[Edmund the] bastard

During our discussions in class today I was really interested in the conversation that surrounded Edmund’s status as a bastard, or illegitimate child. I found that during both the small group that I was a part of, and when we all reconvened as a class, people had interesting ideas and interpretations of what it meant for Edmund to identify as a bastard and in particular, the connotations that the word, bastard, has. Continue reading “[Edmund the] bastard”

King Lear & the Housing Crisis

Hey everyone,

I’m trying to draw some connections between King Lear and the course themes we’ve been talking about. Since reading Act III, I feel a little less lost and confused than I did about how Shakespeare would fit into all of this than I did a week and a half ago. I think there’s much to be said for King Lear, a man who is supposedly in a position of relative authority, and his relationship and interaction with nature. So great is King Lear’s faith in his own status that he underestimates nature itself, and we can see this attitude reflected in his relationships with Goneril and Regan, whose power and authority he similarly underestimates. Like King Lear, people in positions of authority played off the  destructive force of nature when Hurricane Katrina hit, underestimating it and/or playing off the damage it left in its wake.

Continue reading “King Lear & the Housing Crisis”

Survival and Selfishness (and other ramblings)

I was stuck with the documentary we watched in class. I’m also sure that mine wasn’t a singular reaction. One moment that stood apart from the others was when Mr. Gettridge’s daughter wouldn’t tell him the exact date of his wife’s homecoming. It seemed like a great surprise, then June Cross told us that he’d an agreement with Anderson Cooper of CNN to televise her return. It felt gaudy and awkward. Why would Mr. Gettridge strike this deal when his own daughter recognized it as something her mother would detest?

*I subsequently checked myself* Continue reading “Survival and Selfishness (and other ramblings)”

ENGL 439 in conversation with ENGL 458

I was part of the ENGL 458: Major Authors class that Beth taught last semester focusing on the work of Toni Morrison, and how it related to Dante’s Divine Comedy. Throughout the semester, I (as well as my fellow classmates- many of whom are in this class as well) learned how to change the way I think and process information, working past the shock of different experiences and instead understanding causes/effects and the humanness of reactions and emotions. Also, Toni Morrison wrote novels that examine the wonder of language in regards to its specificity and limitations as well as certain themes that I believe are applicable to this course as well, including diaspora, disenfranchisement, memory/forgetting, and loss/gain (to name a few). Continue reading “ENGL 439 in conversation with ENGL 458”

Narrative Foreclosure

So on the syllabus, in an asterisked note, Beth included that there are multiple meanings of the word “foreclosure,” explicitly stating that it can be applied to narratives/storytelling. This sparked my interest, so I decided to do some research on the term narrative foreclosure. I found this article (which I am linking here, but to view the full article you must first write a short written request to the institution it belongs to), in which they quote Psychologist Mark Freeman, who coined the term and defines it as “the premature conviction that one’s life story has effectively ended.” By ‘effectively ended,’ Freeman is implying that the ending of one’s life is seemingly already known by that person. In the instance of a narrative foreclosure, the individual neglects to create further meaning in their life through experiences or goals, and they cease to enjoy the reliving of events in their life through story or nostalgic thought because it is now too late to make changes. Continue reading “Narrative Foreclosure”