Sunday, May 2, 2010

The end of the year is nearing us! Turned in my last essay and I have to admit it felt pretty good. I have enjoyed learning about the Romantic, Victorian, and Modern era's of literature. This was the first time I have created a blog and decided that I am going to continue. Making a web page for our class was a journey, but it all came together nicely. I hope everyone's semester went well and you too enjoyed this class along with me. Toodles :)

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Just got done this weekend with the team website. It was difficult at first to understand exactly how to use Tripod (web hosting site), but after awhile I got the hang of it. I would have liked to use the Google version to build a site.

Out of the readings that we did for Lesson 6 I enjoyed William Butler Yeats "When You are Old". It is a beautiful poem about enduring love. The approach the poet takes is unusual. Rather than telling the woman of his love, he presents her with an image of herself as a graceful old woman reflecting on her life and loves. The poet imagines the old woman as she sits by the fire. As she realizes she was loved by many men, one man in particular (the poet) loved her the most. It is also about old age and memory. Notice though, that the title of the poem is "When You are Old" and not "Now That You are Old". The poet wants the woman to imagine how incomplete her life will be without him. By imagining this he wants her to avoid that lonely future and return his love now, while they are both still young and have their lives ahead of them.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Essay two- My Last Duchess

So for my second essay I had no idea what I wanted to write about. The Victorian period is such an important time for literature, a lot of our important writers and pieces of work were among this time also. I decided to do an arugmentative view on "My Last Duchess" by Robert Browning. Since there was a lot of discussion with this poem on our boards I thought this would be an interesting poem to write about. I discussed the different characteristics The Duke possessed, and my view on how the Duchess was killed. I am enjoying writing these papers because it gives me a chance to fully discuss my views rather than a brief overview on our discussion boards.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

How to Read a Poem
Since we have been reading poetry in class, I thought it would be handy to pass along some information on how to read a poem. I received this article in my Literary Criticism class and so far it has helped me better understand poetry. Hope this helps with those that are having trouble.

  • Look at the poem's title: What might this poem be about?
  • Read the poem straight through without stopping to analyze it. This will help you get a sense of how it sounds, how it works, what it might be about.
  • Start with what you know: If the poem is difficult, distinguish between what you do and do not understand. Underline the parts you do not immediately understand.
  • Check for understanding: Write a quick "first impression" of the poem by answering questions, "What do you notice about this poem so far?" and "What is this poem about?"
  • Look for patterns: Watch for repeated, interesting, or even unfamiliar use of language, imagery, sound, color, or arrangement. Ask, "What is the poet trying to show through this pattern?"
  • Look for changes: Tone, focus, narrator, structure, voice, patterns. Ask: "What has changed and what does the change mean?"
  • Identify the narrator: Ask: "Who is speaking in the poem?" "What do you know about them?"
  • Check for new understanding: Re-read the poem (aloud if you can) from start to finish, underlining (again) those portions you do not yet understand. Explain the poem to yourself or someone else.
  • Find the crucial moments: The pivotal moment might be as small as the word but or yet. Such words often act like hinges within a poem to swing the poem in a whole new direction. Also pay attention to breaks between stanzas or between lines.
  • Consider form and function: Now is a good time to look at some of the poet's more critical choices. Did the poet use a specific form, such as the sonnet? Examples might include: alliteration, symbols, metaphors, or allusions. Other examples might include unusual use of capitalization, punctuation (or lack of any).