About Me

I'm Kelsey. I'm planning on going into an architectural or materials engineering career. I have two incredibly funny puppies and I love watching movies.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Helpful Tips

This is something I found one day. Don't pull an all nighter before the AP Test peeps. But there's some healthy substitutes for caffeine and such.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Macbeth Active Reading Notes

Kelly, Maddi and I got together and read Macbeth, pausing to ask each other questions and determine meaning in Shakespeare's words. These are those notes.

Act I Scene IV

-Duncan trusted the Thane of Cawdor to run the army but fled and was a traitor

-Duncan (The king) found this out from Malcom who heard it from another dude.

-Duncan was all sad that he had put so much of his trust in that dude

-Thane of Cawdor died on the battlefield a traitor, Duncan gives Malcom the role of Prince of



Exact translation of dialogue between two might be needed for more depth, but otherwise we

understood the general idea

Act I Scene V

Lady Macbeth

-Witches told her about Macbeth’s future and fortune

-She gets all excited and then worried her hubby is “too full of the milk of human kindness” to

get all the fortune and do what he needs to do

-Ironic at this point because Macbeth was introduced as a crazy killer dude, and now his wife is

saying he’s too much of a sweetie to be the king

-Messenger comes by and tells Lady that the king is coming (because the Thane of Cawdor died

and Macbeth was made the new one) and Lady is all EHMEHGEHD better get ready

-She decides to get all cray cray and unsex herself saying “make my blood thick” so that she can

be the man for Macbeth

Macbeth shows up

-Macbeth and the queen conspire to kill the king

-decide to put on faces that they’re super innocent but really the evil serpent on the inside

Act I Scene VI

Rando’s Chatting

-The air is clean, guilt free, allusions to the air about to get real thick with guilt and death

-Lady Macbeth is busy sucking up to everyone in the castle

Act I Scene VII

Macbeth talking

-Gives soliloqouy about killing the king, trying to rationalize it for himself.

-Decides it will be a quick assassination, and that Duncan isn’t a great king anyways, but all of his virtues

will be remembered so he’ll go to heaven. (Therefore its totally chill to kill someone)

-Tells himself that the king has put Macbeth on to kill him unknowingly, because he made Macbeth the

Thane of Cawdor so how could he not continue with the prophecy??

Lady Macbeth arrives

-Lady Macbeth is annoyed with her girl husband. Wants him to go ahead and do the deed. Kill

the dude (Just kill deh dude *insert singing crab*)

-Comments on his attire being all stupid, basically insults him until Macbeth has to get all mad

and defend himself and then go kill the king.

-She says she super manly, and if a baby were sucking her milk she’d “pluck thy nipple from his

boneless head and dash’d the brains out.” So she’s like real scary, and real serious now.

-The guards will be the bearer of the “guilt”, in other words they’re framing the murder on the guardsby

killing the king with their daggers and leaving them in the guard’s hands

-Lady Macbeth drugs them with wine

Act II Scene I

People Chatting, Macbeth comes in

-Small talk about whatever, (?) they leave

-Macbeth gives a post-kill soliloquy, “Tarquin’s ravishing strides towards his design” an allusion

to Tarquin who killed Tullis (?) in order to rule rome, and then got kicked out of rome. Macbeth doesn’t

want to be exiled, reference to greek history.

Act II Scene II

Lady Macbeth

-Lady is all mad cause Macbeth brought the daggers back with him

-She has to go put them back herself

-A knocking keeps sounding and both Lady and Macbeth hear it.

Act II Scene III

Porter is chillin

-Porter sits around and talks about how drunk he is

-Also hears the knocking, explains that perhaps the knocking his the feeling of guilt, getting

louder and louder in their lives

Everyone else enters

-They all “find out” about the murder from Macbeth, who makes a big deal about being sad

about it, and that Duncan was such a great guy.

-Donalbain and Malcom decide to leave the scene and retreat to different countries until they

find out what happened to their father.

Act III Scene I

-Macbeth is suspicious of Banquo after he questioned when his sons will get their “fortune” and

be kings. (Fleance is Banquo’s son.)

-Macbeth feels that he must kill Banquo because he was there for the prophecy, and is probably

suspicious of the murder, and also fleance because Fleance will try to avenge his father’s death

-Macbeth gets some murderers to kill them

Act III Scene II

Lady and Macbeth talking

-Lady wants Macbeth to let the murder go

-Machbeth still feels like they are in danger and won’t relax

-Tells Lady about Banquo and how he could be an issue, Lady is like well whathcha gon’ do son,

and he tells her he’s gonna have them murdered

-They agree the night will cover and end their guilt, and they are sure of their new plan to kill

some more

Act III Scene III

Three murders and Banquo and Fleance

-Murderers are Macbeth’s lackies that no one in the kingdom would trust if they double crossed


-The murders find Banquo in the night and attack him and kill him pretty brutally, Banquo yells

at his son to flee, and his son gets away

-Murderers and pretty proud about getting one out of two.

