whether it truly makes us more civilised.

I can see both sides of the argument about his treatment from Prospero. On one hand, it would be very valid to argue that Prospero is a complete tyrant. Causing immense pain and suffering to be brought upon Caliban as well as essentially stealing the island from him.
On the other hand, I can also see the argument that Caliban brought this pain and suffering upon him when he tried to rape Miranda and that Prospero is doing what he is doing out of a mix of anger, resentment and to some extent fear, fear that his daughter was almost harmed by someone he helped become the man he is today. And despite knowing what extent I would be punished by the law if I were to commit violence against someone who attempted rape on my hypothetical daughter, It would be very hard to not do so.
Which at that point I ask my own question in response to anyone viewing this. Is Prospero’s mistreatment of Caliban warranted?scene-from-shakespeare-s-the-tempest-william-hogarth-a9433965.jpg

Shakespeare Blog #2

So I didn’t realise this one was up, but here I am doing it now so let’s jump into it.

This week I chose to do a critical question:
“Explore the opening speech by Philo (lines 1-13), say what you think it means and discus why this speech is so important to the drama that unfolds hereafter”

The opening speech by Philo sets the tone for the entire play, I believe that within this opening speech Philo is telling the audience directly that Antony, a man once revered as one of the three men who helped Rome conquer many empires, has now become distracted with his love for Cleopatra and that all the attention he once had for his army is now put onto her. Philo is telling the audience to look and see, the fall of a man who once had it all.
I think this speech is so important in the drama because it shows that from the very start it would be Antony’s love for Cleopatra that will cause his downfall. It shows that maybe caring for someone, possibly to the point of obsession, can be a dangerous thing to do, essentially warning the viewer in a way, to not put all their eggs in one basket. If Antony were to keep his tactical army mind while still caring for Cleopatra is possible that Egypt would have defeated Rome in the later battles, but Antony let his emotions get the better of him and ultimately caused his demise.

 

AntCleo

American Lit – Blog #9

For this week’s blog, I wanted to talk about which writer inspired me the most out of the beats.
After reading various poems and working on them during tutorials I didn’t really have a favourite out of the lot, but after sitting down and fully listening to “Self-Portrait in a Convex Mirror by John Ashbery I knew I had a favourite.
The reason I chose Jon is that there’s something hypnotic and immersive about his poems, while I was listening to the reading I felt like I was completely zoned into and interested in the poem. This was probably due to the way it was written.
It felt more like an intriguing storybook, giving you the information you can understand on a base level straight from the start, rather than having to re-read or listen to the poem again just to understand what’s going on.
I also really enjoyed how he was able to pinpoint a certain object, in this case, a convex mirror, and write about it in a way that created a solid image within my head with a level of precision I rarely get to experience from poetry.

I always love reading authors that are able to entrance a reader and fully immerse them within their writings, and John Ashbery managed to do that for me.

I give John 5 ‘scruffy beat beards’ out of 5.

American Literature – Blog 8

For this blog I wanted to try the first creative question, of making a voice for someone I don’t know, for this I wanted to use a guy I saw while I was on the train coming home from the city, he was probably in his mid 40’s early 50’s, he looked quite worn down in his old suit and old leather brief case. When I overheard him he was talking on the phone to someone, he said “dear” and “What did your mum say?” so I’m assuming he was talking to his daughter in her late teens. He looked fed up of the conversation as if he’s had it multiple times before.

Saying all that, let’s begin, shall we?

Every time her mother says no she rings me.
“Dad can I go to so and so’s house tonight?”
“Dad can I borrow some money?”
“Dad can you give me a lift to my friends?”
Now don’t get me wrong, I love my daughter, and I would do anything for her, but after being at work all day, the last thing I want to do is drive 30 minutes each way to bloody Susan’s house. I keep telling her she needs to get her P’s.
“Do your hours with your mum after School.” I keep telling her, but her response is always the same.
“No, mum always nags me when I’m driving, she made me go 20kms under the limit last time!’
Why kids have to do so many bloody hours for the P’s I don’t know. She keeps telling me “dad everyone else fakes their hours why can’t I?”
“If everyone else also jumped off a cliff would you?” I often reply dryly.
I don’t want to be the bad guy, and neither does her mum, but I know im only asked if mum says no because in her words “Dad always lets me!”
One day she’ll learn that her mum just wants what is best for her, but until then, I guess I’m stuck driving to bloody Susans…

 

 

American Literature – Blog 7

So for this blog I wanted to respond to Mina Loy’s quote “unconditional surgical destruction of virginity”.

