Light and Darkness

“Light and darkness are easy to identify in the world.”

I disagree with the statement ‘Light and darkness are easy to identify in the world’ because light and darkness are ever changing relative to each other. For example, lets say that the world is a dark room. After a while in that room, your eyes will adjust and you may think it is bright. But if there was a lamp in the room, the contrast will act as a point of reference and the rest of the room will seem darker than if there was no light. Additionally, there many ways people can interpret the definition of light and darkness. Identifying what is light and dark in the world is a simple task until you factor in more than one perspective. In conclusion, dark things in the world will only be as dark as we make of them.

3 Wise Nugs – Interview Results

When choosing a career, we may get distracted by money and forget about family or passion.


 

When we want something, we often don’t know all about it. So it may be helpful to research and learn more about it before we commit.


 

We often want to he the best as soon as we start, but we need to accept we have lots to learn before we can start to improve.

 

Harrison Bergeron

Harrison Bergeron

 

Kurt Vonnegut’s Harrison Bergeron is best appreciated through the written text, rather than its film adaptation, because it leaves a greater impact on the readers. Both mediums of the story tell the same story of a world in which everybody is equal and gifted individuals are handicapped by the government and the Handicapper General, or HG. However, the written version is much more exaggerated and unrealistic, such as when we discover that Harrison is a 7ft 14-year-old, which leaves a sort of eerie feeling upon the story’s completion. This unrealistic presentation of the fictional word amplifies certain details using writing techniques, such as when “Diana Moon Glampers, the Handicapper General, came in to the studio with a double barreled ten-gauge shotgun” and shoots both Harrison and the ballerina in two shots (5). This all happens in two sentences, whereas the dancing section had almost 10 times the amount. This makes use of the expanded moment technique and shows the HG’s actions as very quick, forceful, and powerful, because it happened so fast and it was all accomplished by one person; whereas in the film, the HG is joined by a bunch of special forces units and takes a long time to get into the studio. This removes the scare of one person holding all the power. The written book was also able to give us the story from George and Hazel’s perspective. George explains the sounds on the mental disabler and Hazel explains the way Harrison and the ballerina jump around like deer on the moon; rather than on the film, the same sounds are used for the mental disabler, nothing is done to show what George thinks about the situation on the television, or how special Harrison is except for how loud he can yell, stomp, and break wood and chains. Sure, it’s impressive, but not like the sky jumping, padlock crushing, door breaking 14-year-old we read in the short story. The exaggeration here shows that, again, Diana Moon Glampers can end this boy’s life instantly without hesitation. This is scary and gets us thinking about people we put into power. But in the film, she doesn’t get in the studio alone, time slows down as she shoots, and she looks like she regrets doing it when seen on the television. This doesn’t give us the same effect as the reading where we contemplate how scary and powerful one with absolute power can become. In conclusion, the written version of Kurt Vonnegut’s Harrison Bergeron is better than the film adaptation because it tells a more exaggerated story which leaves a scary message.

Introductions – Jun-fan “Bruce” Lee


 

Absorb what is useful, discard what is useless, and add what is specifically yours.

Bruce Lee


 

Lee Jun-fan, more commonly known as Bruce Lee, was an American / Hong Kong philosopher, director, actor, martial artist, martial art instructor, founder of martial art Jeet Kune Do, and fighter. Lee was one of the first to popularize the eastern Chinese culture and put martial arts on a global stage using the influence of his films. Many, to this day, still regard Lee as one of the best fighters to ever have lived and he has become a figurehead for martial arts. I am specifically drawn to Bruce Lee because of these achievements and his philosophy of life. I chose Lee over others in the same field of study because nobody was able to leave a mark quite like him. Ask anyone, there’s a good chance they will know who he was and what he did 50 years ago and maybe even another 50 from today. I believe that he is worth researching and sharing because of the story his life tells. As a young boy being raised in Hong Kong, Lee got mixed up in a few street fights. Wanting to fight back and stand for himself, he started learning Wing Chun from Ip Man (or Yip Man), a master Wing Chun teacher. Even then, other students avoided Lee because of his mixed ancestry. But despite his start, Lee rose up and became a person renowned for his martial abilities and skills. I believe this story delivers a message of how anyone can become the best at what they do, but only a few works towards their potential. Although the culture of where we were raised may be considered as similar, there are many differences that I must overcome to understand Bruce Lee. For example, Lee was a child actor, and he was raised in a similar culture, not the same. But setting these differences aside for the speech will be easier if the research is done thoroughly and I put a little bit more effort or I could try to avoid things that are too different. Throughout eminent, I would like to learn about Lee’s philosophy of life and martial arts and “absorb what is useful, discard what is useless, and add what is specifically [mine]”.

