Gg: litr 6, 7, and final

LITR221 – WEEK 6

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Literary Movements & Cultural Impacts

This week’s reading lessons:

At Fault by Kate Chopin (Available as a Kindle download from Amazon)

The Octopus: A Story of California by Frank Norris, available from Archive.org

This Side of Paradise by F. Scott Fitzgerald, available from Literature Project

The Prophet of the Great Smoky Mountains by Mary Noailles Murfree, available from Archive.org

Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton, available from Archive.org

 

Part I: This week you learned a little bit about several of the major movements in American literature. Which of these movements do you see reflected in the novel you are reading? Do you see influence of more than one? Give specific cited examples that point to these movements.

Part II: Now, it’s time for a little research on your part. Find an article about a historical event occurring within the ten years prior to your novel’s publication. Please cite this article in your post and provide a link, if appropriate. Discuss how this event impacted the work you are reading. The effect may be subtle. For instance, there may be no mention of war, and yet you may recognize possible effects of war within the characters.

Submission Instructions: Main post is required in at least 300 words. Use quotations to support your points.  Please engage two of your classmates in their forum posts to help further our conversation.  Respond to classmates’ posts in at least 100-150 words each.

 

Student Response #1 – Martin

Part I: In the Novel I am reading, The Outsiders, by S.E. Hinton, There are hints of Romanticism, Realism, Regionalists and Modernism.

For Romanticism, the main character in the book is a young 14-year-old dreamer, named Ponyboy Curtis, who as a “Greaser” lives a life of a have not, however, his view on the world is one of beauty focusing on the nature surrounding him, even referencing Robert Frost’s Poem Nothing Gold Can Stay, which speaks to the beauty and cycle of life.  Additionally, Ponyboy reads a copy of Margaret Mitchell’s novel, Gone With the Wind and relates the traits of southern gentlemen going into battle to those of his Greaser Gang of friends.

Turning to the Realism in the book, the author, who was just 16 herself when writing it, focused on current situations and social clicks found in communities across America.  Hinton demonstrated a great ability to portray the Haves versus the Have-nots, while developing the premise that both sides are discontent and wanting in some way or another.

For the Regionalist aspect of Realism, the book focuses on Midwest life in Oklahoma, describing vehicles (Stingrays and Corvairs) as well as clothing (Jean Jackets and Madras Coats) and even common slang lingo from the 1960s.

Finally just like the Mondernism movement, the book constantly looks for solutions to break away from these societal clicks and move forward.  Additionally the book confronts adolescent issues like smoking, drinking, and the need to fit in.  This contention is well painted in the book when there was a major rumble between the Greasers and the Socs.  Ultimately the two who kick off the whole fight were likely old high school friends as they had been the quarterback and tailback on the school’s football team years prior.

Part II: The 1950s were a time of change, in the forefront was the Civil Rights movement and one major news events for this was in 1957 when faced with great hatred African American youth sought to attend Little Rock Central High School (http://life.time.com/history/little-rock-nine-1957-photos/#11).  This Time article covering the event was one that spanned the nation as Time was one of the Nation’s Largest magazines at the time.  Though Hinton’s book was focused more on economic inequality she was from as well as wrote about neighboring Oklahoma.  The hatred faced by these 9 brave students, as they were “Outsiders” in their own right had to have influenced Hinton’s upbringing and likely fostered her need to write in 1967 about the strife and turmoil faced by all youth of that era.

 

Student Response #2 – Dana

 

Part I:  In the novel I’m reading, “The Prophet of the Great Smoky Mountains,” by Mary Noailles Murfree, so far I see “romanticism” when the author is constantly explaining, in great detail, the mountainside, and the cove where the story is set. It starts off almost immediately and that’s what initially drew me to the story in the first place. “Always enwrapped in the illusory mists, always touching the evasive clouds, the peaks of the Great Smoky Mountains are like some barren ideal, that has bartered for the vague isolations of a higher atmosphere the material values of the warm world below” (Murfree, 1).  If you have ever driven through the Great Smoky Mountains, you can easily picture what is describes in that line. It is an amazing, peaceful, beautiful place.

 

In this novel, “realism” is first really apparent, although you can see it earlier in the story, when the sheriff and his men show up at Dorinda’s family’s cabin looking for the fugitive, Rick Tyler and demanding that the family tell them if they have seen him and where he is. Funny enough though, the sheriff does not bother to ask at first and the family feeds him and his men then when they finally get down to business a lot of time has passed and Rick has had plenty of time to put distance between himself and the sheriff and his men. The sheriff gets very angry after he asks if they have seen a mountain man in their area. Granny asks “I hain’t hearn who it air yit” (Murfree, 23).  She is playing dumb with the sheriff and he finally gives the name of the man they are looking for and focuses his questioning on Dorinda and warns her not to “trifle with the law” and tell him if she has seen Rick and that she better not lie or she will end up in the jail down in Shaftesville (Murfree, 24). 

