Please take out a notebook. You need three sections Journals Literary Terms Notes on texts
In this Power Point, when I talk about • STYLE terms will be yellow • THEME will be red
LITERARY TERMS-- Style LITERARY TERMS YOU SHOULD KNOW • Point of View (handout) • Tone (handout) • Imagery • Surrealism • Stream of Consciousness ___________ • THEME (not style)
Two areas of study:STYLE and THEME • STYLErefers to Formal aspects of the story; how the story is told. Deals with Point of View, Plot Structure, Tone, Imagery, etc. (Modernism experiments with style.) • THEME refers to ideas or truths about life. (These are also specifically Modern.)
“Memento Mori”STYLE • Plot– Major gaps reflecting subjective view of time (also a theme here) • Each 3rd person “chapter” happens multiple times (indicated by “maybe”) • The plot could be cyclical--the end leads back to the beginning and could be interchanged • Point of View– experimental: • use of two P.O.V.’s • Third Person Limited and Second Person
Memento Mori Themes
SELF /Consciousness(this is “subject”– below are questions to build THEME) • How do we define ourselves– “I think, therefore I am”? (Descartes) Are you what you believe you are? (a good person– what about how you cheated/lied/stole?) • Are you the sum of your memories? (What about what you have forgotten or altered?) • Are you the sum of your actions? • Are you what mommy thinks you are? (What about when she– or your wife– is gone?) • FRACTURED SENSE OF SELF
Life/ existence • Can we define our own lives and give them meaning– rather than look for meaning from God, social institutions, mommy, etc. (You get yours from mommy) • Is there an objective moral guideline for that purpose? (Does God judge it? Can “to get the most stuff” be a valid purpose then?) • LIFE IS MEANINGLESS/ ONLY WE GIVE IT MEANING
The Nature of Time • Though we measure it with minutes and seconds and such, it is subjective. Consider: • “Time flies when you are having fun” • Time is dragging by right now And yet a minute is always sixty seconds… EVIDENCE IN THE TEXT: • Gaps in plot • Use of “Maybe” • Earl’s comments about time
Alienation • From friends and family • Society– its rewards (jobs, status) and punishments (prison) • God– His love and his rules (Via the first two bullets)
Evil • Without the rewards or punishments of society, are people inherently evil? • Can you do bad things but not be a bad person? • Is there such a thing as evil or do circumstances just cause/allow bad things to happen? (Which brings us to…)
stream of consciousness • a narrative mode that seeks to portray an individual's point of view by giving the written equivalent of the character's thought processes: • a loose interior monologue, characterized by associative leaps in syntax and punctuation that can make the prose difficult to follow. • often depicted as overheard in the mind (or addressed to oneself) • or in connection to his or her actions.
After I Was Thrown in the Water and Before I Drowned • Dave Eggers
More Keys to understanding • The Language– how does it change? • The images/ details: • The tone changes from ___________ to __________
denotationa literal meaning of the word connotationan association (emotional or otherwise) which the word evokes • For example, both "woman" and "chick" have the denotation "adult female" in North American society, but "chick" has somewhat negative connotations, while "woman" is neutral.
For another example of connotations, consider the following: • negative • There are over 2,000 vagrants in the city. • neutral • There are over 2,000 people with no fixed address in the city. • positive • There are over 2,000 homeless in the city.
I see in the windows. I see what happens. I see the calm held-together moments and also the treachery and I run and run. You tell me it matters, what they all say. I have listened and long ago I stopped. Just tell me it matters and I will listen to you and I will want to be convinced. You tell me that what is said is making a difference that those words are worthwhile words and mean something. I see what happens. I live with people who are German. They collect steins. They are good people. Their son is dead. I see what happens.
The squirrels have things to say; they talk before and after we jump. Sometimes while we're jumping they talk. • I don't know why the squirrels watch us, or why they talk to us. They do not try to jump the gap. The running • and jumping feels so good even when we don't win or fall into the gap it feels so good when we run and jump-and when we are done the squirrels are talking to us, to each other in their small jittery voices
Some of them laugh. Franklin is angry. He walks slowly to where they're sitting; they do not move. He grabs one in his jaws and crushes all its bones. Their voices are always talking but we forget they are so small, their head and bones so tiny.
