dol – Canada Roaring 20s

Cause and Consequence

The roaring 20s was the period directly following World War I. As such, Canadians were eager to enjoy life, leading to increased innovation, consumerism, and prosperity. Canada underwent significant cultural, political and economic change. The beginning of the 20s was marked by Canada joining the League of Nations, an intergovernmental organization founded as a result of the Paris Peace Conference which ended World War I. With separate representation in the League of Nations and decision-making autonomy, Canada began to see itself as an independent nation.

Economic Factors:  The 20s began with a weaker economy. As soldiers returned from the war, Canadians initially struggled to find jobs. This sudden economic transition also led to a crash in the farmers wheat market, sparking the establishment of the Progressive Party of Canada. However, Canada’s economy flourished in the mid-twenties, with its dependence shifting from Britain to the United States. Foreign demand for Canadian raw goods such as wheat and timber increased. The urbanization of Canada’s economy shifted the focus of the economy from farming to industry and services. Additionally, the US’s involvement in bootlegging alcohol during Prohibition impacted the Canadian black market. Prohibition was completely in effect in the US, but was repealed in Canada in the 20s and replaced by government regulation. Despite the US’s help in growing Canada’s economy, the US exploited Canada’s reliance through setting up businesses in Canada to avoid paying taxes. The US also smuggled alcohol from Canadian manufacturers.

Social Factors: Though the Roaring 20s may seem like a liberating era, social issues still existed within Canada. After the military discharged soldiers, they struggled to adapt to normal life. Women’s suffrage vastly increased and the role of women changed, including the rise of “flapper” culture and heightened freedom. However, though they were finally allowed to vote, women were still struggling to earn decent wages and combat inequality. In 1929 women were at least granted the right to be considered “persons under Canadian law” which allowed them to qualify for appointment to the Senate. This law excluded Asian women. In the 20s, a collective union of all the workers in Canada called One Big Union (OBU) formed to protest unfair working wages in Canada. 

Technology and quality of life drastically improved. Increased demand for automobiles led to highway construction. Radio stations and music grew in popularity, and medical inventions such as insulin were developed in this era.

Historical Perspective:

Canadians at the time were very optimistic about the 20s. Especially given the ending of the World War, Canadians were excited about the coming times.

Image result for Canada world war I ending newspaper

In terms of labour, labour unions gained traction.

Image result for canada roaring 20s newspaper

Most Canadians did not look favorably upon prohibition.

Image result for canada 1920s newspaper

Continuity and Change

This era dramatically shifted Canadian values. Canada began to view itself as an independent nation with its own values and norms. Unions and farmers led to progressive parties that pushed for welfare for farmers and labourers. Increased women’s suffrage and the implementation of prohibition increased women’s voices in the general public and led to a far more liberal culture. Robert Borden’s administration saw prohibition as a way to use women’s suffrage to gain a second (delayed) mandate and, simultaneously, a victory on the issue of conscription. The rise of advertisements increased consumerism and innovation that led to the development of several products. The Roaring 20s was a time period that sparked the modern norms of today, including women’s rise and economic innovation.

Historical Significance

Math Art with Functions!

The link to my rendition of Mike Wazowski doing the sine function dance:




For this project, I decided to choose Mike Wazowski. I drew inspiration from childhood movie characters and thought Mike would be a fun challenge. I loved his monster appearance and also knew that creating him would require the use of several different functions. I chose not to use an image so I could fully recreate Mike with my own style, meaning I could modify certain aspects of his appearance to fit my liking and to employ the use of a variety of graphs.

Functions used:

Circle function of form  x2 + y2 = r2

Rational function of form x^2 + 2 / x – a rational function uses polynomials in the numerator and denominator – represented as rational fraction

Square root function of form  f(x)=√x

Quadratic function of form y = ax2 + bx + c,

Exponential function of form y = abx

Linear function of form y=mx+b

Sine function of form y=sinx

My strategy is as follows:

First, I wanted to create the main shapes and outlines of his body. I knew that creating the larger shapes ar first would allow me to set some boundaries for the smaller details within his face and arms. I began with the head, which was a simple circle function. I discovered that manipulating the radius would allow me to modify the size of the head. I positioned the head in the middle of the graph about the origin to make future reflections easier, adding values to the x and y values as needed. After creating the head, I moved on the outer outline of his eyeball. I used another circle function with a smaller radius. I then used an inequality to shade in his iris, then proceeded to manipulate the coefficients to create the pupil. I discovered that the coefficients modified the length and width of the circle, meaning that I could also make it an oval.