Act III Scene IV

Everyone hanging out for dinner

-Lady and Macbeth are being all super nice and happy about the new kingdom for them

-Everyone is going along with it because they’re unaware/afraid/stupid

-First Murderer shows up and tells him that Banquo is dead, twenty gashes in his head, safe in

some dirt

-They all sit down for dinner when the Ghost of Banquo shows up and takes Macbeth’s seat

-Macbeth is asked to sit and FREAKS OUT when he sees Banquo, which no one else can see, and

is confused about finding somewhere to sit

-Lady tries to cover it up and tell everyone Macbeth is totes fine don’t worry

-Macbeth still losing his mind about why B isn’t dead and away instead of sitting at his dinner


-Ghost disappears and Macbeth is suddenly macho man again and all fine, but then they ghost

comes back and Macbeth is all “No! A Russian bear, a crazy shark anything but Banquo’s body!” and gets

all wimpy again

-Lady takes over and tells everyone to leave because Macbeth is sick.

-They all leave and wish him well

Lady and Macbeth

-Lady is all FTW you ruined dinner

-Macbeth explains he’s sees dead people, and that they must go talk to the witches again

February Lit Analysis

Literary Analysis: Wuthering Heights
By: Emily Bronte

1) In short, there are two characters that are in love named Heathcliff and Catherine. Unfortunately the pressures of social society cause Catherine to betray her love for Heathcliff and to marry a gentleman by the name of Edgar Linton. This betrayal infuriates Heathcliff who seeks revenge to all who abused him. Even when Catherine dies (halfway through the novel which is kind of strange), Heathcliff continues to seek his vengeance; her death actually makes him even more cruel. He continues on his rampage and along the waydestroys Isabella and drives her away, takes possession of Linton, forces Catherine (not the same one who died) and Linton to marry, inherits Thrushcross Grange and finally dies. I know it seems kind of depressing but the death of Heathcliff at the end shows that the other characters can now live in peace since his continuous cycle of revenge has ended.

2) A common theme throughout this novel dealt with social status and its effects on the actions each character took. The novel takes place in a time where status was everything. You had your royalty at the top, then the aristocrats, the gentry, and then the working class at the bottom. What is quite different and notable in this hierarchy is the unstable status of gentry. While aritocrats have a set title as upper class, the gentry category fluctuates for each individual based on their behaviors. In a way they have to “prove” themselves in order to upkeep their title, however it is still subject to change so members of this class are very cautious in what actions they take. The Lintons and Earnshaws are both part of thisfluctuating category and as a result, you can see the effect of social status on their behavior. The easiest example, however not the only example, is Catherine’s decision to marry Edgar so she can become “the greatest woman of the neighborhood” despite her already present affections for Heathcliff. Heathcliff is also an example of how much social status can fluctuate: he began as a common laborer and ended as a gentleman.

3) In this novel the tone is particularly difficult to decipher. In the first half of the novel the reader might say that the author views the love between Catherine and Heathcliff to be doomed and worthless since it is just tossed aside to accommodate for social status. But then in the second half of the story, the love between Hareton and young Catherine is able to flourish and is successful. The sharp contrast between the two halves of the novel makes the author’s tone ambiguous to the reader. Bronte may be celebrating love, or she could be scorning it.

4) Multiple narrators-In this novel the story is told from the viewpoints of numerous characters including Nelly, Lockwood, Isabella and others. By having multiple viewpoints we are able to analyze the novel and theme in different ways as opposed to a single sided viewpoint if we had had only one narrator. I can’t really give quotes for examples but in the text, Nelly tells the story and Lockwood records this story and describes how it was told to her. Isabella and the other characters have minor narratives, such as Isabella’s letter which is read out word for word.

Time frame- This novel is told in a disorderly fashion, not in chronological order. It can make the story hard to follow at times, but I believe it is actually pretty beneficial to the story because the narrators in the present can foreshadow what is about to happen and can give opinions on the story as it progresses. For example, Nelly often gives her opinion on how the character think, feel, and what their motivations are.