When and why does the verb tense change?When and why does the dog use big words? • The verb tense and diction changes from present to past tense when Stephen is reflecting on events or ideas. He has had time to “intellectualize” – organize, analyze, and judge– the events. • The Dog names seem weird– what do you make of them? • P.O.V. From where is the dog speaking? • He is dead. Remember? (BTW, that is a full sentence, with “you”, understood. Second Person POV.)
Franklin was angry and took five or six of them in his mouth, crushing them, tossing them one after the other. The other dogs watched; none of them knew if squirrel killing made them happy or not.
Narrative • Stream of Consciousness* • Repetition of words (“grabbing”) • “Big” words for reflection (ravishing) • Tense– present tense/ past tense when he dies • Plot goes beyond Story
How We Are Hungry • The characters and narrators in How We Are Hungry, in which longer stories are interspersed with some of Eggers's Guardian pieces, find themselves on the edge—on the verge of breakdowns, breakups and other crises… • His narrative responds in kind, patrolling what lies on and beyond the far edges of speech and thought. In the work of lesser writers—including some of those for whom Eggers has become a talisman—such narration can shrink into an aesthetic of studied faux-inarticulacy ... it is a mark of what Eggers can achieve at his best that his feeling for speech and its limitations rarely hits false notes.
Authors have themes to which they return A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius (2000) and the freewheeling Velocity made a virtue of sheer sprawl; this collection of stories points to another quality, present in those books but perhaps less well noted: Eggers's way with significant omissions and ellipses .
Authors have themes to which they return As Anne Henry has pointed out, 'the gaps and lacunae so often discussed in twentieth-century criticism are not always empty or silent, but filled with pieces of type, marks which have voices of their own', and Eggers's significant gaps and lapses similarly have their silent speeches
THEME: Language fails us Overtly stated: • about human conversation Suggested by: • Steven is his name? • Descriptions of the dog • Language fun—diction, squirrel talk Action versus Talk (Thought/Intellect) • About the squirrels • The Title
Where Are You Going… • Joyce Carol Oates • Inspired by Bob Dylan Song • Written in the sixties. In 1966 which is relevant because…
“It’s All Over Now Baby Blue” Bob Dylan • You must leave now, take what you need, you think will last.But whatever you wish to keep, you better grab it fast.Yonder stands your orphan with his gun,Crying like a fire in the sun.Look out the saints are comin' throughAnd it's all over now, Baby Blue.The highway is for gamblers, better use your sense.Take what you have gathered from coincidence.The empty-handed painter from your streetsIs drawing crazy patterns on your sheets.This sky, too, is folding under youAnd it's all over now, Baby Blue. • The carpet, too, is moving under youAnd it's all over now, Baby Blue.Leave your stepping stones behind, something calls for you.Forget the dead you've left, they will not follow you.The vagabond who's rapping at your doorIs standing in the clothes that you once wore.
All your seasick sailors, they are rowing home.All your reindeer armies, are all going home.The lover who just walked out your doorHas taken all his blankets from the floor.The carpet, too, is moving under youAnd it's all over now, Baby Blue.Leave your stepping stones behind, something calls for you.Forget the dead you've left, they will not follow you.The vagabond who's rapping at your doorIs standing in the clothes that you once wore.Strike another match, go start anewAnd it's all over now, Baby Blue.
IMAGERY A word or group of words in a literary work which appeal to one or more of the senses: sight, taste, touch, hearing, and smell. The use of images serves to intensify the impact of the work.
Imagery: EXAMPLE • The following example of imagery in T. S. Eliot's "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock, " When the evening is spread out against the sky Like a patient etherized upon a table.” Uses images of pain and sickness to describe the evening, which as an image itself represents society and the psychology of Prufrock, himself
STYLE—IMAGES in the story • Music is a constant image in the story and has significance • This is true of America at the time– pop music defined this young generation and led them “astray”
Morality Tale • The theme of youthful, romantic fantasy. The illusory dreams of adolescence blind them to the harsh, dangerous world of maturity. We see Connie separating from the world of living under her mother's wing and breaking through to the other side of sexual maturity, adulthood and independence. Sexual desire can be deadly serious stuff. It takes this experience for Connie learn that. Until Friend pulls up the driveway, she has been flirting with sexuality. Now she will confront its harsher face.
