Earthsea- Literary styles Blog Post

Throughout the first chapter of Ursula Le Guin’s novel Wizards of Earthsea you can see various literary tools in use. By using these tools she is able to put emphasis on specific plot points. The most commonly used literary devices include Foreshadowing, Imagery, Parallelism, and Personification. These styles assist the author in bringing attention to certain plot points within the novel. Firstly, Foreshadowing is used at the very beginning to bring attention to magic throughout the novel. Foreshadowing such as “His life is told of in the Deed of Ged and in many songs, but this is a tale of the time before his fame before the songs were made,” this quote shows us how important the main character is automatically centering the novel about his journey (1). This quotation is also a great form of parallelism and focuses us on the before effects of Ged’s journey. Both these devices are trying to focus the reader of Ged and his journey to fame. Moreover, Imagery and Personification are used in the battle with the Kargs when Duny uses a smoke spell to save the village. Le Guin uses personification to describe the smoke as though it is alive, drawing the reader to the unearthliness of magic as a whole and to Duny’s power. Imagery is also used to the same effect. Overall, Le Guin uses literary tools to focus the plot of the novel.

Anticipation Guide- Wizard of Earthsea Blog Post

Disagree: A person or a thing must have a name to truly exist.

Why does a name represent an object . . . because we assigned it. The world of tangible ideas and objects is dictated by words and nouns. These nouns are most often names. However, it is possible for objects to exist without names. Firstly, objects are not confined to their given name. This is proven since many objects have multiple names in different languages and cultures. No object has one name and neither does any person. People have many names as well and are often called different things by different people. Secondly, before we assigned names to objects these objects were still a part of the universe. One such example is before North America was discovered by humans, North America still existed. Contrastly, although names do not define the existence of objects our perception is often limited to our vocabulary. Therefore you could say that our perception and understanding of objects and people is limited to our naming structure at a given time.

Thematic Statements LACE Interview

The success of others around us often corresponds with our personal successes.

Enjoyment of day to day tasks contributes to your overall happiness.

Making choices based on your strengths as an individual often benefit your community.

Eminent Introductory Blog Post

“I see but say nothing”

My Eminent Person for 2018 is Queen Elizabeth I of England. Queen Elizabeth was a revolutionary female ruler in a misogynistic English society. Elizabeth created a new political system and steadied the chaotic rulership that was previously apparent in the English monarchy. Similarly, to Elizabeth I have a passion for learning from conflict. She expresses that “the past cannot be cured” therefore we should learn from our mistakes and move on with our lives. Unlike many female rulers, Queen Elizabeth held her power on her own without a male suitor. At a young age, she began courting kings and rulers from other lands to befit her kingdom, always keeping them enthralled by her every whim. Elizabeth ruled with logic and honesty, she appealed to society because she was different and the same. By being a female ruler, she was entitled to a stereotypical weakness in her reputation that many of the gentry sought to exploit. However, this weakness of femininity turned out to be exactly what England needed. England was still weak from the conflicts of Henry IV’s gallivanting escapades and numerous wives. Moreover, the five years after Henry IV’s death was constantly chaotic due to multiple rulers who put their own agenda before their people. Although Elizabeth was Protestant and reinstated a protestant church she still inspired a sense of stability that was sought after during this time. Facing the challenge of a divided nation with a clear head is just one of the reasons she is a worthy eminent choice. By being level headed she won her country over, and England enjoyed a peaceful stable atmosphere duringelizabeth-i her reign. I admire Elizabeth as a steady character under extenuatingly stressful circumstances. I hope t emulate her level head in my future. Queen Elizabeth I will be remembered for centuries to come as an entrepreneur of English political advances in the 15th century. She was an advancement in her field of monarchist rulership as a listen quiet hand guiding her nation. Queen Elizabeth I was a revolutionary of morals at the time, as well as stating that “I am Elizabeth Tudor and I will bow to no man” as a solitary figure in women’s rights during her era. Although there is no doubt that she is eminent there are still barriers to me completing my Eminent project. Queen Elizabeth lived over 500 years ago, and there is limited information from sources regarding factual untampered written works. To address these barriers during my speech I will ensure to integrate her voice from her own written works into my expression of her character. One way that I am like my notable is that both she and I have a strength of mediating groups and working within a structured society. Much like Elizabeth I I enjoy creating a positive atmosphere during group projects and work to maintain a steady head when completing projects.

The Danger of a Single Story -Blog Post

How might we begin to “reject the single stor[ies]” in our lives?

