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Thursday, November 29, 2012

Literary Analysis A Christmas Carol

1. A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens is a short story about Ebenezer Scrooge, a grumpy man who seems bent on being ill-tempered. With a strong dislike for Christmas  Scrooge is even grumpier on the Holidays, refusing a invitation to his nephews dinner. He did regretfully let his attorney, Bob Cratchit have Christmas day off, his only possible Christmas gift. On Christmas eve, he goes home and is visited by his old, and seven years dead business partner Jacob Marley who apparently has been suffering in the afterlife. He warns Scrooge to change his ways. Scrooge is then visited by three ghosts. The ghost of Christmas past shows a part of Scrooge's childhood and earlier Christmas. The ghost of Christmas present introduces us to Tiny Tim, Bob Cratchit's son. Because Scrooge so underpays Bob, he can't afford medicine for his terribly ill son. The ghost of Christmas to come shows Scrooge his funeral, where only a few have showed up and only those who were given incentive to. Scrooge awakes from his dream of possible night of ghosts on Christmas day. He vows to change his ways, starting by sending a turkey to the Cratchit's and going to his nephew's.
2. The theme of this short story is very clear and simple. Don't live as Scrooge did in the beginning of the story, always ill-tempered and mean. Try to have a brighter view, and live with a little joy in your life. It will improve your life and the one's of those around you.
3. The author's tone varies through the story, but for the majority, besides characters talking, it denounces Scrooge's ways, showing his his being angry all the time is clearly wrong.
1. Diction- Dickens use words to give the feelings his characters have more meaning, such as Scrooge's "humbug."
2. Foreshadow- Dickens slowly makes it more clear that Scrooge's ways are leading him to a shallow and lonely grave.
3. Staves- Dicken's splits his short story into five chapters he calls Staves, and each one has a distinct main message about Scrooge  We learn how he is in two, how he was in one, how he will be in another, and we have his respite in the last one.
4. Direct Characterization  Dickens wants no doubt about how mean Scrooge is, so he doesn't beat the bush when describing him.
5. Contrasting Characters  To bring out more of Scrooge's ill-temper, Dickens has Bob Cratchit, who enjoys the Holidays and is very optimistic, to contrast to Scrooge.
6. Dynamic Character- Scrooge goes under a huge  attitude adjustment, helping to show Dicken's theme.
7. Mood- Dicken's makes the reader really dislike Scrooge at the beginning making his transformation even more memorable
8. Tone- Dicken's denounces Scrooge's ways often, to show his wrongs.
9. Parallel Character- Jacob Marley was similar to Scrooge, his business partner, and serves as a comparison as to what could happen to Scrooge.
10. Imagery- Dickens has ghosts a reality, and they show Scrooge what he was doing and how he was wrong.

1. Scrooge is directly described be several people, including people on the street and his nephew. We also learn about Scrooge from how much he hates the happiest time of the year and how he treats his employee, Bob Cratchit. It paints a clear image of Scrooge in the reader's head.
2. When Dicken's changes between character's his diction and syntax do change. Mainly from Scrooge's grumpy words and humbugs to a more cheerful words of a another. Another great shift is when Jacob Marley is warning Scrooge of his fate, using omniscient words.
3. Scrooge is possibly one of the most famous Dynamic characters to ever be written in literature. His great transformation from interminably ill-tempered to  joyous about life in a single night is quite famous, and really demonstrates Dicken's theme.
4. I felt like I might a person. Reading about Scrooge, I saw how he was slowly feeling guilty about his actions more and more with each ghost. When he changed his ways, I felt glad for him. He was very realistic.  

