Monday, December 9, 2013

Parallel and Contrasts- 161 to End

Parallel-
"Perhaps in the world's destruction it would be possible at last to see how it was made. Ocean, mountains. The ponderous counterspectacle of things ceasing to be." (274)
"He'd not have thought the value of the smallest things predicated on a world  to come. It surprised him. That the space which these things occupied was itself an expectation." (187)
These two quotes shows how the father realizes all the small things in the world that he looked over. The father remembers his old life and the old things he loved to do like read and enjoy the beauty of the world. After the apocalypse, when the world turned gray in ash, the father is able to realize how much he missed these things. This shows readers to appreciate our lives and the little things that make us happy.

Contrast-
"But we did kill him" (260)
"We would never eat anybody, would we?
"No. No matter what.
Because we're the good guys?" (129)
This quote contradicts the father saying how they are the "good guys." Throughout the novel, the father preaches to his son how they are the good guy and carry the fire. Although the father says this to the boy, he does not believe it. This is proven when the boy states, "But in the stories we're always helping people and we don't help people"(268). This brings up the theme of good vs evil and examines what makes a person good. The boy believes that they should help all people, both good and evil. In contrast, the father believes that they should only help the good people. This is seen when the father leaves the thief starving without any clothes due to his actions of stealing the cart.

Questions-
1. When the women hugs the boy at the very end of the of the novel and says "Oh, she said, I am so glad to see you," how did the women know the boy? Was this family always going to come after the boy when the father died?
2. Did the father know he was going to die? or did he give up?

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Parallels and Contrasts- 230 to 259

Parallel-
"The slow surf crawled and seethed in the dark and he though about his life but there was no life to think about and after a while he walked back" (237)
"He thought of his life." (187)
Again, this shows the father slowly begin to give up on his life in the new world. The father no longer feels as if he is alive physically. This is seen when he says "he thought of his life." Readers should take note of how McCarthy purposely use the verb thought instead of think. This shows readers how he thought of his life in the past tense. Readers can infer that this means that the father does not have a life in the new world, which is also supported when he says "there was no life to think about." When the father realizes that he no longer is living mentally, he slowly gives up on his survival.

Contrast-
"Every day is a lie, he said. But you are dying. That is not a lie" (238)
"Okay. I might. But we're not dying" (101)
Again, this quote shows the father slowly giving up on his life. This is the first instance where he tells the boy that death is a possibility for both of there futures. In the beginning of the novel, the father always tells the boy that they both will not die. He encourages the boy to keep pushing for survival in hope that everything will get better. By the end of the novel when the father dies mentally, he starts to teach the boy how to survive by himself. He gives him more responsibilities and brings up death more often.

Questions-
1. Did the thief deserve to be stripped of his clothes?
2. Why does the boy feel sympathy for the thief if he knew he was bad? Does this action make him feel of his father as a "bad guy?"

Parallels and Contrasts- 211-230

Parallel-
"Like a man walking in a grave. Like those disinterred dead from his childhood that had been relocated to accommodate a highway" (213)
"His dreams brightened. The vanished world returned. Kin long and dead washed up and cast fey side wise looks upon him. None spoke. He thought of his life." (187)
This passage shows how the father is unable to give up his past life. When the father views himself in the world, he thinks of a "man walking in a grave." The father may be alive physically, but mentally he is dead. The father is only able to think of the past and cannot cope with the new world. Because of this mentality, the father begins to give up on his life.


Contrast-
"What's on the other side?
Nothing." (216)
"Someone had passed in the dark going south." (103)
From the very start of this novel, The father made it clear to readers that the south was safety, a place he thought the world might not be affected by the apocalypse. The boy and father walked thousands of miles to the south in hope of finding "good guys" and a better chance of survival. When the boy and the father arrive at the beach and look out across the horizon, they see that the war has affected the entire world. When the father sees this, all hopes of survival immediately diminish. This can be seen when he says that "nothing" is on the other side. To readers, it almost seems as if the father has given up now that he has realized that the world will no longer return to the past. I think the father wanted to go to the South in hope for a chance of survival and to question if the world and human nature could remain the same. When he realizes that the south is similar to the north, the father is unable to move on. He is discouraged and gives up. I think this is also why the father begins to slowly get sicker and weaker within the next few chapters.

Questions-
1. Do you think the father will give up now that the south was different from what he expected?
2. Did Cormac pick the sea to be the end point of there journey since the sea represents life and death?