Diction- In this novel the diction serves to portray the intense love felt between Heathcliff and Catherine, however it is socially impossible for the two to actually love and marry each other. It is clear throughout the novel that Catherine is in love with Heathcliff because the characters describe themselves as being the same: “whatever [their] souls” were made of they were “of the same” material and Heathcliff saying that he lost his “soul” when Catherine died. Catherine also admits she loves him but points out how inefficient a marriage to him would be, that it would “degrade [her] to marry Heathcliff."

Dialect- In this novel the dialect serves to distinguish between different classes which is huge, especially since the pressures of social status is so predominately portrayed in this novel. Heathcliff would be a good comparative example since in the beginning of the novel he is a laborer and at the end a gentleman. In each case he uses a specific kind of dialect (less advanced when he was a laborer and more advanced when he was a gentleman). The different dialects are also apparent when you hear the lower working class and how illiterate they are.

Foreshadowing- In this novel foreshadowing allows the reader to pick up on the important things in the novel and they help to greater portray that the love between Heathcliff and Catherine was in fact real. There are a number of foreshadowing in the novel but some include Lockwood’s visit to Wuthering Heights and how it brought to the surface previous resentments and relationships, Lockwood having nightmares with ghosts, and the nights her spends in Catherine’s old bed.


1.Describe two examples of direct characterization and two examples of indirect characterization. Why does the author use both approaches, and to what end (i.e., what is your lasting impression of the character as a result)?

In Wuthering Heights it is difficult to say which type of characterization she uses. Indirect characterization is how other characters view the character of subject, but in this novel the narrator is a character in the story. So, in a sense we get a direct description of the characters’ personalities but at the same time this kind of characterization could fit under the definition of indirect. Mr. Lockwood is the first character we are introduced to in this novel and he is described directly. He from the beginning describes himself as being weak when compared to the savage actions made by Heathcliff. Which brings us to our next character; Heathcliff is described mostly indirectly through the views of the other characters in the story. The narrators of the story, who also partake in the plot, tell the story of Heathcliff but give in their own perspectives and opinions throughout it.  Mrs Heathcliff is also described through indirect characterization, an example includes the analysis of her physical appearance by another character:

“She was slender, and apparently scarcely past girlhood: an admirable form, and the most exquisite little face that I have ever had the pleasure of beholding: small features, very fair; flaxen ringlets, or rather golden, hanging loose on her delicate neck; and eyes-had they been agreeable in expression they would have been irresistible.”

Lastly, Edgar Linton is a character who is described directly as someone who is “handsome”, “rich”, and “cheerful.”

2. Does the author's syntax and/or diction change when s/he focuses on character? How? Example(s)?

Both syntax and diction change in this novel because there are multiple narrators each with their unique personalities, and it wouldn’t make sense to have a single syntax and diction for multiple characters. For example, Heathcliff who is furious by his mistreatments has a more negative type of diction but other characters are more lighthearted.

3. Is the protagonist static or dynamic? Flat or round? Explain.

Heathcliff is a dynamic and a round character. He is dynamic in that he starts off in the story as a man in love, but his pivotal moment comes when he is rejected by Catherine due to her superior social status. This sends him in a spiral downwards in which he turns vengeful and seeks revenge on all that have hurt him. I would say Heathcliff is a flat character. I know he expresses two different sides of him in the story (loving and vengeful) but he only expresses one at a time, they are never mixed. He is either one or the other depending on where you are in the book (before or after Catherine’s rejection).

4. After reading the book did you come away feeling like you'd met a person or read a character? Analyze one textual example that illustrates your reaction.

To be honest, Heathcliff’s reaction to being rejected made him sound very unreal to me because I don’t see how being rejected could hurt someone so deeply and evoke such a desperate reaction. It seems so exaggerated to the point where it has just become unrealistic, kind of like when someone tries too hard to do something or be someone that they end up seeming fake.

“ ‘And I pray one prayer—I repeat it till my tongue stiffens—Catherine Earnshaw, may you not rest, as long as I am living! You said I killed you—haunt me, then! The murdered do haunt their murderers, I believe. I know that ghosts have wandered on earth. Be with me always—take any form—drive me mad! Only do not leave me in this abyss, where I cannot find you! Oh, God! It is unutterable! I cannot live without my life! I cannot live without my soul!’ ”