After reading her Feminist manifesto I hope I understood this quote in the context she meant, if not please correct me.
I understood this quote as essentially saying, we need to destroy the importance we put behind virginity, I got this from a later section which reads:

“The value of man is assessed entirely according to his use or interest to the community, the value of woman depends entirely on chance, her success or in success in maneuvering a man into taking the life-long responsibility of her”

If this is the case, I think that outside of religious contexts that the importance on virginity is practically gone already.  I know personally, I couldn’t care less about someone’s sexual status as it has no bearing on myself. If a woman wants to sleep with men before marriage then I don’t see anything wrong with this, I believe everyone should have full permissions over their body, as long as those permissions do not endanger another person or being.

American Literature Blog – 6

So this week we looked at both Robert Frost and Robert Lowell, two American poets, and due to this I wanted t answer the first question, “Write a paragraph that says succinctly which of the two Roberts you preferred and for what reasons.”

It took me a while to decide on which of these two poets I actually liked more as I think both of them write some amazing poetry, however, after reading “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening” I knew I had to choose Frost. On first read I really enjoyed this piece, but when we deconstructed it in the tutorials it made me appreciate the piece even more. I love how Frost leaves his poems ambiguous to its true meaning, how there can be so many different interpretation’s of one piece of work, how at the same time it can be both a poem of nature and escaping society while at the same time could be read as a dark poem about death or suicide. To me, deconstructing and analysing shows, games, books etc. is something that I find extremely engaging and satisfying, and Frost’s poems seem to lend better to this kind of analytical mind set. I’m usually am not a big fan of poetry, but Robert Frost has definitely changed my opinion of poetry.

American Literature Blog – 5

So I’ve been struggling to keep up with these blogs due to a combination of essays, placement and illness but I’m hoping to catch up asap.

For this entry, I wanted to try answer what I believe this statement from Du Bois means “The problem of the Twentieth Century is the problem of the color-line”.

I believe Du Bois is referring to the racial divide that can still be seen within America even today. During Du Bois’s time, he would have seen the segregation of the black and white community first hand. Unfortunately for Du Bois, he would have not seen an America free from legal segregation as he passed away a year before segregation was outlawed.
While segregation has been abolished and racial relations have improved over time the pain of the past can still be seen in present America with various groups popping up in recent years, from white nationalists to the BLM movement, largely due to the rise of Donald Trump’s Republican party.

I’d like to pop in my own 2 cents at this part to say that any group/person that tries to justify the use of violence as a retaliation to having their feelings hurt by words are wrong. And as long as we continue to demonize and refuse to see those who oppose our political, ideological, and cultural beliefs as people but instead label them as the enemy, no process will be made in defusing the violence. It is only through discussion that we can solve our problems, Violence just breeds violence. If groups have clashing thoughts, talk to them, find out why they believe what they believe and actually listen to what they have to say. Because if we don’t do this, horrible instances like what happened at Charlottesville, Virginia will continue to occur.

For this entry, I decided to review Charles’ discovery of his “Soft Gold”.

https://charleslilienthal.wordpress.com/2017/05/09/week-9-topic-4/

Hey Charles,

Sorry for the late review but better late than never ey?
I really enjoyed reading your entry and can relate to it pretty well as I had the exact same feelings of conflict about my career and I found that coaching sport has also boosted my motivation to continue down the path of education.
I love how you straight from the bat you set the situation for the upcoming short story and provided us with how this coaching you undertook affected your mentality towards teaching. I feel like coaching Ice Hockey has also done the exact same thing for me and I would encourage anyone who is involved in a sport to give back to that community and help the next generation learn something you have a passion in.

