blog 12?

As explained in class, we spoke about the importance of African Literature and exactly, what is the definition of African Literature? Overmore, shall we let the English language dominate this culture? Language has always been seen as a means of communication for people throughout the world. It shows character in a means of culture, heritage, or in this case, a new beginning of entering a new world for Africans. This can be shown, for example, in situations of “In a Heart of Darkness,” “Things Fall Apart,” and so on. Of course, Achebe’s interpretation/perspective of African Literature VS English is also enlightening because of how he stands for yet against this very idea. Achebe’s approach on African Literature and how it can utilize English to its advantage is very interesting. In quote, “African writers should utilize English  in a way that brings out his message best without altering the language to the extent that its value as a medium of international exchange will be lost. He should aim at fashioning  out an English which is at once universal and able to carry his peculiar experience,” (854.) His readers can determine that although he is not too fond of the idea in which English is an uneasy, forceful domination, it can still be well balanced in terms with African literature. Authors of African literature just have to know how to bring out their point without changing it. Achebe’s stance on African authors in which they have to use English can be seen as a “pragmatic optimism.” This means that, they must make the best of everything although they hate it entirely. True authors, I believe, can still achieve success using the English language. If someone loves literature as a passion(or anything for that matter) – in a means to writing, reading, and educating, they will do so. They will still hold their talent of writing and share it to the world; it is not such a negative idea to learn about another language. For example, I, myself, is studying Spanish – its culture, history, and so on. This is very fascinating to me because I get to share speaking Spanish with my co-workers; it makes me look more intelligent.  But of course, in this case, it is understandable because the Africans were forced to.

Blog 11

After reading “Things Fall Apart,” by Chinua Achebe, this story truly hit me hard at home. Okonkwo, the man whom rejected everything in which his father stood for: love, kindness, calm, and very poetic – reminded me of my own father. Growing up, my father was very strong – strong in the sense of physical, mental, and emotional. Okonkwo, as well, interpreted the meaning of masculinity the same way as my father showed his children: emotionaless, mean, arrogant, and prideful. He never showed an ounce of love. I believe it is extremely ironic that karma (what goes around, comes around) worked its magic. After beating his wife, Ojigu, during the week of peace because of so-called “carelessness’ and  sending Ikemfuna (an semi-adopted son that Okonwo) basically to his own death, his life changes dramatically after that. First, for beating his wife, his community is already shocked and angry at this behavior. No one should disturb peace week. Secondly, he just perhaps one of the people that he actually only likes, to be murdered. These two situations were perhaps foreshadowing when he got sent to exile. I feel as though him being such an egotistic, angry, and what supposedly what a man is supposed to be, is his biggest flaw for it brought about his own devastation. This can be seen in reality as well – I know plenty of people whom never show their interior..They only put on what seems like a fake show for the entire world to see so they can be accepted. However, they’re a completely different person on the inside. In the end though, it only backfires on them because one can only bottle up so many emotions.. Okonwo taught me a lot. That being strong for so long can actually make you weak afterall..


blog 10.

Light. When one uses the term ‘light,’ I instantly think of perhaps an epiphany – a realization of some sort where a person uses the phrase, “A lightbulb just occurred.” This is, in most cases, a good thing. On the other hand, in “Light is like Water,” by Garcia Marquez, light is continuously used as a metaphor as a means for exploration. For example, when the two boys broke one of the light bulbs, a ray of light shone spectacularly towards them and in the quote, “They let it run until it reached a depth of four hand spans,” pretty much peaks the point of these boys’ lives (Marquez.) This quote pretty much lays it on the line that they have been introduced to perhaps a certain kind of understanding of life for this new profound “light” caused them to act quite differently from there on out. This light created some kind of wormhole or another universe that opened two different kinds of universes for these boys. They were living in a certain magical fantasy – but only when their parents were out. I feel as though these boys wanted their class to feel that way as well, be stuck in this intriguing and exciting atmosphere with them. Hence, that’s why they all were dead..they were blinded by the light – yet they were opened to a new beginning.. This could also be seen from a religious point of view. Especially since the story started off from it being a holiday (Christmas,) perhaps the boys wanted to see heaven’s gates and for other innocent to join them as well? It’s sort of hard to explain this argument – but by all means, the students including the boys have reached the end of the tunnel when they all die. The tunnel where they all can get out of the  dark and see “new light.” I believe, that is why – they killed their classmates on graduation day, to end it with a bang (and a very unbelievable ending it was.)