In our lives we all are all made aware of the danger of a single story, our teachers tell us to research, and our parents tell us we don’t understand the world; however, our brain still connects our limited experiences to single definitions of our surroundings. Taking steps to reject the single stories in our lives will allow us to more thoroughly understand the world around us. The TED Talk the danger of a single story offers prime examples from the author’s life of single stories. When she speaks of a story of the houseboy we can see that “their poverty was the only story I had of them” as she could not imagine Filly’s family being anything but poor. Some ways we could potentially revoke this single story would be to find out more information about Filly and his family. By understanding Filly’s situation in more depth, we can avoid creating their stereotype of being poor. “The single story creates stereotypes” which make our views of the world generic and uninformed, if we want to perceive the world through truth then we must educate ourselves on our world. By informing ourselves on issues and people using multiple perspectives, gives us the tools to avoid the single-story stereotype. As “the problem with these stereotypes is not that they are untrue, but that they are incomplete” by completing the perspectives of our lives we make these stories complete. Another way to avoid the danger of a single story is to consciously try to stop yourself from making assumptions when you are unsure of having all the information. Using these two strategies we can work towards obliterating single stories in our life.

Independent Novel Study Scene 1

The scene that I am have chosen from The Life of Pi is Chapter 8 when the narrator discusses animal cruelty and witnesses the dark side of his zoo friends. Right away Pi impresses me with his unique view of the world, “we commonly say in the trade that the most dangerous animal in the zoo is man”, starting off with such a powerful quote we can immediately see that Pi has a very specific outlook on interactions between creatures (41). He believes strongly that “cruelty is more active than direct” and that people often do not realize their impact on creatures. Holding such an opinion is admirable, as the public undoubtedly does not share the same stance. These quotes reveal that Pi is dedicated to his own image of the world and relies on personal experience to shape his beliefs. When his father demonstrates the fury of wild animals in front of his eyes, Pi fears the very animals that he has grown up with, even as his want is to innocently ignore this side of the creatures as his “knees started quaking” at the sight (47). I feel that Pi is being reasonable in his reaction, if I had grown up in a zoo I would have done no differently. This whole section is about the internal conflicts of Pi realizing the world has a darker side. Personally, I feel that every child realizes that the world is not light and fluffy, for me it happened slower about grade 5 when I began to deal with my own problems. I think that the character development during this section is a work of art as it is slow enough to be believable but fast enough to capture the audience. Pi is not necessarily someone to emulate as he is still a kid figuring the world out, but his interesting way of viewing the world is interesting none the less.

Emil Thematic Paragraph

Why do we help others? This is a question we all ask ourselves, why help people when theoretically our innate desire should be to help ourselves. Evolution would have weeded out those who showed compassion, unless there is a benefit unknown to us without further analysis. Stuart McLean attempts to answer this question through his story Emil. Throughout this story Morley learns that kindness to others is often reciprocated in unexpected ways. This is evident when Morley’s kindness to Emil is reciprocated through him giving “Morley five hundred dollars” (119). All Morley’s good deeds towards Emil pay off when he chooses to gift her 500$ of his lottery money. In turn Morley decides to “give it back to him, bit by bit” as a thank you (119). Morley started this trend by first, simply by asking “What is his name?” (110). By simply taking an interest in a stranger’s life Morley shows unconditional compassion, it doesn’t matter that “he showed up one morning in front of her husband’s record store wearing a pair of ripped pants and slippers,” she doesn’t care about his appearance (109). It doesn’t matter to her what he does or how annoying her husband found him; Morley was going to make up her own mind about Emil. Moreover, once Morley had made up her mind she was not afraid to publicly defend what in her household was an unpopular opinion. “He’s driving away business” Dave is constantly saying (109). “Call the police” “take the plants back” her children exclaim after Emil takes her plants (117). However Morley decides simply askes “Will you show me your garden tomorrow” even after catching him in the act of stealing (116). By giving him the benefit of the doubt, she has taken a leap of sympathy ignorant to any of the others in her family. By forgiving Emil of taking her plants she shows him a kindness that would unknowingly later be reciprocated in the form of money. However, the opposite happens to Dave, since he has in the past not shown kindness to Emil he does not get gifted any prize money. Why Dave doesn’t receive the prize money is most likely because of this lack of respect and kindness. When Dave asks, “I hear you’re the big winner. When do I get my share” it is evident that he does not respect Emil (119). This lack of respect is especially evident since Dave does not think Emil can tell whether people are his friends or not, “he was sure Emil would offer him money” “after all, he had known him as long as anyone else” (119). Due to Dave’s lack of kindness he never received any money. Due to these extenuating examples, we can see that kindness is frequently reciprocated when exhibited in a selfless manner. Overall, Morley learned to be kind to others and you will be repaid.