Good luck on your teaching career path, I’m sure you will make a great teacher one day!

Adam.

Week 11 Blog.

For this final blog I wanted to answer the first question that was given to us which was to write a short paragraph stating whether I agree or disagree with this statement about Oscar Wildes play The Importance of Being Earnest.

“This play, while mocking deeply at the tribal customs of the late Victorians, has, at its heart, a wish to point the human race in the right direction: away from fraud, hypocrisy and such indecent preoccupation with material realities.”

I completely agree with the above statement when it comes to Oscar Wildes The Importance of Being Earnest. While the play may seem like it is making fun of the rich in the Victorian era it does it in a playful way, It doesn’t come out and say that these people are horrible or what they do is evil, but instead takes there materialistic passion into such a concentrated state but us as the viewer cant help but see how over the top and absurd some people are while at the same time placing it in a relatable context. For example the segment wse watched that teased marriage. While I think most people can agree that marriage is a huge commitment within someones life, and usually when asking friends or family on when you should propose the response is often “when you know she will say yes.” this is for obvious reasons, one of which most likely due to the cost of a wedding ring. Wilde knows this and constantly points out how silly it is that the only time someone is actually willing to ask the question is when there already positive that they know the answer. This is done by Gwendolen Fairfax constantly reminding John (Ernest) that he actually has to say “will you marry me?” despite her already saying she would marry him. It should be the act of forming a marriage that is special rather than the actual words that are said or the ring that is given.

Week 10 Blog.

You are stuck in a snow storm (or a sand storm), or you are lost in the bush. Describe your last moments. How will you react?

 

Ive decided to slightly tweak the question above and answer in more of a “what should you do” kind of method if you are stuck in a snowstorm in modern times so keep that in mind. I know when most people think of these scenarios most people are optimistic they would survive but honestly if I was caught in a big snowstorm I don’t think the chances of surviving would be that high (especially since I’ve dealt with snow maybe 2-3 times in my life.) However, saying that there are a couple of things I know you can do to increase the likelihood of surviving.

The scenario – You were driving along on your way to visit some friends when suddenly the snow storm hits, You knew it would be snowing tonight but not this bad. As you go to take a corner your car hits a patch of black ice, causing you to slide, lose control and veer off into a ravine. You and your car are miles away from anywhere, the closest town is 50kms in either direction, you’re not going to be making that walk, your only option is to wait the night out.

1. Stay calm! – This is super important, everyone knows the moment you start freaking out is the moment you start becoming irrational and making really bad decisions. You stuck in this snowstorm. accept that fact, you cannot change it, you can, however, change what you’re going to do to maximise the chances of your survival.

2. Keep covered – I’m assuming in this scenario you would have known you were going to be in snow so you are wearing snow appropriate attire. Make sure to keep your body covered in all the clothing you have.

3. Run the car – Run your car for about 10 minutes every hour, This is going to keep everything from freezing up, and who wouldn’t want 10 minutes of full blast heating?

4. Try ring for help – If you have reception (high chance you won’t) ring for help. If not conserve battery on your phone, turn off all the apps and set it to power saving mode.

5. Insulate yourself – If you have any books in your car its time to use the paper, yes it will suck ripping out all the pages from books but your life is much more important. Rip the pages out and scrunch them into balls, place these between your clothing layers (if you don’t have more than just a shirt on, place them within your shirt). This is going to help insulate your body and help you keep your body heat.

6. Try to stay active – try and stay active, obviously, you can’t do a whole bunch inside the car but try to keep your body moving, this is going to keep your body temperature up.

7. Don’t eat raw snow – Don’t eat raw snow, this will drastically lower your core temperature and the whole idea of this is to survive. You can, however, melt snow to drink to stay hydrated. You can do this if you have a bottle, put snow in it and have it between your legs or body and use your body temperature to warm it up.

8. Keep hydrated – make sure to keep hydrated, use that melted snow as a water supply.

9. Stay positive – You need to stay positive, keep telling yourself you are going to survive if you loose the hope or will to survive then chances are your probably not going to survive.