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.

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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.

Blog entry #7 Week 9.

For this post, I decided to “Describe a moment in your life where, like Marner you have been horrified, shocked by the loss of something that has been desperately dear to you. (In Marner’s case it was his gold)” since I have been recently thinking a lot about the subject of lose.

November 2nd, 2015 to most people will just be another blip in our past, most of us probably have no idea what we were doing or where we were that day. For me that day will never be forgotten, I mean, how could it? How could I possibly forget the day where I was woken up by a phone call saying “Alex..Alex died..”? After a 2-minute car ride that felt like an eternity, I was assured that this was not some terrible practical joke to get me to come over to Alex’s. As I walked through the white squeaky gate leading into the outdoor space we had spent countless nights drunkenly arguing who would win in hypothetical fights, my personal favourite was The island from Shutter Island vs the Island from Lost, any sort of hope in that the call was a prank quickly drained out of me. In front of me sat three of my closest friends, each one with their head bowed in anguish, only looking up briefly to give me a unwelcoming hug. The weight of the situation didn’t fully hit me until Alex’s parents came outside, Steve (Alex’s Dad) holding a weeping Jocelyn (Alex’s mum) in his arms, tears running down both of their cheeks. Immediately they came over to me and embraced me in a long hug. It felt like the final nail in the coffin, this wasn’t an elaborate prank, Alex was gone.

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Alex enjoying what I think was a brownie.

I had known Alex since I was 16, he was one of the funniest, most loving and caring people I ever met. He was extremely intelligent, had a knack for knowing exactly what to say and was wise beyond his years. He introduced me to Smash Brothers Melee and took his time to teach me everything he knew about the games detailed mechanics, it’s intricate metagame and would sit up at ungodly hours of the night just to watch overseas tournaments with me. He was practically my 4th unofficial roommate, and honestly, the house felt empty if he wasn’t around. He had so much passion for life despite his difficulties and was always there to give a helping hand or to make you laugh when you were down. He was truly one of my best friends and I could never thank him enough for being in my life. I’m not a religious person but I do hope he is somewhere better, and I hope I’ll get to see him again one day.

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It was the last match we ever played, Marth vs Peach on Final Destination. I guess it is fitting. The situation still hasn’t sunk completely in yet and I’m still wishing this was a shitty dream. – I posted this on his facebook wall on November 8, Marth and Princess Peach where our two main characters of choice in Melee, him being the Black Marth and me being the White Peach.

From my experience, I want to encourage everyone who reads this to stop and let those who really matter to you know right now. Even if it’s just a text message, let them know you care about them. You never know when your time or anyone else’s will be up, so make the most of it while you can, try new things and follow your dreams. Don’t wait for someone to tell you how to live your life, just go out and do it.

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I miss you Alex, not a day goes by where I don’t have some sort of thought of you in my mind. Keep on Bopping dude.

Literature Blog Entry #6 (Week 8)

Man, these blog entries/weeks are getting me confused! If I go back and rename my blogs to match the weeks instead of “# whatever” you now know why. This post will probably be pretty long so I’ll add a TL:DR at the bottom, or if that’s to much work just click here to watch a 22 second Rick and Morty clip that, in a sense, captures my feelings on the subject written below.

For this week I wanted to create my own topic, and seeing as how last week was centred around Universities and the freedoms/benefits of breaking free of its shackles and going to live as a gypsy to acquire some sort of wisdom. I wanted to throw my two cents in about what is happening with Universities in the western world right now. Now admittingly a lot of this will be aimed at American colleges and universities (Oh boy I bet you can already guess which ones are coming up in this post) however, I do know that these issues are also starting to arise in Australian universities too. So with that out of the way let’s jump in shall we?

*This post may rustle some jimmies. If your jimmies are rustled I’m not sorry.*

So to say things bluntly universities/colleges in my opinion (again more so in America but it’s starting to creep into some Australian Uni’s) are becoming a joke. Universities and colleges were once seen as instutions in which people could learn, grow and broaden their horizons not only in the subject they are studying but of their life in general. This was done through meeting new people, listening to opposing views of either students or teachers and truly learning your own values. This, however, is something that is slowly dying, or if you are in America has been dead for a while now. With the rise of the social justice culture we live in, where everything can be construed as racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, bigoted, offensive or deemed a nazi or a fascist we are losing the vital skills of growing as individuals and constructively thinking for ourselves and are instead automatically labelling everything and anything that doesn’t conform to our own ideologies as evil.

Prime examples of this come from both sides, and yes this is about to go slightly political, hence the jimmy rustling warning. We see it every day in the media, the western world since Trump did the impossible and became the President of the United States, the western world has been split in two, and your either now a far left libtard snowflake who believes in 72 genders. Or you’re a racist far right neo nazi fascist white supremacist. There is no longer an in between, your either left or right, well that’s according to the internet and media.

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So why am I talking about all of this? Well, remember when I said, “Universities and colleges were once seen as institutions in which people could learn, grow and broaden their horizons” but now they’re a joke? That’s largely due to these Left and Right politics or as we hip young cool kids want to call it “social justice warriors and Anti-social justice warriors”. These two groups have basically destroyed the dream of having a university or college that tolerates different views and allows speakers who believe in different opinions. And what happens when any speaker from the right (And remember if your right leaning your basically Hitler) comes to speak on any topic that opposes social justice ie Feminism, men’s rights and even free speech itself? Ironically they are shut down with violent rioting while simultaneously deeming those who wanted to speak and attend the talks, fascists. Now I’m no fancy lawyer but isn’t shutting down an event with violence because it doesn’t agree with your ideology practically the definition of what a fascist movement would do?

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Nothing says peaceful protest like burning down and vandalising your own city causing upwards of 100k in damages.

Now this subject is huge, and honestly, I could type pages and pages of stuff analysing and critiquing both sides and their actions but I want to stay semi-relevant to the topic of university and what they represent, or at least should represent. To close this already long post off I will just leave you with some parting words.

Universities, colleges and other tertiary education facilities should NOT be a safe space to echo your own beliefs and values. Universities and colleges should be places in which EVERY view is equally valid and why you may not agree with it, they should have the same right to have those beliefs and values. You as a university student should actively encourage having your point of view challenged and confronted, there is absolutely nothing wrong with this. If you can not back your views up in your own words then maybe take a step back and ask yourself “why do I hold these views? Do I truly believe in them?” I know I have done this many times on multiple stances I’ve had in the past. It is perfectly acceptable to change your views based on information you receive, that is how we learn and grow as individuals. And lastly, don’t just get information from one place and base all of your assertions upon this one piece of evidence, listen to opposing views and form your own opinion through hearing both sides, you may be surprised what you learn about yourself.

TL:DR: Social Justice and Anti-Social justice movements, in my opinion, are causing universities to become a joke. Learn to listen to the other sides reasoning and don’t just blindly through accusations at those who disagree with your views.