Series of Blogs, Pt. IV: Emily Dickinson

"I heard a fly buzz" was the title we were taught as young tykes in school, although now I find out that these poems have no titles; they are simply numbered. I stuffed 700 bags full of Peoria Visitor Guides and FOLEPI guides today, so I feel as if my brain has been numbed and I will pass out if I do not have dinner. If I don't happen to make any sense, please forgive me.
Basically, what Dickinson's trying to say is that the final moments of this person's life were spent in making a will and then being interrupted by a darn fly. And what in the world is an "...uncertain- stumbling Buzz?" It sounds like the fly was possessed or something.

Good night!


Series of Blogs, Pt. III: Walt Whitman

I remember reading some pieces of Whitman's poetry in grade school and high school, but was never exposed to the entire piece of Song of Myself. Wow! I now know what I've been missing all of these years.
I can understand why those who first read Whitman's poetry were shocked. There are some pretty graphic and um...interesting descriptions in here. Also, the manner in which he jumps from the baby sleeping to a murder really catches one's attention and keeps the reader on edge to see what he sees after that. His want of the unificiation of all people would have been interesting to discuss at the time period. I wonder what the former plantation owners and sharecroppers would have thought of that...

Series of Blogs, Pt. II: Margaret Fuller

I didn't have the opportunity to discuss Margaret Fuller. She was one of the first feminists, and quite frankly, as strange as the modern feminists. Though I am a woman, I do not agree with many of the feminist movements, as I believe the idea that a woman can do everything a man can do is a load of hogwash, thus I do not agree with many of Fuller's points she makes in her work. Maybe it is because I have less of a modern perspective than most.
In her work "The Great Lawsuit: Man versus Men, Woman versus Women," she says, "Male and female represent the two sides of the great radical dualism. But, in fact, they aer perpetually passing into one another. Fluid hardens to solid, solid rushes to fluid. There is no wholly masculine man, no purely feminine woman." (1656) This makes a good point for some men being called Mama's boys, but what about those who are girly-girls or men who really act like men? And what makes a man not so masculine?


Short Blog, Pt. I

Elizabeth Drew Stoddard's Lemorne versus Huell leaves the reader feeling somewhat confused. It almost reminds me of Breakfast at Tiffany's, in a way, where the constant question is, "Is she or isn't she?," which is constantly asked of George Peppard's character; and he, as I'm sure many of the readers of this tale, don't know how to respond to that question.
Margaret seems to me to be a woman who truly is a slave to her station, or her place in society. She really has no choice over what she does in life; everything is either decided for her, or the "other choice" really isn't a choice at all. Her meetings with Mr. Uxbridge do not seem to be guided by chance, but rather by the meddling Aunt Eliza. I really do think that she should stick to minding her own business.

I also found their romance to be artificial and more planned than anything else.

That's all for now. My brain is still fried from the paper, so the following blogs may not make much sense.


Hawthorne vs. Apess

I'm changing from Emerson and Poe to Hawthorne vs. Apess. I find these two to be more comparable than Emerson and Poe, since I can't stand reading Poe. His work is demented, in my humble opinion.

Hawthorne's work "The Birth-Mark" does seem to be slightly similar to The Scarlet Letter, except for the fact that Georgiana is killed by her husband. Aylmer seems very much different from Dimmesdale, however. I think I much prefer Dimmesdale and Hester to Georgiana and Aylmer. The latter couple seem underdeveloped, very insecure and are just very odd. Dimmesdale and Hester seem to be more developed characters and feel secure in their stations, as Hester serves as an outsider and Dimmesdale as a preacher. He also seemed to deal with young married couples just starting out as man and wife. It makes one wonder about his own relationship with his wife. However, I have found evidence that he dearly loved Sophia Peabody and thought the world of her.

Apess' work, however, deal with the issue of the natives' unjust treatment by the white majority. He questions their motives and asks why they are taking away their land and attempting to convert them to different religions. Also, if they believe these people to be uncivilized, why do they not make means for the education of these people?

Both authors dealt with different subjects, yet had similar ideals for people. Hawthorne wanted to expose the sometimes tragic outcomes of young married couples and Apess to expose the real truth about the natives and to put forth how they can be better helped. Good going, guys!