Friday, February 7, 2014

Lit Terms #5

parallelism: the sentence structure where two or more parts of a sentence are given similar form for emphasis

parody: an imitation or mock of a well-known piece of literature or art

pathos: emotional appeal to the reader or audience

pedantry: a presentation of learning for learning itself;

personification: giving inanimate objects or abstract ideas human or life characteristics/actions

plot: the structure or plan of a work

poignant: evoking sadness

point of view: the perspective from which the audience or reader comprehends a work

postmodernism: genre of literature with the characteristics of experimentation, radical forms of structure, and a fuzzy distinction between fiction and reality

prose: language without a rhyming pattern; normal, spoken language

protagonist: usually the central character of a work; must go against the antagonist

pun: a play on words

purpose: the intended effect of a work; what the author wants to establish in the reader

realism: a style of literature that attempts to depict real life

refrain: a repeated phrase in a poem or song

requiem: a song or work of literature to honor or commiserate the dead

resolution: the part if the plot after the climax that resolves the conflict

restatement: an idea that is repeated for emphasis

rhetoric: persuasive language that uses certain techniques to fulfill its purpose

rhetorical question: a rhetorical technique; a question that doesn't require an answer because the answer can be inferred from the question or context

rising action: the part of the plot leading up to the climax; may introduce the conflict

romanticism: style of literature where imaginations and emotions are valued over structure and reason

satire: makes fun of the weaknesses or wrongdoings of an idea, a company, an organization, a person, etc.

scansion: analyzes the meter, or rhythm, of a verse

setting: the time and place where a story takes place

Thursday, January 30, 2014

January Lit Analysis

Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne

1.    Hester Prynn, an unfortunate lover, was sent to America with her daughter, without the father ever meeting them in the new world. Hester's lonely travels in America led her to have an affair. The story begins explaining the meaning of the red A that Hester wears upon her chest to show that she has been marked as an adulteress. Though Hester is heckled and ridiculed, she is charitable and kind to the community, and therefore the community develops a bond with Hester and her daughter. As things seem to go smoothly, Chillingworth, the father disguised as a medicinal man, becomes close with Hester and the authorities of the village. Dimmesdale is then watched over by Chillingworth, who is secretly planning to kill the man, but first to expose him as the man that Hester had loved. Dimmesdale's distress and urgency, because he is a preacher, leads him to an unbearable discovery at the end of the story in front of the town, where he dies upon the scaffold that introduced at the very beginning.

2.    The main theme I saw in this novel was that of the identity that society seems to assign to each character, whether they like it or not. An obvious example is with Hester Prynne who is forced to wear the scarlet letter, or move to a different town and forget about the letter. Hester refuses to leave town and to some this may seem odd because she could live a normal life, but to her it makes perfect sense. Leaving town would give the notion that society had won, instead she keeps the letter and wears it as a reminder of who she is and how her past actions/sins have made her who she is.

3.    During the time this novel was written, Puritans were renowned for their morality and religious intolerance. In the Scarlett Letter, Hawthorne through his tone shows his views on Puritan society in a disapproving way.

4. Rhetorical question- “Is there not law for it?” page 45

Metaphor- “poor little Pearl was a demon offspring” page 88

Oxymoron- “die daily a living death” page 153

Anaphora- “Live, therefore, and bear about thy doom with thee, in the eyes of men and women-in the eyes of him whom thou didst call thy husband-in the eyes of yonder child!” page 65

Simile- “The door of the jail being flung open from within there appeared, in the first place, like a black shadow emerging into sunshine, the grim and gristly presence of the town-beadle, with a sword by his side, and his staff of office in his hand.”

Allusion- “Divine Maternity” refers to the Virgin Mary and is used to describe Hester Prynne

Flashback- This entire story is basically a flashback. The narrator stumbles upon a manuscript describing the events that unfolded and he reads these descriptions to us.

Situational irony- Chillingsworth is Hester’s old husband in disguise.

Symbols- Hawthorne uses many symbols in this novel including the scarlet letter (shame and identity for Hester) and Pearl (Hester’s living scarlet letter).


1.    Direct characterization: “But Hester Prynne, with a mind of native courage and activity…” and “beautiful from regularity of feature and richness of complexion” Direct characterization seemed to give away the tiny details that were almost irrelevant, but still important enough as to help progress the story and paint a more vivid picture of each character. They were more used as descriptions of appearances whereas indirect characterization gave insight to the personalities of each character. Some examples include Hester choosing to keep the scarlet letter on as opposed to leaving town and starting a new life, and also Chillingworth’s decision to go undercover and seek revenge on the man who had an affair with his wife.

2.     When describing the important characters in the story, I notice that you can divide them from the normal cast by noticing the change in syntax. The descriptions of the characters also seem to change in diction, for the characters become more animated by the writing and the sentences are long and descriptive so that you may judge the character, similar to how the people in the story judge her. Simply by face value.

