Author Archives: nelsoncrockett

DQ 15

The demon in the story symbolizes change. This is because the only thing that the demon leads to in the story is change for all of the people that are involved with it both directly and indirectly. For when the fisherman first finds the demon any of the choices that he is presented with do not lead him back to his old life. Then as soon as the fisherman is able to wrangle a reward out of the demon he changes the life of the king and all of the people that the king interacts with. Meaning that the only thing that the demon truly represents is change.

Two allegories that I noticed in the story presented were that you are treated based on how you treat others and that if you treat people badly that treatment will come back to harm you also. How you are treated is based on how you treat others is first shown in the story of the demon and the fisherman. When the fisherman treats the demon politely and tries to reason with him instead the demon only wants to kill the fisherman and due to this gets imprisoned back in the jar. Then is only released when he promises instead to reward the fisherman for freeing him instead of killing him. When the demon then keeps his promise he is rewarded with his freedom.

That your treatment of others will come back to hurt you is shown at several points in the story. One of the best examples of it though is the end of the story about prince and his wife. After his wife lied to him, cheated, imprisoned and turn the entire population of a city into fish, and tortured the prince. She had the love of her life killed and then was killed herself as punishment for her crimes.

DQ 14

1. The stolen beef and the jello have nothing in common. I the Yellow Woman the beef is used a a device to drive the plot of the story and leads to a death. While in contrast the jello is a background device that is used as part of an imagined scene of the main characters family. Each of these foods is used in the story but how they are used is so different that beyond them both being sources of food they have no other links.

2. Lelia’s father is someone who is stunned by what happened to his daughter but instead of trying to take any sort of action that could lead to a positive result he just shuts down. This paints him as a pathetic character. Giving the central character nothing more than a further method of tearing herself down after her rape.

3. The title Death Constant Beyond Love is basically a foreshadowing device that gives away the ending of the story. While at the same time it also describes the rest of the story showing that its going to be about love. So basically you can get the entire message that the author is telling just by glancing at the title.

DQ 13

1. The relationship between Gregor and his family is one of Gregor’s family living off of him. This is what stresses his relationship between him and his father and mother. His relationship with his father is especially stressed due to this because he knows that if his father was supporting the family instead of him he could leave. It is also what drives him to be close with his sister because he knows that she does not view him as a source of labour.

2. The first central event of the Metamorphoses is when Gregor changes. This signifies the change of the system of the family as a whole preventing the continuation of what was going and forcing them to adapt. The second event covers the adaption to the new situation in their lives all of the family members trying to find out how they are going to keep on living. Going into how it seems that everything is getting better until when the sister and mother try to improve Gregor’s room instead freak him out. causing him to run around the house and leading his father to beat him back into his room. The third event is when the family is forced to take on tenets and bring other people in their lives and further adaptation which drives them to make choices that benefit only themselves due to a lack of resources. Finally leading to them realizing that they cannot go on the way that they have and must make still more changes. Gregor realizes this too and since he knows not how to do anything else that will still benefit his family, the only motivation that he has in the whole story, he dies.

3. I don’t think that Akhmatova’s Requiem lacks effectiveness depending on the audience. When it comes to Russians who lived through the same horrors that Akhmatova did it would speak to them reminding them of what they endured. It is also likely that anyone who descended from those same people or who knew about that time period would feel the same. When it comes to those who have no level of context to give Akhmatova’s work its likely that it carries very little meaning for them.

4. We should interpret the line command to be that even though we cannot know all of the dreams, knowledge, and achievements of the past. Still we are able to view part of it and that part can be glorious. With that glory that we can only imagine is what drives us to further greatness.

DQ 12

Felicite is nether a saint or a simple minded servant instead she is simply a very lonely human being. In contrast to Mme. Aubain when someone in Felicite’s life dies she seems to hold onto them for the rest of her life never really letting go. Mme. Aubain goes through loss to but she seems able to get over it going on with the rest of her life and continuing to make new connections with other people.   Felicite on the other hand makes a few connections with people in her early life and then loses one by one all of them only making a new friend with the parrot Loulou late in life. Until she dies alone and has Loulou meet her in the afterlife she also then knows who loved her too.

The women depicted in the poems are shown to be different depending on the poem. In To The Reader women are shown to be the only real people in the world who are dealing with animals. They try to turn the animals into people but seem unable to succeed yet continue to try for they care about the animals. While in A Carcass women are described as carrion that are desired while ate the same time are repulsive. As if the reader is a buzzard that realizes that it is a buzzard and is eating rotten meat but unable to stop for its the greatest thing they have ever eaten.

Chandra and Chidam differ from Sita and Rama in that their behavior in keeping the story going is switched. In the Ramayana Sita only reacts to the decisions of other characters while Rama both reacts and acts. In the Rabindranath Tagore Chidam is the one who reacts to the choices of other characters while Chandra acts. Chandra does this by making up her mind in the very beginning of the story forcing everyone else to react around that choice even though it kills her. While Chidam makes all of his choices around the actions of others as he changes his mind over and over again. First to save his brother then to save his wife. Never really making any difference.