 

Part II:  So far in my reading I haven’t come across any events in the 10 years prior to my book’s publishing that would affect it, at least not any specific acts, other than the mention of a speech that Henry Clay made against Andrew Jackson back in 1840. It is clear that some people of the cove have their political sides and hold strongly to them. The Prophet Kelsey’s grandfather speaks of the speech and how “forty thousan’ people kem ter hear” (Murfree, 87). I got a chuckle out of Obediah saying (I’ll type it in normal English so it’s easier for you to understand) that there may be some good Democrats and there may be some good Republicans but they make a powerful team when they’re put together. And when the law steps in and says they’re over age then they just need to accept it and shut up. Especially when they keep voting for “Andy Jackson” for president, out of respect for his memory, in every election since the “tormentin’ old critter died” (Murfree, 90).

 

LITR221 – WEEK 7

Part I: Post your thesis for the final project. Be sure that it takes a position and specifically addresses the literature you are discussing.

Part II: Post a rough draft of your final project (at least 300 words).

This week your replies should be very specific. Please include the following in each reply:

If you read the same book, please note one point you agree with and one that you did not (or you think it wasn’t fully proven in the essay). Support your dissent with evidence from the text. If you read a different book, focus on your classmates definition of American.

Please offer one possible change that might help your classmate build a stronger essay.

Submission Instructions: Main post is required in at least 300 words. Use quotations to support your points.  Please engage two of your classmates in their forum posts to help further our conversation.  Respond to classmates’ posts in at least 100-150 words each.

 

Student Response #1 – Kerron

For this final project I chose to focus on a character named Sean from the novel I read titled The Day the Streets Stood Still. Sean had a vision of what the American dream should be or what he thought it would be rather. Like most black kids in the inner cities in America Sean tended to see the American dream as what the older guys in the neighborhood has and flaunts around in. Not knowing what they have been through to get into or how most will end up from living that type of life. This is not only Sean’s story but most kids that grow up in poverty and in single parent households tend to see this as a perfect lifestyle.

The first part or problem of it all is the economic difference and quality of life in urban areas compared to suburban areas. The social influence makes it easy to draw these young kids in to the life because they see it every day. This social influence comes from all the flashy cars with nice shiny rims and to these kids it’s all they want as it is what the people have they end up looking up too. Sean’s story was in short how he ended up on top and then fell to the bottom. While Sean’s mother was trying to keep him from the life she lived it was still infringed on him because she would throw parties at her house. Sean would not be sleep all the time and at times made a game of playing hide and seek from room to room in the house through all the commotion. This lifestyle chosen for Sean came about after his mother was murdered and he was left to fend for himself. When Sean saw his mother in the house that day after school with her neck slit from ear to ear it was a major turning point in his life. The loveable young boy was now growing into a cold hearted young man.

 

Student Response #2 – Jared

The Prophet of The Great Smokey Mountains has proven too be a very interesting read.  I have enjoyed reading the novel, and I have gotten everything that I had expected.  Now, as far as the final project goes, I will admit I had a hard time establishing who was a “true American”.  I found the problem between the mountaineers and the Tennessee State Authority to be hard to decipher between the two. I just couldn’t quite decide who was being more American than the other.  After several readings, I finally came to a conclusion.  Even though it was right before me the whole time, I kept missing it.  At first, I didn’t agree with the approach the characters took in the novel, I am assuming this is why I had such a hard time deciding who was representing America the most.

At first, I sided with the mountain folks.  I felt that the way they were living was fine and that this was the way they were raised.  I didn’t feel the State Government, or any government for that matter had a right to encroach on the way these people decided to live.  America is all about rights and freedoms for all people.  The right to worship the way you choose, dress the way you want, and to live the way want.  As long as it isn’t harming anyone else.  This is something we are seeing more and more today, people standing up for themselves.  The more I read though, I began to see the Sheriff as a true American.

Even though I didn’t agree with what he was trying to enforce, he was doing his job.  He took an oath to uphold the law, no matter how unpopular that law or rule may be.  He was trying his best to complete his job and carry out the duties set before him.

For my Thesis, I have chosen, “Sheriff Greene is a true American servant”.

 

 

Literature – FINAL project – due 17 January

The final project should show evidence of careful and thoughtful development of the subject with attention to appropriate depth and detail. The project should be clear, coherent, and well organized. It should be free of errors that hinder meaning and free of plagiarized material.

Course Project Description

For your project, you should choose a character from the novel you have read. Explain what makes that character uniquely American. Please feel free to think outside the box. There are characters within these novels that may not be legally or technically American but are tremendous examples of the American spirit. This gives you a lot of opportunity to really explore a character that interests you.

You will need to incorporate many aspects of the novel to prove your case. Be sure to look at issues such as imagery, dialect, social and cultural influences, and point of view, among others.

For the Week 5 discussion, you mentioned the novel “This Side of Paradise” by F. Scott Fitzgerald.

Submission Instructions:

Your essay should be in MLA Style and approximately 5-6 pages, not including the Work(s) Cited page. As with most academic writing, this essay should be written in third person. Please avoid both first person (I, we, our, etc.) and second person (you, your).

In the upper left-hand corner of the paper, place your name, the professor’s name, the course name, and the due date for the assignment on consecutive lines. Double space your information from your name onward, and don’t forget a title. All papers should be in Times New Roman font with 12-point type with one-inch margins all the way around your paper. All paragraph indentations should be indented five spaces (use the tab key) from the left margin. All work is to be left justified. When quoting lines in literature, please research the proper way to cite short stories, plays, or poems.

 

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