Independent Novel Study- last year example

Independent Novel Study

Summary

Magyk is the first book of a seven-book series about a boy named Septimius Heap.  When Septimus was born he was pronounced dead to his parents and ushered from the room by a mysterious midwife. That same night Silas Heap, his father, had been out in the woods and had stumbled across a baby girl abandoned in the snow by the new Extraordinary Wizard. This book is 563 pages long and is a fantasy fiction Novel.

 

Scene 1

Boy 412 impresses me when he decides to betray the wizards, even though they save his life and take him away from the abusive young army. He truly believes that, “The Young army was full of tests. Terrifying Surprise Tests always sprung on you in the middle of the night, just as you had fallen asleep […] This must be one of those Do-or-Die Tests” (79). This shows a great strength in faith and loyalty, however a weakness in making decisions for himself. He doesn’t necessarily want to betray them, but he truly believes that he has too. This shows Boy 412`s will to live above all else, since he doesn’t consider that they saved his life. In addition, it represents his fear of death. An internal conflict portrayed is his unease of the situation, and the fight of to trust the wizards or not. An example would be, “Boy 412 gritted his teeth; he wasn’t sure, but right now it felt horribly like this was the Die part of the test. Whatever it was, there wasn’t much he could Do” (79). I can connect to Boy 412 in this scene, since once my mom asked another parent to pick me and my siblings up from school. I was uneasy all the way home since I wasn’t sure what was going on. I feel that in Boy 412`s place I would do the same thing and not trust the Wizards, since it would be a very scary, and uneasy situation, and I would probably just do what I knew from prior experience. I wouldn’t say that Boy 412 is a role model since he is so hesitant to trust people, but I wouldn’t say that he is a bad person, he just hasn’t been raised in a way that it is easy for him to trust people.

 

Scene 2

Boy 412 impresses me when he saves Jenna and Nicko from the Hunter, since it shows how resourceful he is. “He wasn`t sure what to say. No one had ever given him a present before”. This quote is evidence of how he cares about people but does not know how to express himself. This representation shows strength in going outside his comfort zone, and being open to the people and customs surrounding him. Over only a few days he managed to switch his entire mindset towards wizards. This relates to Boy 412’s fear of wizards that he is constantly trying to overcome. An external conflict portrayed throughout this scene is the conflict between Boy 412 and the Hunter during the ambush. “In Boy 412’s mind they had now progressed from Watch and Wait to Ambush”.  I can relate to this character in this section of the book through one of my previous experiences of when we installed a home phone. I remember going through different stages of fear, anxiety, and at last acceptance with the new gadget. I believe that in the same situation it would have taken me a lot longer to get used to all the new people, and objects now surrounding this character, since I am not a very outgoing person when it comes to breaking habit. In this scene, I feel that Boy 412 was a prime example of a generic role model as the hero of the scene. However, he is not very sure of himself and most of his decisions were made on pure luck. Such as, when he decided to come back to the cottage even though it was not the safe thing to do. Considering this although he was the hero, I don’t think that he is a role model.

 

Scene 3

An impressing attribute of Boy 412 demonstrated in this scene is his willingness to keep an open mind about everything and everyone. He demonstrates this when he chooses to become Marcia`s apprentice, even after all his suffering the wizarding world had put him through. Moreover, a strength outlined by this scene is his curiosity and openness to learning. Such as the fact that he was so curious about the dragon ring he found, he was willing to hand it over to Marcia to find out what it was. However, this is also the centre of his weakness of constantly doubting himself. An example of this from the book is, “Boy 412 sighed. He had loved the ring, and just being close to it had made him feel happy, but he wasn’t surprised to hear it belonged to someone else. It was to beautiful for him”. This passage also shows us his greatest want of becoming a wizard, as well as his fear of not being good enough. “[…] Boy 412, bemused. Why was she asking him”? In addition, this scene outlines Boy 412`s internal conflict, this conflict is his decision to become Marcia`s apprentice. He wants to be the apprentice but his fear of not being good enough holds him back. A connection to Boy 412 that I can make is being scared of not being good enough. In 2015 I was asked to join the BC national synchronized swimming team, I was so scared that my friends and family had to convince me to take the opportunity. In the same situation as Boy 412 I would probably not take the apprenticeship. This is because I always make the safe decision and becoming the apprentice is not necessarily a very safe position. However, I admire Boy 412 in this scene for taking a risk and utilising all the opportunities open to him. In this scene Boy 412 is a role model for taking risks and making the most out of what you are given.