3.    Hester Prynne is a dynamic and a round character. Because of her punishment, she is alienated and becomes a contemplative thinker. She has lots of time to speculate about moral questions and human nature. This matures her character and makes her more motherly and independent. She is a round character because of the wide array of emotions and characteristics she displays such as anger, love, compassion, caring, and hatred.

4.    I feel like Hester Prynne was just another character that I read because her choice to defy society is so different from what people nowadays would do. It makes her an admirable character, but hard to view as a realistic one. In today’s time, people would rather go with the flow of things than stand out.

Lit Terms #4

interior monologue: a passage of writing presenting a character's inner thoughts and emotions in a direct, sometimes fragmented manner

inversion: switching the usual order of words or clauses; the placement of two things close together for contrasting effect

lyric: expressing the writer's emotions, usually brief and in stanzas

magical realism: a genre where magic parts are a natural part of an otherwise realistic environment

metaphor: a figure of speech to make a comparison without using "like" or "as"

metonymy: the substitution of the name of an attribute for that of the thing meant

modernism: literature movement influenced by industrialization and westernization

monologue: a long speech by one character

mood" inducing or suggestive of a particular feeling or state of mind

motif: any reoccurring element in a story that has symbolic significance or the reason behind actions

myth: a traditional story, esp. one concerning early history of people, natural phenomenons, or supernatural beings

narrative: a story

narrator: a character who recounts the events of a novel

naturalism: a style and theory of representation based on the accurate depiction of detail

novelette/novella: a short novel or long short story

omniscient pov: a character or third person who is all knowing

onomatopoeia: the formation of a word from a sound

oxymoron: a figure of speech in which apparently contradictory terms appear in conjunction 

pacing: the movement of a literary piece from one point to another

parable: a simple story used to illustrate a moral or spiritual lesson

paradox: a statement that leads to a conclusion that seems self contradictory

Tuesday, January 28, 2014


Why did Charles Dickens write the novel you're reading/reviewing? What in your analysis of literary techniques led you to this conclusion? (Make sure to include textual support illustrating Dickens' use of at least three techniques we've studied/discussed this year.)

Dickens wrote Great Expectations to display a bildungsroman. The story is about the growth of Pip and how his dreams and definitions of success change as he goes through life.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Lit Terms #3

Exposition: beginning of a story that sets forth facts, ideas, and/or characters, in a detailed explanation.
ex: “A long time ago in a galaxy far away, far away…” This is at the beginning of the Star Warsmovies where everything is explained in text on the screen

Expressionism: movement in art, literature, and music consisting of unrealistic representation of an inner idea or feeling(s).
ex: Samuel Beckett was an expressionist playwright

Fable: a short, simple story, usually with animals as characters, designed to teach a moral truth.
ex: Aesop's fables include The Ant and the Grasshopper and The Hare and the Tortoise 
Fallacy: from Latin word “to deceive”, a false or misleading notion, belief, or argument; any kind of erroneous reasoning that makes arguments unsound.
ex: the appeal to popular opinion fallacy "A lot of people buy this, so it must be awesome"

Falling Action: part of the narrative or drama after the climax.
ex: In Titanic when the survivors get rescued and put on the other boat
Farce: a boisterous comedy involving ludicrous action and dialogue.
ex: The Importance of Being Ernest by Oscar Wilde

Figurative Language: apt and imaginative language characterized by figures of speech (such as metaphor and simile).
ex: "A host of golden daffodils;  Beside the lake, beneath the trees, Fluttering and dancing in the breeze." from Wordsworth "I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud

Flashback: a narrative device that flashes back to prior events.
ex: In Into the Wild Chris has several flashbacks while in the wild about his life in society

Foil: a person or thing that, by contrast, makes another seem better or more prominent.
ex: In Harry Potter, Voldemort is a foil to Dumbledore
Folk Tale: story passed on by word of mouth.
ex: Paul Bunyan.

Foreshadowing: in fiction and drama, a device to prepare the reader for the outcome of the action; “planning” to make the outcome convincing, though not to give it away.
ex: In John Steinbeck novel “Of Mice and Men”, the George killing Candy’s dog foreshadows Candy killing Lennie because Candy is identical to George and Lennie to the dog.

Free Verse: verse without conventional metrical pattern, with irregular pattern or no rhyme.
ex: Fog by Carl Sandburg
The fog comes
on little cat feet
It sits looking
over harbor and city
on silent haunches
and then moves on.