Feminist • The victimization of women is explored, and how men act as predators in our society. The story intensifies the fear and suspense associated with this power differential by putting Connie in an untenable, vulnerable situation from which she has no choice but to leave the house with Arnold Friend. So this story heightens our awareness of this problem. The story asks us: is Connie really independent? Has she left the mother's nest only to live under the protection of the domineering man?
Psychological Lens, sort of: • The story represents a case study in manipulative psychology. Friend coerces Connie through intimidation and identification. He's tracked his prey, understood it, disoriented it, and is now prepared to go in for the kill. A true crime serial killer named Charles Schmid, the Pied Piper of Tucson served as the inspiration for Oates's tale. She makes Arnold Friend into a smooth talking, play acting, and ultimately menacing suitor. When interpreted from this angle, the story becomes a cautionary lesson: "don't let this happen to you!"
Allegory • Dream allegory of death and the maiden. An allegory is a narrative with at least two layers of meaning: the literal and the symbolic. The story, when read as allegory, becomes a kind of coming of age dreamscape where evil (or death) arrives to corrupt what is innocent. Death escorts the woman away from her childhood self. You might interpret this death literally or symbolically.
Symbols • Three– mystical number • Flies • The Highway • Mirrored sunglasses • Possibly cloven or goat-like feet • Take out the ‘r’ – A n old Fiend
Surrealism • movement in visual art and literature, flourishing in Europe between World Wars I and II. Surrealism grew principally out of the earlier Dada movement, which before World War I produced works of anti-art that deliberately defied reason; but Surrealism’s emphasis was not on negation but on positive expression. The movement represented a reaction against what its members saw as the destruction wrought by the “rationalism” that had guided European culture and politics in the past and that had culminated in the horrors of World War I.
According to the major spokesman of the movement, the poet and critic André Breton, who published “The Surrealist Manifesto” in 1924, • Surrealism was a means of reuniting conscious and unconscious realms of experience so completely that the world of dream and fantasy would be joined to the everyday rational world in “an absolute reality, a surreality.” • Drawing heavily on theories adapted from Sigmund Freud, Breton saw the unconscious as the wellspring of the imagination. He defined genius in terms of accessibility to this normally untapped realm, which, he believed, could be attained by poets and painters alike.
Modernism THEMES • Modern theme– the individual separate from the family and community? (Alienation)
THEME: Loss of Innocence/ Risk • There is danger inherent in the desire to grow up. • Story can be read as an allegory: American Society at this time was losing it’s innocence—There is also the “Modern” element of questioning our forward movement or progress while leaving behind traditional values. • The last image…
Violence • We do not truly know ourselves until confronted with violence or death. • Dramatic device for literature because (see above).
The ending • Connie felt the linoleum under her feet; it was cool. She brushed her hair back out of her eyes. Arnold Friend let go of the post tentatively and opened his arms for her, his elbows pointing in toward each other and his wrists limp, to show that this was an embarrassed embrace and a little mocking, he didn't want to make her self-conscious.
She put out her hand against the screen. She watched herself push the door slowly open as if she were back safe somewhere in the other doorway, watching this body and this head of long hair moving out into the sunlight where Arnold Friend waited. • .
"My sweet little blue-eyed girl," he said in a half-sung sigh that had nothing to do with her brown eyes but was taken up just the same by the vast sunlit reaches of the land behind him and on all sides of him—so much land that Connie had never seen before and did not recognize except to know that she was going to it
Surrealism..\..\Honors Modern Fiction\SURREALISM.ppt • The dreamlike MOOD and DIALOGUE at the house • The “wolf in sheep’s clothing” • The last image– SYMBOLIC of her entering the adult world (loss of innocence)
A Good Man is Hard to Find • Flannery O’Conner • Southern Gothic/ the Grotesque (Faulkner) • Catholic • She connects her religious concerns with being southern, for, she says, "while the South is hardly Christ-centered, it is most certainly Christ-haunted"