To make the horns, I used rational functions rather than using quadratic functions. I knew rational functions would give me a softer curve, and I wanted to experiment with using an unconventional function. I added a coefficient to the input within the function in order to perform a horizontal compression. To reflect the horn on the other side of the head, I used a negative reflection of the y-axis by adding a negative sign to the input. I then added restrictions

Now onto the arms (part 1). Though his arms were quite linear and straight in the movie, I wanted to make a realistic arm that was somewhat curved. To do this, I used square root functions to make the bottom half of his arms. I added a coefficient to the input to make his arm the steepness I wanted it to be, using a horizontal compression. I then subtracted a constant from the entirety of the function, vertically shifting the bottom line of his arm to the position I wanted it to be on his body. To create the second line above the bottom line, I manipulated the vertical shift so it would be higher than the previous lines. To make things simple, I reflected both these lines to the other side of his body and used the necessary restrictions.

The elbows were an interesting, albeit ridiculous addition. To make Mike even more lifelike, I wanted to give him monstrous, pointy elbows. I used quadratic equations, as they produce parabolas with vertexes/points. I added a coefficient of 13 to the input to horizontally compress the parabolas. I then reflected the elbow to the other side and used inequalities to shade them in.

The second part of the arms were simple linear equations. I modified the y-intercept to create parallel lines above the initial lines I created. To add the same arms to both sides of his body, I reflected across the y-axis. For his hands, I also used quadratic functions.

For Mike’s legs, I used exponential functions, knowing they have a long, sweeping curve. I didn’t want to repeat the arms process again for the legs, although they are straight in the movie. I wanted to experiment with exponential functions and their potential to create even creepier legs. The first line was relatively straight, but the lower part of the leg needed to be curvier, so I manipulated the number and power in front of the input (which in this case, lies in the exponent). I reflected the leg across the y-axis. I used inequalities to shade this area in, but it was difficult to shade the entirety of the leg in with inequalities without the inequality not covering a certain section or extending too far into his head. For his feet, I used a quadratic equation (not function) by switching the inputs and outputs in the quadratic equation to make it sideways. I reflected this across the y-axis to create both feet.

In order to make the smile, I knew I could restrict a sine function to use its curve/dips. I inputted a sine function and restricted the x value so I ended up with a portion of the function. For the upper line of the smile, I used a quadratic function with a small slope in order to make it flat. Creating the teeth was a painful process. I used a large number of linear functions, creating new lines by manipulating the slopes from positive to negative repeatedly to create triangles and restricting them as needed.

Just for fun, I added a blue hat (representation of his MonstersU hat) and rainbow eyelashes. I liked the creative freedom of not using a reference photo. For the eyelashes, I used linear equations. For the hat, I used a quadratic equation.

This project was a challenging but rewardable experience. The hardest aspect was making sure small details of the lines were neat and positioned at the right places. Shading the arm was also incredibly difficult, as I had to use individual inequalities for the elbows and different sections of the arm to shade in the arm as much as I could. I loved the experimentation process and discovering how manipulating values would change the shapes of graphs. These skills will undoubtedly help me in future math classes. I improved my ability to visualize mathematical functions and the relationship between an equation and its visual image.

Independent Novel Study Speech



Crowds love a good outfit. Crowds love a good performer. And crowds love national pride. These were the things Emily Pauline Johnson embodied when she was an admired performer and poet of Canada. When Canada was a small child still strongly tied to its British roots, she was an artist of Canadian identity. Could a former colony establish its own literary culture shaped by its own history and geography?


This was the question Johnson sought to answer. Raised by a British mother and a Mohawk father, Johnson used her mixed heritage and dramatic flair to tell stories of Canadian identity post Confederation. The story of her life is told through Charlotte Gray’s biography, Flint and Feather. What Flint and Feather tells us is that Canadian identity is fluid, and we can use our voices to shape our stories.




Emily Pauline Johnson was born in the Six Nations Iroquiois Reserve in 1861. Her name Tekahionwake literally means (“double life”). As such, Johnson’s life was heavily influenced by her mixed-race identity as (Iroquois) and British. Johnson grew up learning to embrace both her Indigenous and European roots.


But having a multicultural life didn’t come easy. Pauline Johnson’s identity was as uncertain as the region she lived in, a vast and largely unexplored forest stretching from the Great Lakes northward. Tensions between Europeans and the Indigenous peoples was high. When Johnson was just a child, her own Indigenous father stumbled into the house with blood pouring out of his mouth. An attack perpetrated by two non-native bootleggers. This was only the start of a conflict that would escalate to great heights.


Things only grew worse when the Province of Canada transferred jurisdiction over Indian matters to its British North American colonies, expanding on the Gradual Civilization Act, absorbing native peoples into European-settler society. Pauline watched as places such as Brantford or London grew with economic wealth as her own indigenous hometown seemed to be left behind in the dust.