The poem When You Are Old reminds me of the type of thinking people engage in when they are old and looking back on their life. Thinking about both what they missed out in life and the regrets that they have. Shown in the line “Murmur, a little sadly, how love fled’.

DQ 11

Tartuffe only attacks the corruptions of religion not religion itself. This is clear due to the direct statement of the author himself in the last paragraph of his preface where he discusses the interaction of the king and the prince. Where they discuss another play Scaramouche that did not follow the propriety concerning religion at the time where the religious leaders did not appear to care about that play. The interaction ended with the statement “It is because the comedy of Scaramouche makes fun of heaven and religion, which these gentlemen do not care about at all, but that of Molière makes fun of them, and that is what they cannot bear’ which points out who Tartuffe was directed at.

Hugo’s account differs from Dante’s in how he describes Satan and hell itself. In Hugo’s hell consists of a large amount of falling and a loss of light that goes with that falling. It also features loneliness shown through disappearing stars as one of its main forms of punishments that define what Satan is going through. Then when Satan reaches the ground he is surrounded by muck and mountains a very desolate landscape. While Dante’s hell on the other hand is surrounded by people who suffer together depending upon their crimes. With that suffering being of a more physical nature not the mental one that Hugo describes. As for Satan himself I would not describe him as heroic but as pitiable. For he seems like someone who knows that he has been abandon and yet tries so hard to have some form of companionship. That type of action is not heroic its desperation and a desperation that deserves pity.

Giacomo Leopardi’s The Infinite is a poem that talks about solitude in a positive format. He says that on the lonely hills that he currently sits on he imagines even more endless spaces and how the human silence is the deepest peace. Heinrich Heine’s A Pine Is Standing lonely also talks about solitude but instead of welcoming it the pine dreams of a warm land far to the east that also has a palm tree standing lonely in the sunburnt rock strand. Heine approach is that loneliness also means separation from those that you care about and that this can become all that you think about. While Leopardi says that sometimes solitude is that best thing that you can ever ask for.

DQ 10

1. Machiavelli’s pattern of political ideals and concrete realities still have some current applications to this day while other parts of his patterns are no longer current in part of the world. In chapter 17 of The Prince he talks about how leaders are better off being feared as long as they are not hated. For democratic societies in this current day this no longer works because feared democratic leaders are not elected. As for some of the patterns that still effect society is the contrast between how princes should make promises but not keep them after they have what they wanted shown in chapter 18.

2. Women’s hair represents health and that is why it has such symbolic value in so many cultures and times. In the Ramayana when Sita and Rama are still discussing going into the wild part of the argument to stay in civilization is how their hair would grow matted. Which shows how living in the wild would affect there health.

3. In the song of Admonishing the flowers in the song are the warriors that are brought back to be sacrificed. One of the lines that show this is “not useless are the life-colored honey flowers’ in the end of the second verse of the song. The song continues in this line hitting on other points of the Aztec religion where the lives of humans restored the gods and the value the Aztecs saw in those lives. With the word ‘song’ also being used in the song has the same meaning for two different parts of the song. One is the continuance of the life of the gods and other beings that are restored by the human sacrifices. While the other is the the lives of the sacrifices and the vibrance of the lives of warriors showing why they are the best choice to restore the gods.

DQ 9

1. Griselda is being tested so that her husband Gualtieri could find out the limits of her character. He does this on a whim, lying a creating a situation that tried Griselda in many different ways. Until he found that he was unable to break her and then apparently decided that the game was over.

2. The Decameron and The Thousand and One Nights each have similar and different reasons for telling the stories that are in them. In The Decameron the main goal of the stories is to entertain for the point of forgetting about the rest of the world. All of the main ten characters are very specific about this telling there servants that only news of the outside world thats allowed to reach them is happy news. Escaping in this manner is there method of dealing with the massive amounts of death that now surround them. While in The Thousand and One Nights the aim is the opposite because the stories are being told to deal with a real world problem. Shahrazad also directs the stories in subtle ways to point out to Shahrayar that him killing everyone who displeases him is not the best method of dealing with people. While The Decameron has many of the different stories each with its own individual point they don’t have the same overarching point that The Thousand and One Nights does ands needs to meet its goal of stopping Shahrayar. The Decameron doesn’t need the unity of the tales that The Thousand and One Nights does though because its lack of direction helps it accomplish its goal of just to entertain people.

3. The nightingale symbolizes the love between the wife and the best friend. With the nightingales death it shows how that love was destroyed by the interference of the husband. Then the actions of both the wife sending the nightingale to the best friend and the best friend keeping in the golden box it symbolizes how they both will always treasure that love even though its no longer a possibility.