Blog 9

Invisible cities? How can one see anything “invisible” in “Invisible Cities” for the ever so graceful Italo Calvino paints such a bleak picture of something so beautiful? Calvino, being in the postmodernism movement, his stories were extremely swayed by the modernism world. While his writing is slightly different (weird,) it draws the readers because of how unique it is. This captivating story with its bizarre scenery and ideas twisted with words, reels in all readers besides those whom thirst for adventure or plots. He is very poetic. For example, in the city of Moriana, it quotes, “Its alabaster gates transparent in the sunlight, its coral columns supporting pediments encrusted with serpentine, its villas all of glass like aquariums where the shadows of dancing girls with silvery scales swim beneath the medusa-shaped chandeliers,” details every aspect of how beautiful the city is. I’m not quite sure whom would ever have such a creative mind such as this. How one can feel the sunlight shining through the glass, want desirable womens’ silhouettes casting away with their shiny outfits, and glamorous chandeliers dangling from the ceiling.   It was stories within stories (which reminded me of how interested I become when I see actors acting in movies or television shows) in which these tales are visited by Marco Polo and told to Kublai Khan. Interestingly enough though, the two men do not actually comprehend one another. The two didn’t speak the same language!  I feel as though this could be in comparison as to the quote “What you see isn’t always what you get.”  Primarily, meaning that Calvino’s tales are extremely more than just what meets the eyes (a certain beauty–) there’s an underlying statement behind it in which it makes the reader dig beneath his text to take them back into a memory, or places they’ve never even dreamt of before..

blog 8

As defined by the Dictionary of Human Geography, Imperalism is “the creation and/or maintenance of an unequal economic, cultural, and territorial relationship, usually between states and often in the form of an empire, based on domination and subordination.” Prime example? The German Nazis. Indeed, “A Heart of Darkness” by Joseph Conrad exemplifies the complications of Imperialism in such undesirable passion that I, as an audience/reader, am filled with disgust. This novella goes beyond and deeper than just blatant racism, it’s pure ignorance and evil.   As Marlow begins his journey travelling out from the Outer Station and finally up the river, he witnesses the cruelty, torture, and slavery  in which the British take advantage of the natives. It is a bleak picture painted by Conrad  of the ignorance of the men who colonized Africa (The British.)

It can be also be debated that this story partakes majorly in non-whites in such a way that is menancing that it’s hard to comprehend of how one can do such terrible things. For example, Kurts openly is proud about his abuses towards the Africans. He is the chief example of what Adolf Hitler represented: ruling through violence by manipulation and intimidation while having Marlow as a naïve pet. He does not trade but rather takes ivory by force, and he describes his own treatment of the natives with the words “suppression” and “extermination.”

.This type of demoralizing and dehumanization  is harder to grasp than violence or open racism. Heart of Darkness offers great criticism of the deceitful operations of imperialism and it presents a set of issues surrounding race that is concerning.

How sad that this story reminds me of the Holocaust in which I am so passionate about. My heart broke for the Jews, the ones whom suffered the Holocaust, the ones whom fell victim to Hitler’s and the Nazi’s evil hands. It’s absolutely insane how one man could turn civilians into such a wicked and violent army that killed millions of people through manipulation by blaming their problems on a specific race…

Blog 6

Metamorphosis. First thing that comes to mind….what would happen if I turned into a bug? I would be totally freaked out.

- Real blog:

Franz Kafka’s “The Metamorphosis,”  is a complete mind-boggling, twisted, and upsetting story. It begins by Gregor Samsa whom suddenly discovers himself transformed into a giant bug and throughout the story, he has to slowly copes with the negative interactions, responses, and acceptance from his “beloved” family and loses humanity all itself. After his transformation he stays almost exclusively in his room with his door closed referring to it as an “imprisonment.” He is unable to speak, and consequently he has no way of communicating with other people. He barely even stays in touch with his sister, Grete, whom he unconditionally adores. Over the course of the story, this feeling of separation actually preceded his transformation. Gregor reflects on his life as a traveling salesman, noting how insincere and temporary his relationships are. Later, Gregor recalls how his initial pride at being able to support his family faded once his parents began to expect that support, and how he felt emotionally distant from them as a result (they are ungrateful.) There is also no mention in the story of any close friends or intimate relationships outside his family. Gregor’s metamorphosis literally separates him from the human race as it makes him no longer human. In fact, the alienation caused by Gregor’s metamorphosis can be viewed as an extension of the alienation he already felt as a person.