In the midst of this assimilation, Johnson used her gifts to illustrate the stories of indigenous peoples when these stories were rejected and looked over. In 1887, she wrote ode to brant, which was a testament to fading Indigenous culture within Canada. In her poem, she lamented “Indian graves and Indian memories will fade as night goes on”. But what makes her someone special, and someone we should care about, is the fact that her main message wasn’t just injustice towards indigenous peoples. What she wanted to show through her writing was that European immigrants and natives could achieve common brotherhood, much like her own individual identity. Pauline’s theme was Canadian patriotism, she pushed for reconciliation and collaboration under a nation with a myriad of identities and beliefs.


The pinnacle of Pauline’s success was when she was asked to write for Songs of the Great Dominion in 1889. The anthology was a collection of the Confederation poets, who were young poets in a young nation. The tone was fiercely Canadian. Perhaps her most famous poem was Cry of an Indian Wife, in which she writes about the Northwest Rebellion from an entirely different point of view. As French Canadians and Metis were outraged over Riel’s death, Pauline took on the role of a wife of an indigenous warrior who went to fight in the rebellion. She spoke about the great injustice to indigenous peoples but then goes on to speak from the perspective of a European wife. Her poem spoke of the divisiveness of the two dominant Canadian identities and managed to weave them into a forceful poetic performance that would impact audiences for years.



Pauline’s stories still stand true today. Canadian identity isn’t defined by a single image. Our country’s history comes from a myriad of indigenous and European culture. But regardless of what happens among us, we’re all made of flint and feather, a nation that can stand under our pride of being Canadian and a nation that embraces the mixed identity we share.


In the words of E Pauline Johnson :

“Few of us have the blood of kings, few are of courtly birth,

few are rogues of doubtful name and worth;

But we all have one credential that entitles us to brag–

That we were born in Canada beneath the British flag.”


Sir John A. Macdonald: The Canadian Patriot


In an age of progressing social views, Canadian values are shifting to adapt to the growing discourse around minority groups and historical figures. As information about John A Macdonald’s controversial legacy is resurfacing in the eyes of the general public, Canadians are scrutinizing the past of their first prime minister. While advocates of Macdonald emphasize his contributions to Canada’s formation as an individual nation, those who push for his removal believe that his discriminatory views towards indigenous and Chinese peoples warrant the erasure of his name from public establishments. Due to his success in building Canada as an independent nation, Macdonald’s political, social, and economic legacy should not be removed from the public sphere.

John A. Macdonald’s National Policy cemented the future of Canadian autonomy. The National Policy, in effect from 1879 to the Second World War, was a multifaceted strategy which included conservative economic policies, increased immigration, and the construction of the Canadian Pacific Railway. Macdonald believed that a successful union could only last if it was strengthened by the creation of a strong national economy (Bélanger). The economic program of the National Policy included high tariffs to shield Canadians from American competition and to “restore the confidence of Canadians in the development of their own country” (Brown). The policy reduced manufacturing costs for domestic producers while making Canadian goods comparatively cheaper to American goods in order to encourage domestic purchases (Bélanger). Furthermore, Macdonald’s championship of the Canadian Pacific Railway allowed for increased trade and development between Eastern Canada and British Columbia. This also grew the influx of immigrants, which contributed to the development of Canadian infrastructure and cities (Lavallé). Without the National Policy’s impact on the uncertain state of the Canadian economy, Macdonald’s goal of making certain that Canada did not become America would not be a reality (Gwyn). Macdonald’s vital work in forming an autonomous nation should be recognized by the public within the very country he campaigned for.

In contrast, supporters of the removal of Macdonald from the public sphere draw on his discriminatory policies against indigenous and Chinese peoples, citing his choice to use underpaid Chinese immigrants to build his railway and his advocacy for the assimilation of indigenous peoples into western society in his 1883 platform (Hamilton). This rhetoric entirely ignores the historical norms and values of the time and discredits Macdonald’s comparatively progressive social views. Without a powerful figure such as Macdonald to propose innovative policies such as women’s voting rights, the Northwest Mounted Police, and the support of French-speaking Canadians, non-discriminatory policies would not be possible. In 1885, Macdonald became the first national leader in the world to attempt to extend the vote to women (Gwyn).  Additionally, he was a supporter of French-Canadians and the impartiality of the law through the NWMP. He believed in “equal rights of every kind of language, or religion, of property and of person” (Gwyn). Macdonald’s ambitious political platform of social cohesion within Canada was the foundation for Canadian values that hold immense importance today.

John A Macdonald’s long-lasting legacy is widely controversial, with supporters focusing on his contributions to the growth of Canada as a country and opponents criticizing his derogatory beliefs and policies. When one considers Macdonald’s role in bolstering social unity and allowing the Canadian economy to become self-assured and independent, Macdonald’s construction of an entire autonomous nation far outweighs the controversial aspects of his life. As values and norms shift in a rapidly progressing society, it is crucial to continue publicizing the figures who pushed for the development of our values as a whole. Sir John A. Macdonald gave Canada the social, political, and economic strength to rally behind our viewpoints and become the nation we are proud of.