Monday, November 26, 2012

Thinking Outside the Box

                Plato, in his work "Allegory of the Cave", and Sartre, in his play "No Exit" both took a deep look at how are minds work and what it is that really controls or limits the power of our minds and will.I feel that Plato and Sartre differed in what they thought limited the mind, at least what they wrote in their respective pieces  In Plato' "Allegory of the Cave" the thing limiting people was the cave and their chains. These symbolized two things, the cave was their unusual environment that limited their minds by diminishing what they saw, as did their chains, which represented things that would also prevent them from thinking about things other than what was right in front of them because it hurts to move against the chain and see something else. This is how Plato saw the mind limited. Sartre, in his work, "No Exit", saw it differently. The major factor that was limiting the characters thinking was their deeper desires. They could not pursue any course of thought without satisfy their inner needs first. There are many examples. Estelle cannot remain quiet when she needs to because she is so concerned with her appearance and must find a way to see herself. Inez can't remain quiet either because she has some odd desire to bask in Estelle's beauty, and feels moved to stare at her. Garcin cannot proceed to make love to Estelle because he is to concerned with the people who think he is a coward and feels the need to find a way to change that thought in their heads, so that he is not a coward. These are a few examples of desire limiting peoples thoughts in the play.
               Plato's solution to his limits was that it required someone of strong will to fight against and break the chains, and only then could they see the reality of things and free their minds. Sartre solution was a bit more subtle, but it also required strong will.If either of the characters could have accepted that their desires would not be meet or fulfilled, they could have been able to stop tormenting themselves with their impulsive need for gratification. The pusillanimity between the two solutions here is a strong will. A will to break away, or the will to  endure, both are solutions of high merit from excellent thinkers themselves.

Literary Analysis Lord of the Flies

1. Lord of the Flies by William Golding is a novel about a group of boys stranded on an island at the dawn of a war sometime in the near future (future of when the book was written). The novel tells the story of the kids struggle to survive and how easily one can break down in certain situations and loss their civilized sense. The kids attempt to establish an order to survive. They elect Ralph to be there leader and have a conch be the crown, or symbol of power. Piggy, another boy, supports Ralph and his endeavors to help keep order. But soon kids decide they don't want to do things required to survive, and many just don/t. Some join Jack, another boy obsessed with the hunting aspect of survival. Fueling their violence driven crazed is the fear of beasts on the island, various strange figures causing the kids to tremble in fear at false beats.Simon, another boy, has an encounter with a supposed beast, who in Simon's hallucination calls himself lord of the flies, a devil like figure that tells Simon terrible things. As Jack and the hunters going even deeper into savagery and Ralph attempts to keep order, the beast drive the kids to act rash, and they kill several kids, including Simon and Piggy. It is not until an adult solider comes do the kids realize how far they had gone into craziness
2. One possible theme of Lord of the Flies is how in certain conditions how easily a civilized mind can be lost. All it took is the threat if death, no restrictions  and the fear of an unknown beast to cause several kids to become savages.
3. The author's tone is not consistent throughout the novel. It changes as the kids slip closer and closer to savagery, and becomes less civilized.  
1. Setting-Being isolated on an island is key to how the boys lose control.
2. Plot- events in the story, such as a fallen solider falling on the island and looking like a beast, really help show how the kids can think certain things, such as the existence of a beast.
3. Character actions- As the boys start to perform savage actions, it shows the reader how uncivilized they have become.
4. Mood- The author creates a feeling in the reader often, such as disgust or disappointment when the kids accidentally kill Simon. Golding is very good at getting a reaction from the reader.
5. Climax- To show how civilized thought can be completely lost, the author has a climax where several kids have truly lost, showing how savage they have become.
6. Imagery- Golding has a scene where he has Simon encounter the lord of the Flies. n order to make the lord of the Flies seem like a true devil, he writes with a lot of imagery to make him truly evil.
7. Character Representation- The characters represented other types of people in a civil world  Ralph the leader, Piggy the intellectual, Simon the good natured, and Jack the savage, power hungry.
8. Symbols- There are many symbols in the novel, including the signal fire as salvation, lord of the flies as the devil, and the conch as power.
9. Onomatopoeia- Golding uses a sung chant sand by the hunters about viciously killing their prey to show their savagery.
10. Diction- Golding has the characters use different diction's to show their aspects and qualities, the civil from the savage.