For the next step in eminent, I aim to finish all my research by the end of this month. Learning about Lee’s achievements, life, and personality with depth so I can begin to work on my speech and learning center by the start of November.

1984 by George Orwell – Second Response

Summary (50 words):

The second third of George Orwell’s 1984 starts with Winston secretly receiving a message from a young woman from the fictions department. Winston falls in love with this girl and attempts to learn more without alerting anybody, especially the seemingly all-seeing telescreens. After they get together, they find the brotherhood.

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Winston impressed me with his surreptitious attitude. He wants to get in touch with the girl from the fictions department and fears that she will change her mind about her love. After a week, Winston gets close to contacting her, but must give up when a young man he barely knows invites him to a seat. Winston knows that “it was not safe to refuse” so he accepts without much of a choice (126). Although he wants to get to her as soon as he can, Winston makes sure not to look suspicious. Winston also mentions he should “not [be] too near the telescreens” when contacting the girl (125). Winston is in an external conflict against the suppressive nature of his society and makes sure to take everything into account. This reveals that Winston is a very strong planner and has a very careful eye. Winston’s actions are believable in this scene because he took similar risks in the past – like the impulsive purchases of the book and stone. Winston feels isolated in this society; when the girl tells him she loves him, Winston feels a burning curiosity within him that tells him to seek for more information. This is satisfying because I am curious, too. The scene reminded me of elementary school, stealthily sending messages to a friend, trying not to get caught. I would likely take the same actions as Winston.

The Single Story – Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie


 

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


 

Single stories are, and will stay, everywhere. It is intimidating to consider attempting to reject something that seems so intrinsic to a society brimming with individuals who possess vastly different experiences and views. But just as when Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie says “I must quickly add that I too am just as guilty in the question of the single story” we are all subject to the single story and must all work to avoid it. We can begin rejecting the effects of the single story by acknowledging and accepting that we do not know everything. Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie says that “They (the single stories) make one story become the only story”; once we accept that we don’t know everything – even when we think we do – and communicate with that goal in mind, we will have an easier time walking away from the single story stereotype. However, this is a hard task. Nobody is perfect and that is why the single story still exists. But when we acknowledge that we are all under some influence of the single story then we will be on our way to removing it from our lives.

1984 by George Orwell – First Response

1984 by George Orwell

Summary (50 words):

The first third of George Orwell’s 1984 introduces us to Winston Smith and his thoughts living in the oppressive government under the rule of Big Brother and the Party. Winston initially holds the ideals of the party; however, throughout the story, Winston comes to realize that something is not right.

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Winston really impressed me when he steps into the prole’s pub to ask the old man about his experiences in the past. He did this although he could get caught by the patrols and sent to the labour camps, or worse, vaporized. This scene reveals that Winston is going through an internal conflict where he feels so trapped within his own thoughts that he will rather risk the quality of his life to seek the truth and connect with another genuine person, rather than to stay isolated in his own mind. Throughout the scene, Winston fears getting caught; he fears that the Party will find out about his actions, thoughts, and intentions. But he still wants to know about the past, he still wants to ask the old man to “tell me (Winston) about your life when you were a boy. What was it like in those days? Were things better than they are now. or were they worse?” (99). But his wants outweigh the risks and Winston “pushed open the door, and a hideous cheesy smell of sour beer hit him in the face” (99). At first glance, this seemingly impulsive and rash decision seems unrealistic. Who would do such a thing in that situation? But Winston has been showing these signs from the beginning of the book. Earlier in the story, Winston says that he “[…] had been stricken immediately by an overwhelming desire to possess it (the diary)” and that’s why he bought the book. This small one-time thing, however, has throughout the story developed into this risky curiosity which leads Winston to talk to the proles and visit the shop – where he found the book – again. I feel like this is a very satisfying development for Winston’s character because his actions and thoughts feel real and unaltered. I feel like these conflicts and conversations he has with himself make him appear to us like a real human. His thoughts feel genuine, like any of us readers could’ve had those thoughts if we were in Winston’s position. In a way, we unconsciously emulate his feelings and can feel empathetic when he has these thoughts but can’t share them. We’ve all had moments where we had a thought or feeling that we couldn’t explain to somebody, nobody could understand, or we just couldn’t share because for different reasons. In that way, we do emulate Winston, sometimes. I, personally, can relate to this feeling. I did something I wasn’t supposed to and felt like I couldn’t tell anyone. However, I did eventually confess and that’s why I believe I would act the same way that Winston did and seek the truth of the past.