Genre: a category or class of artistic endeavor having a particular form, technique, or content.
ex: Mystery, romance, fiction, non-fiction

Gothic Tale: a style in literature characterized by gloomy settings, violent or grotesque action, and a mood of decay, degeneration, and decadence. 
ex: Frankenstein by Mary Shelley

Hyperbole: an exaggerated statement often used as a figure of speech or to prove a point.
ex: I am dying of shame
Imagery: figures of speech or vivid description, conveying images through any of the senses.
ex: He whiffed the aroma of freshly brewed coffee

Implication: a meaning or understanding that is to be arrive at by the reader but that is not fully and explicitly stated by the author. 
ex: When the professor said, “All the other professors in this college are pushovers,” he implied (not inferred) that he was a tough professor.

Incongruity: the deliberate joining of opposites or of elements that are not appropriate to each other.
ex:  in fables, the clever ones are usually the small/oppressed, while the foolish ones are usually the big/gigantic/ ones. in the end, the small ones always win against the big ones.

Inference: a judgement or conclusion based on evidence presented; the forming of an opinion which possesses some degree of probability according to facts already available. 
ex: Based on the fact that Allyson got into Princeton, you can infer that she is very intelligent.

Irony: a contrast or incongruity between what is said and what is meant, or what is expected to happen and what actually happens, or what is thought to be happening and what is actually happening. 
ex: The fire station burns down.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Monday, January 13, 2014

Lit Terms #2

Circumlocution: a roundabout or evasive speech or writing, in which many words are used but a few would have served
ex: saying "a certain long-eared animal with a penchant for carrots" instead of saying "rabbit"

Classicism: art, literature, and music reflecting the principles of ancient Greece and Rome: tradition, reason, clarity, order, and balance
ex: writers like Homer, Ovid, Virgil, Sophocles, etc.                                                                                             
Cliché: a phrase or situation overused within society
ex: "There are more fish in the sea"

Climax: the decisive point in a narrative or drama; the point of greatest intensity or interest at which plot question is answered or resolved 
ex: The climax of the movie Titanic is when the ship hits the iceberg.

Colloquialism: folksy speech, slang words or phrases usually used in informal conversation 
ex: "Hey, let's get some grub."

Comedy: originally a nondramatic literary piece of work that was marked by a happy ending; now a term to describe a ludicrous, farcical, or amusing event designed provide enjoyment or produce smiles and laughter
ex: Twelfth Night by Shakespeare, Friends the TV show

Conflict: struggle or problem in a story causing tension 
ex: The conflict in The Hunger Games is that Katniss must fight for her life while also protecting Peeta.

Connotation: implicit meaning, going beyond dictionary definition 
ex: "Mother" has a more negative connotation than "mom"

Contrast: a rhetorical device by which one element (idea or object) is thrown into opposition to another for the sake of emphasis or clarity 
ex: "What a distressing contrast there is between the radiant intelligence of the child and the feeble mentality of the average adult." (Sigmund Freud)

Denotation: plain dictionary definition 
ex: the definition of definition is: a statement of the exact meaning of a word, esp. in a dictionary.

Denouement (pronounced day-new-mahn): loose ends tied up in a story after the climax, closure, conclusion
ex: In Into the Wild the denouement is when Chris dies

Dialect: the language of a particular district, class or group of persons; the sounds, grammar, and diction employed by people distinguished from others.
ex: In Uganda, the main dialect is English but there are also Bantu dialects

Dialectics: formal debates usually over the nature of truth.
ex: "Sophists employed the method of dialectic (Greek: dialektike) in their teaching, or inventing arguments for and against a proposition. This approach taught students to argue either side of a case." James A. Herrick

Dichotomy: split or break between two opposing things. 
ex: The dichotomy between right and wrong

Diction: the style of speaking or writing as reflected in the choice and use of words. 
ex: Classroom diction is different than the diction we use when with friends.

Didactic: having to do with the transmission of information; education. 
ex: Some boring classes are said to be too didactic

Dogmatic: rigid in beliefs and principles. 
ex: "Anyone who wants universal health care is a socialist." is a dogmatic statement

Elegy: a mournful, melancholy poem, especially a funeral song or lament for the dead, sometimes contains general reflections on death, often with a rural or pastoral setting. 
ex: "Here Captain! dear father!/This arm beneath your head;/It is some dream that on deck,/You've fallen cold and dead."-"O Captain! My Captain!" by Walt Whitman

Epic: a long narrative poem unified by a hero who reflects the customs, mores, and aspirations of his nation of race as he makes his way through legendary and historic exploits, usually over a long period of time (definition bordering on circumlocution). 
ex: The Epic of Gilgamesh 

Epigram: witty aphorism. 
ex: "It is better to light a candle than curse the darkness." - Eleanor Roosevelt