Works Cited

Brown, Robert Craig. “National Policy.” National Policy | The Canadian Encyclopedia, 2006, Accessed 5 May 2018.

Bélanger, Claude. “The National Policy and Canadian Federalism.” The National Policy and Canadian Federalism – Studies on the Canadian Constitution and Canadian Federalism – Quebec History, 2009, Accessed 7 May 2018.

Gwyn, Robert J. “Canada’s Father Figure.” Canada’s Father Figure – Canada’s History, 6 Jan. 2016, Accessed 6 May 2019.

Hamilton, Graeme. “’A Key Player in Indigenous Cultural Genocide:’ Historians Erase Sir John A. Macdonald’s Name from Book Prize.” National Post, 29 May 2018, Accessed 5 May 2019.

Lavallé, Omar. “Canadian Pacific Railway.” The Canadian Encyclopedia, 24 Jan. 2018, Accessed 5 May 2019.

Canadian Biography Check-in: Flint and Feather by Charlotte Gray

“Indian graves and Indian memories will fade as night goes on.

Forgive the wrongs my children did to you,

And we, the redskins, will forgive you too.”


Canadian Identity:

E Pauline Johnson’s “Ode to Brant” illustrates the shift in Canada’s policies towards the assimilation of indigenous culture. Originally dedicated to the death of her Mohawk grandfather, Johnson’s ode adopts a darker tone. This line is a reflection of the growing cultural tension within Canada at the time and the internal tension that existed within Pauline’s mixed upbringing. The Confederation of Canada brought economic and industrial growth that excluded the Six Nations Reserve and Iroquois people. In 1857, the Province of Canada passed the Gradual Civilization Act, which aimed to assimilate native peoples into European society and culture. Canadian identity at the time was strongly loyalist and tied to British identity. Native peoples had to demonstrate their “morality” and loyalty towards British ideals. A series of Indian Acts followed, aiming to speed up settlement within Canada.

Although her work is a direct critique of the patronizing views of the time, her poetry is never particularly pessimistic. Rather, audiences revered her for her ability to strengthen Canadian identity through discussing both her European and indigenous heritage. Pauline pushed for collaboration and reconciliation between natives and European immigrants. Her personal heritage is a microcosm of the patriotism she pushed for; her mother and father created a loving family life in which both European and indigenous culture were equally celebrated.

Nowadays, Canadian culture is moving towards reconciliation. Pauline reflects Canadian values of reconciliation, collaboration, and coexistence with all cultures rather than dramatic power dynamics. Her strength of character exemplifies Canadian honesty and perseverance.

She made a vital discovery: “crowds love uplifting patriotism” (216).

Personal Interest:

I was intrigued by the abrupt and powerful nature of Pauline’s writing.  Her poetry is more renowned for its performance than its written content. With a European mother and Mohawk father, Pauline’s tenacity to showcase her indigenous culture really inspired me. I also like to use creative means to express my own identity and to address issues that are important to me. This quote illustrates a style of writing that is clear, concrete, and poignant. My personal writing goal is to be able to portray whole stories with single lines.

“How could a Canadian poet steeped in British Romantic poetry, in whicn nature is used as a metaphor for both God and the human mind, reconcile this tradition with the vast, untamed landscape of the Great Dominion of the North? Could a former colony establish its own literary culture shaped by its own history and geography?”

Canadian Identity:

In the wake of Confederation, a new era of Canadian literature emerged. Dubbed the “Confederation Poets”, a small group of rising poets were featured in William Lighthall’s anthology, Songs of the Great Dominion. They argued about the challenges facing Canadian expression and cultural identity. Pauline and other notable artists wrote about the role of Canada as a newborn nation which still looked to Britain for its culture. The poets were united by the idea that Canada should have its own unique culture. This quote highlights the struggles and uncertainties of a new nation. Artists tried to tackle an ambiguous cultural identity through Canadian verse and a combination of literature and politics that radiated nationalism. Often times, when we evaluate national identity, we underestimate the impact of poetry and the arts. Historical literature reflects the values and norms of the period it was written in. Writers such as Pauline are the “scribes” of their time, capturing the zeitgeist of Canadian history through powerful words.

Canada’s culture is still debated today. While some argue that a mosaic of cultures defines Canada’s national identity, some also argue that Canada still lacks a clear direction of values or is too dependent on larger powers. Canadians value diversity and a varied population, but is this diluting our own national strength?