1. Golding uses direct characterization initially  such as when Ralph is describe as an appealing person to show he was chosen as the leader or when Piggy was describes as socially awkward to show why the kids often ostracized him. He uses indirect characterization to show characters inner self, such as how Roger abuses many kids because he has an obsession with violence or how Jack tries to dethrone Ralph because of his power hunger. Both are key.
2. Yes. When Golding is talking through a character how has embraced savagery, his syntax and diction are different then for Ralph or Piggy, civilized characters. His words become violent, and the meanings are very appalling. 
3. Ralph, my chosen protagonist, is flat. He sticks by his morals, even though he faces many situations were he could easily abandon them. He tries to help lead the survival of the kids throughout the novel. 
4. I felt like I met many different types of people. Ralph, a charismatic person. Piggy, a smart awkward friend. Jack, a power hungry savage, by the end of the novel. Golding gives each character a different role, and most enact out that role in the entire story, giving them a real feeling.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Cave Sonnet

Imagine a world, wise Plato once said
Where you were brought up in a cave instead
Paralyzed by heavy shackles and chains
Gazing one way for moving causes pain
A fire behind made shadows upon your wall
A false image of you, shackles and all
This dark world would be the one thought as true
Another reality seen by you
Then imagine you were brought to the light
Freed from the chains by help or by ones might
A world that you would struggle to accept
Possible only with  a mind adept
 What Plato wanted us to understand
How views can differ of the world at hand

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Plato Study Questions

1. According to Socrates, what does the Allegory of the Cave represent?

2. What are the key elements in the imagery used in the allegory?

3. What are some things the allegory suggests about the process of enlightenment or education?

4. What do the imagery of "shackles" and the "cave" suggest about the perspective of the cave dwellers or prisoners?

5. In society today or in your own life, what sorts of things shackle the mind?

6. Compare the perspective of the freed prisoner with the cave prisoners?

1.  The allegory of the cave represents the effects of how people perceive things in different situations and how others can see things we see as false as real.
2. The allegory uses shadows as an imagery to show he people who had only known the shadows thought they were the real thing.
3. This allegory suggests that we are educated by our surroundings  People in the cave learned about their world very differently then people outside the cave, and how enlightenment may not actually be wanted, even feared because people want and feel safe with what they already know.
4.  The imagery of shackles and the cave suggest that the perspective of the prisoners has been controlled or limited by their environment, or shackles, changing their reality.
5.  I feel in society today obsession with thing shackles the mind. Many people become to focused with whats cool or popular and instead of thinking about what they would actually enjoy do what someone else has established as good.
6. The freed prisoners are allowed to explore the outer realms unlike the chained prisoners, but they still prefer their initial situation. They just now know there is something else, but are unsure of it.

Monday, November 12, 2012

"Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?"

Literary Analysis

The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn 1. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain tells the story of a young boy named Huck. Huck lives in the south along the Mississippi river and leads a rather unsual life. Abandoned by his drunk father, he lives with a widow who tries to force the mannerisms of proper society that Huck dislikes so much onto him. But when Huck's father Pap finds out that Huck is heir to a large fortune he discovered with his friend Tom, Pap comes looking for Huck to get his money. Huck then runs away from His father, fakes his death and is finally free to roam the river as he pleases. He later teams up with Jim, a run away slave he is wrongly believed to be Huck's killer. Together they travel the river trying to get Jim to freedom and getting a trouble on many occasions along the way. 2. A possible theme of this novel is the difference of things from the perspective of a child. There are many instances where Huck challenges the ideas of society with his ideas of his own because of his youth. He finds Jim to be a good man so he befriends him despite being told it would send him to hell for helping a black slave. Twain challenges the values of southern society at the time by using Huck's young age. 3. Twains tone is challenging, almost sarcastically mocking of the things he disagrees with in society. He writes with Huck seeing the wrong things in society, such as the discrimination against Jim, and makes it obvious and how wrong they are through Huck's innocent eyes. He writes with a tone that has the intent of fixing what he sees. 4. 1-Setting. Twain setting is crucial to the societal problems he feels are present. 2-tone. Twain's tone helps establish what he feels is wrong with society. 3-diction.Helps establish the characters status, black slave versus rich white folk versus river rat versus white scum. 4-syntax. Also helps establish the characters. 5-Point of View-Having the story seen through the eyes of a youth is very important to Twain's theme. 6-Symbolism. There are many symbols in this novel, such as The free river symbolizes Huck's free spirit. 7-Direct characterization. Twain often describes exacltly what character are like so the reader will know if they are good or bad.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Vocab List 11