 

 

Character appraisal

Boy 412`s growth throughout the book both through his personality, and through learning was amazing. Boy 412 changed his entire attitude towards wizards and learned about how the young army manipulated and used him. Throughout the story his personality changed so that by the end of the book he was more open, and fought for his own values and beliefs. He no longer believed everything people told him. “Then he looked at the people around him and how different his life had become since he had met them. He felt so happy there was really nothing else he wanted.” This passage shows his epiphany, that he finally had a family and somewhere he belonged.

 

Themes

There are many very potent themes communicated throughout Magyk. One of the larges themes is the importance of family. The author is trying to communicate how the people around us are our greatest weaknesses, as well as our greatest assets. This is shown when he makes the villain use relationships against the heroes of the story. Such as when Jenna is held at knifepoint as a bargaining tool. However, the author also communicates how having people around you to help you through dark times is important. He does this by making all the good people in the story team up against the villain. The author is trying to communicate the way people around us impact our lives in both a positive and negative way.

 

Evaluation

I would recommend Magyk to anyone who enjoys fantasy fiction novels. However, one faulty section of the book is the way they don’t have enough detail surrounding most of the characters in the story. It would be easier to connect to if the characters were written in more depth. Nevertheless, I immensely enjoyed reading the book and would recommend it to all fantasy book lovers.

 

Rating

 

I would give my book a four out of five-star rating since it was well written and I enjoyed the storyline. However, I feel that the character detail could have been a lot deeper, so that the audience could more easily connect to the characters.

 

 

Theory Wars Blog Post

The most beneficial lens when viewing Star Wars by George Lucas is Social Power. This lens encompasses the violent power struggle between the different political groups within the movie. Through a large struggle between social classes (Imperials and Rebels) we can observe the specific differences in class. One such example is the clothing of the two groups. The Imperials wear shiny, and clean uniforms as a symbol of their power and wealth. The Rebels wear dirty ragtag clothing with little uniformity; through only the appearance of their clothing we can automatically tell the social class difference. Another example of an instance that demonstrates the social class difference is when the Death Star destroys Alderon. By destroying the planet, the Imperials demonstrate their unchecked social and political power; simply by clicking a button the Imperials were able to eradicate a planet full of rebel sympathizers. Using this evidence, we can conclude that Star Wars is a depiction of a social class power struggle. Moreover, by using the social Power lens we create a deeper understanding and perspective on economic factors in external conflicts, and a more comprehensive understanding of the political views represented. Throughout the movie we come across many instances when the economic power of a group determines the fate of a scene. Such as how Hans Solo is only convinced to help Leah when a reward of great value is promised; we have already learned that Solo is incredibly cautious about the, so why would he not want to help Leah. The economical reason is quite simple, merely the fact that his economic stability is not sound enough for him to put emphasis on any other aspect of his life. This is shown even more in the beginning when Solo talks to Jaba the Hut about his debt, so we then can infer that Solo has been taught to worry about money before all else. In Solo’s example you can clearly see the inconsistency of wealth. The same trend can be seen within most of the working class, and civilians such as Luke’s aunt and uncle. However, the economic situation for the Rebels and the Empire is much different. The Empire is shown to have practically infinite funds. This is shown through the technology we see them use throughout the movie. Such as the Death Star, Star Destroyers, and their pod fighters. In contrast, the Rebels technology is dusty, old, and altogether less futuristic looking. In this way we can infer a large disparity in economic stability between the Imperials and the Alliance. Lastly, the Social Power lens also brings political perspectives into a new light. The Rebel alliance is quite obviously a closer Left-wing perspective. This is exemplified by the social hierarchy of the Alliance; the Alliance shows they promote based on skill not class by most of the officials wearing the same clothing as the soldiers. The rebels believe in managing with the people and inspiring individuality. Unlike the Rebels the Imperials believe in a more Right-wing approach to management. They promote based on social class and leaders are segregated from the workforce. In this way we can create a better understanding of political perspectives in our own world as well. Overall, when reviewing the Social Power lens of Star Wars we can understand the social class, economic, and political perspectives found within the movie in a new light.