Personal Interest:

This passage is especially complex and significant to Pauline’s narrative. I especially liked its use of a metaphor to represent Canadian geography and its relationship with cultural identity. When we dissect the quote, its message is clear and relatable. The shift from dependency to autonomy relates to many aspects of human life. When we first become adults, we must learn to strengthen our self-identity by establishing our own morals and ideas. As a new nation, Canada struggled to wean itself away from Britain. This quote uses literary devices to make readers feel sympathy towards a nation, and for the artists who tried to capture a new culture still strongly tied to its traditional views.

“The Indian girl we meet in cold type,” Pauline pointed out, “is rarely distressed by having to belong to any tribe, or to reflect any tribal characteristics.”

Canadian Identity:

Pauline is directly commenting on the portrayal of indigenous women within literature. With increasing discriminatory policies and further divide between Europeans and native peoples, very few writers explored the character and origins of indigenous women. Authors such as Mercer Adam portrayed indigenous women as wild, uncivilized, and rife with derogatory clichés. They never had education, character depth, or extensive background stories. Indigenous women in books were the embodiment of stereotypes and images that were written by people who knew absolutely nothing about indigenous culture. Pauline used her platform and status as a performer to educate the public and critique the works of other literary pieces of the time.

Canada is regarded as a progressive country that uses its platforms to interfere with widespread stereotypes and miseducation. Pauline reflects modern Canadian values that place an emphasis on extensive representation of smaller groups and even our own media alongside American media.

Personal Interest:

In the realm of indigenous rights and discussions surrounding the rights of minority groups, media representation is crucial to shaping the public perception of groups. Pauline’s quote really resonates with me because it is applicable to modern societal issues and optics. Many stereotypes and biases are rooted in exposure to media that is heavily exaggerated or purposely meant to mock or shame certain groups. I admire Pauline’s ability to directly point out ignorances and prejudices in literature in order to change harmful narratives. In our day to day lives, it’s important to be analytical of the art we see in order to promote unbiased media and literary representation.

 “If she could switch smoothly from Indian to European dress, couldn’t the rest of Canada’s native peoples?

Canadian Identity:

In order to enhance her performances, Pauline changed into costumes that were both European and indigenous. The author of the biography effectively examines a different viewpoint and points out a flaw in Pauline’s performance. Given the diminishing power of indigenous peoples, Pauline’s performances could have further pushed the sentiment that Canada’s natives could easily adapt to European culture. In fact, her adoption of the native character may have been a ploy to advance her own career. In the pursuit of a nationalistic image that appealed to the Canadian masses, Pauline may have sacrificed her own integrity towards supporting indigenous representation and rights.

Canada prides itself on being viewed as an accepting nation. Politicians talk about our progressive ideals and accepting policies, but Canadian identity in the world today often ignores past atrocities committed by the Canadian government itself. While Canada has a positive reputation, Canada’s past is not entirely positive. The way we portray ourselves today may not be the most honest or effective way to speak about past mistakes.

Personal Interest:

I always admire authors who aren’t afraid to critique figures who are widely regarded as mainly good people. This quote took a differing viewpoint that interested me. Charlotte Gray effectively questions the legitimacy of Pauline’s performances and allows readers to examine multiple perspectives and possible explanations behind Pauline’s intentions. In activism, while people may begin with good intentions, their messages can distort into harmful rhetoric or performances that may do more harm than good. It’s important to consider the implicit effects of all our actions and the things we do to promote a certain cause.

“She came from the wealthiest, most Europeanized Indian reserve in Canada. She was playing with her Indian heritage; her own identity was firmly rooted in the British traditions passed on by her mother.”

Canadian Identity:

Charlotte Gray questions Pauline’s character and reminds us of her privileged upbringing. Within Canada, disparities also existed within indigenous groups. Many native peoples who were proficient in English, had connections with Europeans, and lived in affluent areas held significant advantages over less fortunate indigenous individuals. Pauline was fortunate enough to be the daughter of a highly esteemed Mohawk who worked as an interpreter and political liaison for the Iroquois council and British leaders. European influence was present everywhere. Pauline was around European people and the constant presence of European education, such as reserve schools that actively sought to teach European ideals, language, and religion. Much of her own individual identity was formed by her British mother, and this is also true for Canada as a whole.

Canada’s external image reflects multiculturalism and considerate indigenous influence, but Canada has a history of suppressing indigenous culture. Pauline, who was only half-indigenous, had the opportunity and privilege to express her ideas. Pauline possibly didn’t even understand the full extent of the struggles unfortunate native peoples had to face. Flint and Feather reminds audiences of the European influence that infiltrates the promotion of indigenous culture and rights as a whole.

Personal Interest:

While I was reading this book, I was waiting for the author to mention Pauline’s privilege. Not only was she quite wealthy, but she was also half British and mainly raised with British values and beliefs. I admire Gray’s decision to actively point out the limitations of Pauline’s activism and writing. I strongly believe it’s important to point out disparities that exist within disadvantaged groups. WIth a counter perspective, I’m eager to learn more about Pauline and decide if the benefits of her work outweigh the ingenuity of some of her messaging.