DQ 8

Dante learned on his journey through hell that a life lived in unrepentant sin has consequences. This is because a large part of his journey is not about him but about the people that he meets along his journey and why they came about their punishment. Dante talked to many of the different people in each level of hell and learned why all of them ended up in that level.   Corresponding with this was the punishment that seem to cause suffering that aligned with that sin. So that every sinner who was in that level of hell could always be reminded of the actions that had brought them to hell. All of this gave Dante a view of what sin is that showed him the difference of those that go to heaven and those that go to hell.

While I read The Divine Comedy I was reminded of the journey that someone takes as they spiral down in desperation before they hit rock bottom and start to change a habit. This is because as Dante’s journey goes on and as he travels through the different levels of hell he knows that he is going deeper into the darkness. Though at the same time the punishments that are faced by the sinners in that level could be either worse or not as bad as the punishments faced by all the previous sinners. That to me seems like whats its like on the journey to rock bottom because even though you know the situation is getting worse some parts are easier to deal with than others. The final part of The Divine Comedy is what really made me think of this. For Dante as he reached the very bottom of hell and as soon as there were no further depths to plunge into he started to climb up into heaven. A journey like that sounds exactly like falling to rock bottom and climbing your way back up.

DQ 7

Shahrayar’s madness is a product of two different things. One is the breach of trust that occurred when he found his wife cheating on him. The other was the that when he found his wife and he concubines having sex with the slaves he realized that the women he thought were his were lying to him. Throwing in doubt all of his interactions with them and giving him a glimpse into their lives far beyond what he had ever seen before. Sharayars reaction to this both does and doesn’t make sense to me. Its understandable that someone who is betrayed in such a way no longer trusts the people that he interacts with. What doesn’t make sense though is how he regards those people as something that he can just go and use and throw away as he sees fit. This type of mental interaction is something that makes sense on a mental level but not at an emotional one. As to if male egos are that frail in macho societies or his is a special case is answered by the Vizier. The Vizier struggles with his own daughter to try and prevent her from risking her life even threatening to beat her to get her to desist. Eventually he gives in but its easy to see that he cares for his daughter and wants to protect her to the best of his ability and is willing to allow her to change his mind. Showing that Shahrayar’s reaction is the exception.

When the Vizier uses the stories of the Ox and Donkey and the Merchant and his wife he is using these stories to prove a direct point. That point being that he does not want his daughter to put her life at risk and thinks so is a poor decision by using the tale of the Ox and Donkey. Then he threatens to stop her by beating her by telling the story of the Merchant and his Wife. While Shahrazad is using the stories that she is telling as a more indirect way of giving Shahrayar a different view of women. While at the same time showing him a way to punish people that does not require him to kill everyone that makes a decision that he doesn’t like.

I believe that the penalties in are a product of the time that they were written and in my opinion some but not at all of the penalties that were faced by those that preformed these actions were worthy of the punishment faced. One of the main combination of sin and penalty suffered that I had issue with was the people who were considered pagans and suffered even though otherwise they otherwise could have lived a very just and honorable life. Thats nothing more than a product of discrimination. A few of the other parts of the levels of hell I do agree with are how hypocrites and traitors are punished.

DQ 6

Rama’s perfections are the ideas for perfection of ancient Indian society and his imperfections are also the imperfections of that society. This is similar to Achilles behavior in the Iliad for Achilles was a representation of the perfect warrior in Achaean society. Giving a hero this type of perfection gives them a inability to make mistakes. Instead in these stories the supporting characters tend to make the errors that push the plot along. In the Ramayana its Sita sending Laksmana off to go and check on Rama as he kills the deer that Sita wanted. Or Jatayu dying as he failed to prevent Ravana from taking kidnapping Sita. These errors give these characters a more human perspective and makes them far more interesting than the ideal that Rama sets. What really makes that human aspect show is how these characters rise against their weaknesses and become better human beings. Rama’s mother Kausalya is a good representation of this when she deals with Rama leaving. Kausalya at first has a lot of trouble dealing with this for she expected her son to be a king and instead he’s now being exiled. She says she’s going with him, then that she’ll die if he leaves, finally after she talks with her son for a while she accepts that he is going to leave but still has her doubts. This shows far more of a human reaction to being exiled to a forest for fourteen years.

When Arjuna faces his kinsmen and can’t kill them he is consoled through Krishna. Krishna tells him that these men will be reborn in the cycle of life and that action, discipline, and his god will guide him on the right path. This attempt to cope with killing people is a huge contrast to the greek literature that we have read in this class. The Greeks deal with death as it faces them, like how Hector dealt with facing Achilles, and the death of their loved ones. With the grief processes that follows that no matter how that grief is processed similar to how Achilles dealt with Patroclus death. When it comes to killing the Greeks have an acceptance to it that is never really addressed. Even Medea who kills her own children is never shown trying to process that and instead simply accepts it as an inevitable result of Jason leaving her. Processing killing like this is a sign of both a narcissist and a sociopath. While Arjuna’s difficulties and how he deals with them is the sign of a person who cares for others beyond himself and is trying to make the best out of a poor situation.