Epitaph: any brief inscription in prose or verse on a tombstone; a short formal poem of commemoration often a credo written by the person who wishes it to be on his tombstone. 
ex: "Here lies Frank Pixley, as usual." (Composed by Ambrose Bierce for Frank M. Pixley, an American journalist and politician)

Epithet: a short, descriptive name or phrase that  may insult someone’s character,
ex: Lord of the dead and mighty for Aidoneus

Euphemism: the use of an indirect, mild or vague word or expression for one thought to be coarse, offensive, or blunt. 
ex: to say "passed away" instead of "died"

Evocative (evocation): a calling forth of memories and sensations; the suggestion or production through artistry and imagination of a sense of reality. 
ex: "The river runs steadily through this vivid evocation of a childhood in India at the time of the First World War."

Friday, January 10, 2014

Lit Terms #1

So I've definitely been slacking on my blog, just busy with school, sports, and work, but I've got some time to get caught up.

allegory:a tale in prose or verse in which characters, actions, or settings represent abstract ideas or moral qualities; a story that uses symbols to make a point

alliteration:the repetition of similar initial sounds, usually consonants, in a group of words

allusion:a reference to a person, a place, an event, or a literary work that a writer expects a reader to recognize

ambiguity:something uncertain as to interpretation

anachronism:something that shows up in the wrong place or the wrong time

analogy:a comparison made between two things to show the similarities between them

analysis:a method in which a work or idea is separated into its parts, and those parts given rigorous and detailed scrutiny

anaphora:a device or repetition in which a word or words are repeated at the beginning of two or more lines, phrases, clauses, or sentences

anecdote: a very short story used to illustrate a point

antagonist:a person or force opposing the protagonist in a drama or narrative

antithesis:a balancing of one term against another for emphasis or stylistic effectiveness

aphorism: terse, pointed statement expressing some wise or clever observation about life

apologia:a defense or justification for some doctrine, piece of writing, cause, or action; also apology

apostrophe:a figure of speech in which an absent or dead person, an abstract quality, or something inanimate or nonhuman is addressed directly

argument:the process of convincing a reader by proving either the truth or the falsity of an idea or proposition; also, the thesis or proposition itself

assumption:the act of supposing, or taking for granted that a thing is true

audience:the intended listener or listeners

characterization:the means by which a writer reveals a character's personality

chiasmus: a reversal in the order off words so that the second half of a statement balances the first half in inverted word order

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Lit Analysis #3

 The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway

1. The Old Man and the Sea is a novel about the struggle between an aged fisherman and the catch of his life.  Santiago has gone eighty four days without catching a fish, bringing his hopes down as well as his apprentice.  Manolin, Santiago's prodigy, is forced to no longer fish with Santiago due to his overwhelming bad luck.  Santiago continues to fish even without his most trusted assistant.  One day Santiago once again travels the ocean waiting for even a nibble.  Finally after much time an enormous marlin gets caught on Santiago's hook.  They fight for many days until Santiago is finally able to reel the monstrous fish in.  After he spears the marlin, he decides to make for land excited to see the reaction on the villagers.  On his journey back however numerous sharks approach the huge fish, taking large pieces of flesh right in front of Santiago.  Santiago manages to fight off most of the sharks however by the time he reaches land the prized marlin is nothing but a skeleton.  Although very distraught, the villagers marvel at the size of the marlin and praise the old man's fortitude.

2. I feel as if the theme of the novel greatly expresses self encouragement.  Through out the battle with the great marlin the old man constantly reminds himself never to give in.  Joe DiMaggio, Santiago's favorite baseball player, gives the old man the confidence he needs to carry on, asking himself constantly, "What would Joe do?"  Even after the great fish is ravaged by the constant flow of sharks, Santiago always reminds himself to finish what he has started.