Seeking mass acceptance often impacts the integrity of your intentions.

Pauline’s work is famed for its nationalism. It aims to create art that strengthens and unites Canadians, allowing Canada to move away from being a smaller nation dependent on British ideals. On the other hand, many could argue that Pauline’s knack for attention and performance led her astray from her original intentions of promoting indigenous welfare. When individuals start to seek approval from the masses, their messaging and intentions may appear clouded or questionable. This theme is unbiased, universal, and examines E Pauline Johnson from multiple lenses.







DoL – Is Canada a “post-national” state?

Canada’s myriad of cultural, social, and economic differences within its physical borders poses questions of ambiguity about Canadian identity. Canada is a nation with national values that result in economic and social success. Canadian identity shares the values of “openness, respect, compassion, willingness to work hard, to be there for each other, [and] to search for equality and justice”(Todd, 2016). Various ethnic groups, refugees, and immigrants are able to coexist in Canada precisely because of our healthy nationalism and shared values of Canadian identity. Nationalism is defined as support for a nation’s own interests. Nationalism “encourages diverse people to cooperate”(Todd, 2016). A stable sense of national identity encourages citizens to accept policies and interests for the greater good, allowing smaller groups within a country to collaborate and accept their differences for a bigger purpose or identity. Even if Canada was a “post-national” state,  it would still “[fall] back on the established mechanisms of state governance and control”(Foran, 2017). In order for governance and control to be effective without creating political unrest,  “a sense of mutual trust and appreciation for good government” is crucial to establishing an egalitarian nation with stable discourse (Todd, 2016). In countries that suffer from racial tension or civil conflicts, there is a profound lack of national identity and stability. Canada is the epitome of a country that uses its widespread values in order to create a system that maximizes our ability to accept various groups and do what is best for our country as a whole.

Romeo and Juliet Act II: Critical Response

Question 1

The turbulence of infatuation characterizes the relationships of many young people in their first encounter with love. In William Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliet”, two star-crossed lovers from rival families fall madly in love and decided to get married, which results in a tragedy. Romeo and Juliet’s impulsive actions and blind decisions represent “puppy love” or “infatuation”. When Romeo first sees Juliet, he proclaims that “[he] ne’er saw true beauty till [that] night”(1.5.53). Despite only seeing her for a few moments, he completely discards all his past experiences with “love” and declares true love. Romeo’s declaration is based on a fleeting judgement of physical attraction; he has neither prior knowledge of Juliet’s personality nor deep affection. While love is sustained, infatuation is a short-lived moment of intense attraction. Romeo’s impulsive passion further represents his turbulent and idealistic character, which is the catalyst of many events throughout the novel. Romeo and Juliet’s love is “too rash, too unadvised, too sudden, [and] too like the lightning”(2.2.118-119). Juliet, the more reasonable lover of the two, compares their relationship to lightning. Lightning is fast, short-lived, and even destructive. It flashes, and may appear strong and passionate, but disappears in an instant. This quote illustrates how their relationship is doomed after their initial meeting, which Shakespeare continually emphasizes throughout the play.

Question 2

Modern readers often perceive the relationship between Romeo and Juliet as childish, outlandish, or simply bizarre, considering their young age. Jindra Kulich argues that throughout history, people at fourteen years of age were considered to be adults and bore enough responsibilities to be mature in the face of real-life adversity. Kulich believes that Romeo and Juliet should not be denoted as children. While Kulich presents an interesting point, the reason why childhood has been extended to the late teen years is psychological and scientifically proven reasons. The debate boils down to a comparison between environmental events that spur maturity and our modern day’s psychological or physiological outlook on various categorizations. The University of Rochester argues that the teen brain doesn’t fully develop until 25, meaning that teenagers and people of a young age are not adequately equipped with the capability to make decisions at their full potential. However, Jindra Kulich’s claims about the historical age of majority are also mainly true. According to the Law Reform Commission, definitions of adulthood were largely reliant on real-life responsibilities and tasks. Children in past times were responsible for more labour and families also depended heavily on their children. Additionally, the age of majority was often decided through an evaluation of sexual maturity, which was around ages 12-14 in Elizabethan times. Jindra Kulich’s arguments do have basic historical evidence, but Kulich provides no link or explanation as to why an environmental and employability evaluation is better than a psychological definition. Therefore, while Jindra Kulich’s argument uses historical evidence and norms, there is no reason to believe her definition of childhood holds any weight over ours today. In order for her argument to be fully effective, Kulich needs to establish why the historical perspective is better than our scientific method.

Works Cited

Haines, Michael R. “Long Term Marriage Partners in the United States from the Colonial to the Present.” National Bureau of Economic Research, Mar. 1996.