Affinity- relationship by marriage. I am not forced to like my step-brother because it is a brother by affinity.
Bilious- of or indicative of a peevish ill nature disposition. If she didn't like you, it was obvoius to find out by her bilious diposition to ones she disliked.
Cognate- of the same nature. Algebra and geometry are cognate forms of math with slight differences.
Corollary- A proposition inferred Immediately from a proved proposition with little or no additional proof . The student body wanted something done so the act they passed was not very well reviewed and quite a corollary.
Cul-de-sac - a pouch/ dead end. He kept his coins in a cul-de-sac.
Derring-do- a daring action. Dare devil was the master of derring-dos.
Divination- The art or practice that seeks to foretell future events or discover hidden knowledge due to the interpretation of omens . The seer use divination to predict the boys death.
Elixir- A substance capable of prolonging life indefinitely. Instead of prolonging his life like he thought, the false elixir took his life.
Folderol- a useless accessory. Many girls obssess with impratical folderols. 
Gamut- an entire range or series. Every day of practice was just part of the gamut of hell week.
Hoi polloi- the General populace. Presidents campaign to win the  support of the hoi polloi. 
Ineffable- incapable of being expressed in words . The mans reaction was hysterical, you had to be there, it was ineffable.
Lucubration- to study by night. Many college students practice lucubration. 
Mnemonic- intended to assist memory. FUBAR is a rather vulgar mnemonic.
Obloquy- abusive language. The coach belittled people with obloquy.
Parameter- an independent variable used to express the coordinates of variable point and functions of them. The police officer was given certain parameters to follow.
Pundit- a learned man. A man of the world, the pundit traveled far and wide. 
Risible- provoking laughter. The risible class clown was popular among his friends, but not the teachers.
Symptomatic- having the characteristics of a certain disease but arising of a different cause. He had a symptomatic sore throat from yelling so much. 
Volte-face- a reversal in policy. We used to have an open campus but then someone instituted a volte-face and now it is closed.

Sunday, November 4, 2012


Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?
Thou art more lovely and more temperate:
Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,
And summer’s lease hath all too short a date:
Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines,
And often is his gold complexion dimm’d;
And every fair from fair sometime declines,
By chance or nature’s changing course untrimm’d;
But thy eternal summer shall not fade
Nor lose possession of that fair thou owest;
Nor shall Death brag thou wander’st in his shade,
When in eternal lines to time thou growest:
So long as men can breathe or eyes can see,
So long lives this and this gives life to thee.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

AP Hamlet PLN

Reading some of the many explanations the author has for this play, I was able to understand what the author was saying easily which in turn helped understand that specific part of Hamlet. The whole play is up there and it all appears to be accurate (checking by comparing what I know for sure with the analysis.) It also shows a lot of the importance of the play in the world of literature and how it has remained so powerful for so long.

The author of this essay analyzes what Hamlet was thinking when he enacted out his revenge and possible causes of his errors. An interesting view of the whole tragic situation's ending. It really drives home the point of how Hamlet was a real logically character of high intellect  but his emotions clouded his mind and he often over thought things too much.

This is a class blog exactly like ours, so similar I thought it was. Its interesting to see the conversation the students have and the questions the teacher posts, and will be good to see if I know the answers to them.

This site is helpful because it provides a basic summary of the plot, but still contains necessary parts of the play that should be known. A good review to make sure I understand the actual occurrences of the play, because that is something that with Shakespeare's difficult to understand way with words can be lost to someone like me.

Someone crowd sourced the answer to what can we learn from Hamlet's soliloquies  and the answers were intriguing. Hamlet's soliloquies are really important and need to be able to understand their meanings, so hearing answers from several people on their meanings is really helpful.