Emerson vs. Poe, Pt. I

It seems that Emerson and Poe are quite different in nature. Poe is very focused on the supernatural elements in his work, while Emerson is more of what we would consider a modern-day hippie. I forgot my book at home; will post more later. :)


Boudinot Stockton vs. Wheatley

I found both Annis Boudinot Stockton and Phillis Wheatley to be somewhat similar in theme, as both wrote to George Washington. However, Stockton is writing to him two years later than Wheatley did, as her poem is dated in 1757, and Wheatley’s is 1755. I also think that Wheatley’s poem is a bit easier to read than Stockton’s writing.
First off, “venal bards a despots brown adorn,/In every wreath they find a rugged thorn/And praise a Satire proves-?” The first part of this poem seems to make sense, but I’m tending to doze off after this part. She seems to go on and on about the soldiers and the war, whereas Wheatley is ten lines shorter and manages to praise and exult this hero with fewer words.
Secondly, I am just not a huge fan of her writing style. She seems much wordier than Wheatley, as I’ve said, but also I just don’t like it. There’s something about it- maybe her choice of words or her dressing it up- that drives me nuts. Wheatley’s seems to me to be far more peaceful at the beginning and begins to make a cry for charge at the end. Stockton’s praises and goes through all of the battle glory and then calms down at the finis of the poem. Hmm…
Thirdly, Wheatley’s composition just seems much more interesting to me. The momentum seems to build throughout the poem and goes into a musical crescendo at the end, whereas Stockton’s seems to drag, then speed up, then drag again. I feel her poem could use some more speed and oomph, but that’s just my opinion.


I'm Very Bad with Titles

Anyway, I can't post a blog, because I've been using the online syllabus, and now it won't work. Wait an hour or two and I'll have a new one up.

Wigglesworth and Rowlandson, Pt. II

Wigglesworth describes the process of judging as Christ the Judge divides the "sheep," or the righteous ones, and the "goats," or the wicked ones. He describes those on Christ's right as divided even more so. One group is comprised of holy martyrs who "For his dear name, suffering shame, calamity and woe." The second group is that of those believers who "loved much, that had not such a trial," meaning that they had not suffered like the martyrs, but had great faith. The third group is that of the lambs "whose faith was weak, yet true."
Standing at his left hand are the goats, "all whining hypocrites,/Who for self ends did seem Christ's friends, but fostered guileful sprites,"and "now must not come near" the sheep and lambs, for fear of dirtying the lambs. He also goes into detail about the many sinners and then how both sheep and goats approach the throne and how each is judged, some calling upon the graciousness and clemency of God.
While Wigglesworth's tale may be chilling and drive fear into the hearts of many, Rowlandson writes a stirring tale called "A Narrative of the Captivity and Restoration of Mrs. Mary Rowlandson," in which she describe how her family and those surrounding her are murdered by the Indians and she and her only surviving child (who later dies) become captives of the tribe. While her account was written weeks after the events that occurred, she is able to somehow describe everything in great detail: the bloodied bodies, babies being taken from their mothers, etc., which makes one wonder if she did have ulterior motives in writing this. Did she really record all of this information just for her own personal memory, or did she really mean for this to be published for the community to see and use as a tool from which to learn and develop a stronger faith in God?


Wigglesworth and Rowlandson, Pt. I

As I sit here with a sprained ankle, reading these two authors, both seem to have similar backgrounds. Wigglesworth is a Puritan minister and Rowlandson is the wife of a minister. However, both seem to have little to none in common otherwise.
Wigglesworth's faith seems to be that of a strong, fire-and-brimstone Puritan. He wrote a piece entitled "The Day of Doom," entailing what all will occur on the Judgment Day, the day on which each person's fate will be decided by Christ the Judge.

Continued in next post...


New Literature Blog

This is my new literature blog. I didn't want to create another account, so I'm using this one. For those who are confused, I created a blog for Music Apprec. class written by Jacques Offenbach, but I'm not him (obviously, since he's been dead for many years!) Sorry for any confusion!




21 January, 1857
It has been nearly a year since I have written in my journal! Oy! So many things have occurred since I last wrote. I have been producing several shows at my theatre here in the Champs-Elysses, and each has been tremendously successful! Everyone loves them! They love them so much that most of them go straight on to play in London!
Right now, I am trying to make my "big break." I have been told that a two-act version of Orphée aux Enfers (Orpheus in the Underworld) would be nice, but I do not know if it will be successful or not. Hmm...I shall write more some other day.