“How Do They Decide the Age When You Become an Adult?” Today I Found Out, 10 Aug. 2016,

Munroe, Susan. “What Does Age of Majority Mean in Canada?” Thoughtco., Dotdash, 3 Sept. 2018,

Robertson, Stephen, and University of Sydney. “Children and Youth in History.” Women in World History: PRIMARY SOURCES,

Shelat, Amit. “Understanding the Teen Brain .” Ice Packs vs. Warm Compresses For Pain – Health Encyclopedia – University of Rochester Medical Center, University of Rochester,


Zip Final Post

What is your inquiry question? What initially drew you to this question? Did your question stay the same, or did it change over time? Why?

My inquiry question is “what makes an effective blog post?” Initially, I was drawn to this question because I already had my own personal blog, but wanted to polish it. I didn’t have any sense of how to blog or organize a website and make posts that were enjoyable to read. I loved looking at well-established blogs that were visually appealing and well written.

My question stayed the same, but I received lots of answers I didn’t expect. The visual organization of your site has a large impact on your audience. Blog posts don’t have to abide by a particular set of rules. In fact, the more concise and casual your writing is, the easier it is for you to secure your audience throughout your entire post. It’s crucial to develop and strengthen your unique voice while showcasing your personality. Therefore, with thousands of blogs out there, yours has to be distinct.

Over time, I drifted further and further away from getting too engrossed in online research. Eventually, I spent most of my time crafting my own posts and customizing my blog.

What skills have you expanded on / learned during the inquiry process? How are these skills applicable to your success as a student?

I’ve strengthened my organization skills, both in writing and in practice. I can categorize my ideas by overarching topics and physically organize spaces to look presentable. Through learning how to write in an accessible, transparent manner, I can improve my writing and verbal communication skills. I’ve practiced how to tailor my work towards specific demographics, which can help me present towards different audiences. I have a basic understanding of effective marketing skills, time management (you have to post regularly!) and how visual aid can help garner more attention.

Most importantly, I’ve learned how to genuinely express my ideas in a comprehensible way. Sometimes I can get too ahead of myself and use convoluted language. After Zip, I’ll continue to work on being as clear and impactful as possible in all my school endeavours.

What did you learn about / what is your answer to this inquiry question? Remember to be specific and provide direct evidence from your research.

There is obviously not a single clear cut answer. However, most sites I encountered mentioned the same main tips:

  • Concision. Don’t lose the attention of your audience. Make your writing accessible to them.
  • Introductions are VERY important in blogging and journalism! You have a few seconds to capture and SECURE your reader’s attention. Don’t start off weak or boring. Think about how many times you’ve clicked off articles in your life.
  • Organize your writing into short sections
  • Make an effort to form a relationship with your reader
  • Use colours, fonts, and appearance to fit the theme or mood of your site
  • Don’t overload with statistics or long preambles
  • Use attractive or eye-catching images/photography
  • Write based on your demographic.
    • If it’s a casual blog, use casual language
    • Business/marketing blog: real-life tips, more formal language
  • Recognize and adapt a certain niche! Make your blog tailored to one thing (e.g. travel, fashion, marketing, etc.)
  • Use call to actions at the end

In what ways does your final learning artifact demonstrate your learning/answer to your inquiry question? How does it connect to your chosen curricular competencies? Consider listing your competencies and including images, links, or excerpts from your work to demonstrate this.

My final learning artifact will be my blog. It synthesizes my research, experiences, and skills into one cohesive piece. Through developing my virtual persona, I transform ideas and information into original texts. In turn, these original texts create connections between myself and my audience. I incorporate significant cultural information and relevance into my writing. Before writing every post, I use writing and design processes to create structured blog posts with adequate visual aid.

Some excerpts:

China has the largest population in the world, with over 1.3 billion people.

And you may know China for its urban cities. Beijing and Shanghai offer a view into the pace of Chinese life – fast, gruelling, and constantly developing.

Yet China presents a diverse range of land: some urban, some rural, some remote, and some widely known. Among China’s remote regions is the Inner Mongolia region, lush with grass plains, small huts, and cicadas that sing well into the night. Inner Mongolia offers a horizon of endless grass and authentic villages. In this post, I’ll be encapsulating the wonder of Inner Mongolia in my experiences and images for you to enjoy.

This street captures the architecture of London. The streets of London are vastly different from Vancouver’s dominantly modern architecture. London’s streets utilize old buildings and architecture for modern purposes – a perfect blend of progress and authenticity to its roots. The streets are narrow and lined with cobblestone.  Something else to point out is that people drive on the left side of the road, and the driver’s side of the car is on the right. I absolutely love the old feel of London and looking at the architecture. It’s like a walk through history and every building has its own story.