3. The tone of the novel is that of great sympathy for the old man.  It is obvious that the author feels something for the main character.
  • “Let him think that I am more man than I am and I will be so.”- At this point Ernest Hemingway is showing the reader the main character's weaknesses.  But instead of mocking Santiago, Hemingway instead builds the main character up in a way.
  • “It's silly not to hope. It's a sin he thought.”- Again Hemingway reflects his sympathy towards Santiago by portraying the message that in order to finish what he has done, Santiago must hope."
  • “If the others heard me talking out loud they would think that I am crazy. But since I am not, I do not care.”- Finally, Hemingway could be mocking the character but instead he decides to reinforce the idea of the strength and will that Santiago possesses.
  • Rhetorical Question-“Luck is a thing that comes in many forms and who can recognize her?”  The reader is not meant to answer this question but simply ponder on it.
  • Symbolism-“Have faith in the Yankees my son. Think of the great DiMaggio.” Joe DiMaggio is a symbol of strength and courage throughout the entire novel.
  • Antagonist- “Why did they make birds so delicate and fine as those sea swallows when the ocean can be so cruel?” Most readers might believe that the marlin would be the antagonist when in reality I believe it is the ocean itself.
  • Connotation- “I hate a cramp, he thought. It is a treachery of one's own body.” Instead of directly stating what a cramp is, Santiago instead decided to elaborate on a different definition of what a cramp means to him.
  • Allusion- “But I think the Great DiMaggio would be proud of me today.” When Hemingway wrote this novel I believe he thought most would know who the "Great DiMaggio" really was.
  • Personification- “The fish is my friend too," he said aloud. "I have never seen or heard of such a fish. But I must kill him. I am glad we do not have to try to kill the stars." For some reason Santiago thinks of the marlin as his friend, almost treating it as a cherished relationship.
  • Diction-  “Fish," he said softly, aloud, "I'll stay with you until I am dead.” The diction throughout the entire novel is very simply, however it often packs a very powerful punch.
  • Syntax- “But man is not made for defeat," he said. "A man can be destroyed but not defeated. " Again the syntax is very simply however because of the way Hemingway arranged these elementary words, he created a powerful and everlasting quote.

  • Direct Characterization- "Everything about him was old except his eyes and they were the same color as the sea and were cheerful and undefeated." Hemingway decides to use direct characterization here in order to inform the reader on just how vivid the eye's of the old man were.
  • Direct Characterization- "Why did they make birds so delicate and fine as those sea swallows when the ocean can be so cruel? She is kind and very beautiful. But she can be so cruel and it comes so suddenly and such birds that fly, dipping and hunting, with their small sad voices are made too delicately for the sea." Although a form of personification, Hemingway again uses direct characterization when describing the personalities of the ocean.
  • Indirect Characterization- "Do you believe the great DiMaggio would stay with a fish as long as I will stay with this one? he thought. I am sure he would and more since he is young and strong. Also his father was a fisherman. But would the bone spur hurt him too much?" From this quote the reader understands that Hemingway is describing Santiago's pain without directly stating it.
  • Indirect Characterization- "After he judged that his right hand had been in the water long enough he took it out and looked at it.  "It is not bad," he said. "And pain does not matter to a man."  Although this might seem as if this represents a direct characterization quote, it in fact portrays the extreme pain Santiago is in without being candid about it.
2. Hemingway is known for his simple syntax, therefore when he starts to describe Santiago's character his syntax does not change. "He no longer dreamed of storms, nor of women , nor of great occurrences, nor of great fish, nor fights, nor contests of strength, nor of his wife. He only dreamed of places now and of the lions on the beach They played like young cats in the dusk and he loved them as he loved the boy."  It is obvious that Hemingway's light syntax is carried throughout the novel even when describing the main character.  "But the old man always thought of her as feminine and as something that gave or withheld great favors, and if she did wild or wicked things it was because she could not help them. The moon affects her as it does a woman, he thought."  Again Hemingway's syntax and diction does not change when he portrays the feelings of Santiago, they simply describe exactly what Santiago is feeling in that very moment.

3. I believe that Santiago is without a doubt a static character.  Most readers would find a static character to be boring or dull, however it is Santiago's positive spirit that makes him such an interesting character.  Even when the ocean and the entire world is against him, Santiago remains calm and ready for the next challenge.  He is given many opportunities to quit but decides to carry on because of how far he has already gotten.  Santiago also feels deep emotions for the sea even when it tears him down into submission.  He respects the ocean and understands the actions it takes against him.  I also find Santiago to be a flat character.  He remains true to himself, for there is nothing to change about Santiago.  If Hemingway was to make Santiago a round character I do not believe there would be such a lovely appeal to Santiago's character.  Therefore there is not a doubt in my mind that Santiago is a flat character.

4. Honestly I feel as though I have met Santiago after reading the novel.  He is a person I have always wanted to meet.  Santiago has a strong will and an everlasting positive personality.  I hope that someday I will meet a persona exactly like Santiago.  "Fish, I love you and respect you very much. But I will kill you dead before this day ends."  This might seem like a very gruesome example, however it shows the main characters true honesty.  Most fisherman would not announce that they are going to kill a fish for fear of a bad omen, however Santiago declares it knowing that in order to succeed in his task he must stay honest.  Although a very simple character, Santiago is a character I hope to meet one day.