Emil

“Before assuming, try asking”

In life, we must not judge or assume things of others. Assuming can lead to disrespect and unfounded frustration towards other people. In Stuart McLean’s short story Emil, Emil appears in front of Dave’s store and Dave irately asks for the homeless man to leave. Morley later tells Dave that “You (Dave) should introduce yourself (himself)” before asking Emil to leave (111). And sure enough, when Dave introduces himself and asks kindly, Emil gets up and leaves the front of Dave’s store. In this situation, Dave didn’t show respect and looked down on Emil even though he knew nothing about him. Later, Dave even comes to the realization that Emil is better than him in some regards when he says that “it bothered him that Emil could keep track of the scrap of paper, and he couldn’t keep track of the books” (114). These quotes show that Dave shouldn’t’ve judged Emil right away because once he got to know him, he discovered that Emil was a person just like himself and was better than him in some respects. On the other side of the story, Morley treats Emil with respect and gives him the benefit of the doubt even when others would not do so in similar situations. For example, when Morley says, “Is that for your garden, Emil?” she doesn’t assume she knows what Emil is up to and asks what he is doing (115). Where somebody like Dave would just assume Emil was up to no good, Morley asks Emil what he is doing and discovers that he had no ill intent. In conclusion, in Stuart McLean’s Emil, the stark contrast between how Dave and Morley treat Emil reveal that we should hold our assumptions until we know more about the situation, even if we think we know enough.

STAR WARS: A NEW HOPE

The social lens is the most powerful lens for viewing George Lucas’ Star Wars: A New Hope because it reveals the intrinsic desire humans have for power and control. During the extent of the film, we see many examples that corroborate this statement. One thing that you may or may not notice is that most of the powerful characters in this film are human or human-like, either psychically or emotionally. To an extent, the more ‘human’ a character is, the higher they would be on the social hierarchy. We see this taking action right as the film starts; The four-legged reptilian creatures the Storm troopers ride at Tatooine or the fury Banthas the sand-people ride is both non-sentient beings that have been domesticated by humans or human-like species. Additionally, we do not see any non-human-like alien in a position of great power during the movie, with Jabba the Hutt being the only exception. Another thing that comes to notice with the social lens is that the dominant entity that reigns over the galaxy is run purely by humans. The Galactic Empires screen time has been dedicated to its very human leaders and its equally human soldiers. Here we see humanity at the top of the tower again. The entire system and military of the Empire consists of humans. Finally, the entire story is about the struggle of two human parties. Both the Empire and the Rebellion are shown to be made up of human members who fight for control. The humans, who are already at the top of the hierarchy, even fight between each other to elevate their parties’ control. These three points show that humans have a yearning for relevance and/or importance because they make us, the viewers, feel important and part of something bigger. From this I can assume that George Lucas’ film Star Wars: A New Hope was made with an intent to entertain and connect with us, the viewers. Empowering humans in the movie allows us to make better connections with the characters. Imagine if Luke was a cow, it wouldn’t be the same. Simply put, we as a species, is narcissistic. When authors like George Lucas writes these stories, they assume the intelligent life can only come int the form of species that look like, or are, us. From this, I can conclude, films and stories often depict humans or human-like actors and empower them to make the observer feel important and powerful.

Yoonha Lee 2018-06-18 19:05:28

I am an unnamed delegate from Newfoundland to speak upon the topic of military and defense. Regarding the American Civil War and the idea of manifest destiny arising from the South, the citizens of Newfoundland do not hold much concern. This is mostly due to Newfoundland being very isolated and protected by the expanse of the ocean, as the only mode of transportation is by boat. Additionally, we are under the protection of the British Navy. Another small factor is that Canada lies directly in between Newfoundland and the United States, acting as a sort of shield. On another note, later on during the Cold War, US relationships seemed more promising than Canadian relationships when speaking of military support. On the topic of Fenian Raids, we, again, are not heavily influenced due to the points mentioned earlier. However, some of our population do derive from Irish descent and are looking for a method to show their loyalty to our colony by supporting confederation. Confederating will also mean that we would no longer need the aid of the British Navy to defend our lands. Additionally, being defended by a united army under the name of Canada would make it more intimidating for other countries to consider attacking.