What resources did you find useful during your inquiry and why were they useful? (Cite at least four resources you consulted, with links, and write a brief 50-100 response as to was important to your learning).

Leist, Rachel. “How to Write a Blog Post: A Step-by-Step Guide [+ Free Blog Post Templates].” HubSpot Blog, HubSpot,

This website outlines the basic features of a blog post while illustrating a simple, step by step process. It includes all the basic concepts and tips of blogging, including both thematic and written aspects. I learned how to create working titles and organize content. This site was the first I consulted during this project and introduced me to the most important and crucial aspects of a blog. I followed its procedure when I wrote all my blog posts.

Rades, Alicia. “6 Steps To Writing Captivating Blog Post Intros Every Time.” Blogging Wizard, 31 July 2018,

This resource specifically focuses on the first and foremost component of the blog post: the introduction. It mentions the use of emotions, pronouns, interesting facts/thoughts, anecdotes, description and appeal to problems/problem-solving. I was able to research more in-depth on specific blog sections and use special tips for capturing an audience. Since my blog was a travel blog, I mainly employed the use of emotions, facts, and descriptions rather than problem-solving.

“5 Ways To End A Blog Post.” Content Experience Hub | Uberflip,

This site talks about different methods authors use to write effective conclusions. I used its tips when writing all the endings of my blog posts. I explicitly labelled my conclusions as “conclusion”, kept them concise, and engaged with my audience at the end.

“Simple Tips to Make Your Blog Photography More Pinterest-Worthy.” Feast Design Co., 1 Apr. 2018,

This resource focuses on the visual aspects of a blog, including photography and composition tips. I learned that photos can help break up long sections of text, making your articles more reader-friendly and pleasing to look at.

What new questions do you have about your inquiry? What motivates you or excites you about these questions?

I’m eager to learn how writing styles differ among different genres of blogs – whether it’s fashion, makeup, beauty, politics, science, or marketing. I’m motivated to experiment with making different types of blogs. My next step is to hopefully create a fashion blog. There’s a whole different menu of tips and tricks for various types of blogs, as they all cater to different audiences.

Zip 3 DoL

Take a moment to reflect on your inquiry plan. Do you need to make any revisions to your original plan? If so, why?

After several blocks of in-class time, I’ve realized that blogging is less research-intensive than I thought. The most effective way to begin writing is to experiment and just write. Getting too caught up in tips from other bloggers can hinder creativity. From January 8th, I’ve used literally all my in-class time to write my blog posts. I don’t need to dedicate as many blocks to research. The material of all the websites I’ve encountered is the same, and writing tips are only applicable when I try them. I’ve found writing incredibly more rewarding than researching minuscule details/mechanics. Especially in blogging, it’s important that you find your “voice” and write in a casual, accessible way.

I’m currently working on my Inner Mongolia post, so I’m well ahead of schedule. I’ve completed and edited my London post. For the next few days leading up to the presentation day, I’m going into full writer mode. I’ve completely strayed away from online research, and am now drafting and writing on my own. While I am trying to write more naturally, I am still using general blogging tips from my first day of ZIP. I’m trying to uphold my original blog “aesthetic”, catering towards a specific demographic. I am continually employing the use of interesting hooks, short sections, and empathy towards my audience.

The schedule changes work in my favour. I’m excited to continue writing  – without spending too much time on online research. My ultimate end goal is to create an authentic, carefully crafted blog that synthesizes both my own style and the tips of others.

Zip 2 – January 9th and 10th

Record a journal entry of how you used one of our in-class focus blocks What did you accomplish during this time? What did you struggle with? What might be your next step in your nex focus block? Set a goal.

January 9th

Firstly, I evaluated my original notes and customized my website to the desired theme.

screen-shot-2019-01-09-at-11-22-50-amSecondly, I looked into specifically adding an about page and a contact me page. I personalized my colours and images while choosing a minimalistic format. For the about me page, I found that most websites recommended keeping it short, outlining my personal story in the subject area, and (if possible) demonstrating my credibility and expertise.






I struggled with familiarizing myself with the capabilities of WordPress. Initially, adding an about page and contact page were difficult. Since I only have the free version, I don’t have access to a lot of features or other customization options.

My next step would be to finish editing my London post using the new tools and tips I have researched. I want to make it more concise and add several attention grabbers or images.

January 10th

Today I finished editing my London blog post. I added several images of my own and split the entire blog into short, concise sections. A writing issue I struggle with is writing long sentences or paragraphs, which can obfuscate the clarity and meaning of my writing. I found it easy to write about each of the attractions, but writing an introduction and conclusion was difficult, considering they leave the greatest impression on my audience in a blog post.




My goal for the next work blog is to begin writing my Inner Mongolia and Korea posts using the same tips I’ve learned about. I also want to write about the cultural aspects of those places and delve deeper into the locals of those places.