The greatest consequence of Gregor’s metamorphosis is the psychological and emotional distance it created; furthermore, this alienation caused him to feel more of a burden which resulted in his death. It was Gregor who kept the family in their current stance and with him gone, they will now be able to move onto better things. Grete became their new hope when the parents saw her transform into a beautiful, young lady ready to be married. Metamorphosis. What are the odds of that?
I honestly have never realized how the roles could turn on between a child and parent relationship. Gregor was the man of the house: he provided for them, he cared for them, and was the least selfish of all. All the while being a bug, he still wants to send his sister to school for music. It gives it an interesting twist on how parents could actually be the antagonist at times..

Blog 5

In Henrik Ibsen’s controversial and dramatic tragedy, A Doll’s House depicts the image of women as a prisoner in marriage norms, a girl that needs to be given directions to, and mainly, portray her such as a “silly girl,” as said by Torvald. A Doll’s House, the title itself is a metaphor. When I was younger, I recall playing with my barbies, dolls, and enacting these toys to be a certain character just as Torvald treats his wife. As I grow older and realize, this image is all false and flawed because nothing can define a perfect human being. Nora is that character for she acts like a child-like wife dedicated to her husband, and before that a child-like daughter to her father. “I have been performing tricks for you, Torvald. That’s how I’ve survived. You wanted it like that. You and Papa have done me a great wrong. It’s because of you I’ve made nothing of my life,” (Act 3.) She recognizes that her life has been largely a performance  as the truth slowly unfolds. She has made “nothing” of her life because she has existed only to please men and they treated her like a “doll” to be played with and admired.This 1879 play sets a mouthful throughout Europe for exploration of Nora’s struggle with the traditional roles of wife and mother and her own need for self which results in her walking out from a seemingly “perfect” marriage.

Blog 4

Isn’t it fantastic how Kate Chopin could portray the importance of race in, “Desiree’s Baby.” Before the civil war, the 13th amendment which abolished slavery, and of course, the Jim Crow laws, Whites dominated the world. They took over civilizations, created their own governments, and made slavery as to what its out to be. In this story, it speaks of how Armand finds out that his baby whom belongs to Désirée, is actually mixed. Désirée herself is in complete shock when she discovers this “horrible” news for she swears that she is White then to make matters worse, Armand no longer wants to be apart of her life. Little did he know, he was the one whom was not pure. This has got to be irony at its best.  If one was to be put in that situation, how would one act to this “unmoral” act? This “unmoral” act would have never been accepted. For one, Armand already owned slaves of his own and for two, he would’ve had two choices: to give the baby away or become one of “them.” I believe, that he would’ve have given his baby away just as he disowned his wife without any second thoughts even though I’d believe, giving your baby away would be more demolishing.  He will never own up to the fact that he is mixed for he will mean what slaves mean to him – nothing. Also, for him to live with this conflicting reality, he’ll probably be the one whom ends up suicidal.  This just shows how dominant race played back in the days and furthermore and how it will affect a person’s life. It doesn’t matter what you love, it’s all about status… and sadly, ethnicity had to do with 99% of that back then.

Blog 3;

In the 18th century, it was all based on the idea of Enlightenment but as Kant implies, it will take growth and progress for this idea to come alive for it is still “immature.” It didn’t take philosophers to realize this, however, for civilians themselves, the idea was chilling and should be carried out upon on the Church.  Civilians were no longer going to be taken advantage of and saw the light. (I.E: French Revolution.) As realism is defined, “Interest in or concern for the actual or real, as distinguished from the abstract,” (Webster,) this gives us a certain perspective on how realism affected the 19th century.  Realists saw to it that these historical changes didn’t only affect the government, but it actually applies to everyday life. If the government is in the wrong, what about the people themselves? What are their “morals” or “ethics” of life? Realists didn’t agree with this, either and they dug deep into the core of what is the root of mainly all problems.

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