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Parallels and Contrasts- 185-210

Parallel-
"What you put in your head is there forever?" (190)
"Yes. You forget what you want to remember and you remember what you want to forget." (12)
This parallel has come up multiple times in this novel. I think this parallel is very interesting because it shows how the father is unable to get over the past, while also stating a important idea for all humans. When we experience something tragic, such as war or an apocalypse, it will always be with us forever. There is no way we are able to get these memories from our mind. This is seen all over the world in common cases of Post Traumatic Stress disorder with soldiers to rapes and deaths of families. It's interesting that Cormac McCarthy says this in his novel because we are able to relate to these emotions that the boy and father have been through. Because McCarthy mentions this line multiple times, it shows how tragic this new post apocalyptic world is.

Contrast-
"I was crying but you didn't wake up."
"Im sorry. I was just so tired."
"I meant in the dream." (183)
"He woke whimpering in the night and the man held hhim. Shh, he said. Shh. It's Okay." (36)
When the boy has a bad dream, the father almost always wakes up to comfort him as seen on page 36. This time, when the boy has a bad dream about the father, the dad does not wake up. I find this interesting because in the dream, the father dies. I think this is important to look at since Dreams play a huge relevant part in the book. Its interesting how after the boy has this dream, the father becomes deathly sick. I believe that McCarthy makes this  huge contrast for readers to notice the possible death of the father. This idea parallels the father's good dreams, which he believes are a sign from heaven of nearby death.

Questions-
1. How has the dead baby affected the boy? Do you think he views the world different because of him witnessing numerous murders or do you think he is used to it and does not know any better?

2.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Parallels and Contrasts- 165-180

Parallel-
"What's your name? Ely." (167)
"The clock stopped at 1:17." (53)
During this novel, McCarthy makes sure to not include any physical description of any of the characters. When we meet the stranger, we find out his name to be Ely. This is very significant because it could resemble the prophet Elijah, the savior who brings people out of their suffering. This shows theme of religion and faith that is mentioned in the book several times. The symbolism of the character Ely is parallel to when readers learn of the first moment when the apocalypse started as seen through the father's dream. It's interesting that McCarthy adds the detail of the clock stopping at 1:17 because the book of Elijah is introduced in the Bible in 1 King 17.1. I find it interesting how both these rare specific details are related. I think this shows how McCarthy wants us to realize that Ely has a bigger significant importance than being just a stranger, but possibly a biblical reference.

Contrast-
"Where men can't live gods fare no better. You'll see. It's better to be alone. So I hope that's not true what you said because to be on the road with the last god would be a terrible thing so I hope it's not true. Things will be better when everybody's gone." (172)
"Better for who? Everybody" (172)
I think it's interesting how Ely believes that the world will be better for everybody, when everybody ceases to exists. When talking to Ely, it always seems that he is contradicting himself. He states how he wishes that he had died, but does not want to die. I think these contrasts show how Ely has given up on himself and his identity. It seems that he doesn't care about the new world and no longer cares about religion or himself. I think this is why the father immediately feels that Ely will die. Ely is unable to trust anyone and because of this, he feels that the world will be better with everyone dead. This shows readers the state of human nature and morals in the apocalyptic world.


Questions
1. Why does the boy feel the need to help everyone on the road? Is he the only one on the road who still has human morales?
2. Why does Ely say he is a prophet but does not believe in religion?

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Parallels and Contrasts-135-160

Parallel-
"They passed a metal trashdum where someone had once tried to burn bodies. The charred meat and bones under the damp ash might have been anonymous save for the shape of skulls." (150)
"The wall beyond held a frieze of human heads, all faced alike, drive and caved with their taut grins and shrunken eyes."(90)
One important theme shown through this novel is the concept of cannibalism. Cannibalism is brought up over five times throughout the book. Not only does McCarthy mention cannibalism, but goes into the gruesome details of the killing of each victim. I think McCarthy does this because he wants readers to remember these passages in the book and be able to connect them. The fact that humans are eating each other shows how the worlds order and morals have deteriorated. People no longer care about each other; they only can think about survival. I think this shows how McCarthey could feel about human nature today going along with the theme of "good vs. evil." Cannibalism is also important to pay close attention to because it shows the past life of greeks and egyptians while also giving readers a clue of what could have caused the apocalypse.

Contrast-
"Maybe he understood for the first time that to the boy he himself an alien. A being from a planet that no longer existed." (153)
"With his great staring eyes he'd the look of an alien." (129)
I think this quote is very important for readers to understand about the father's personality. Throughout this entire book, the boy is compared to an alien from the new world. The father has always been from the past and has shared his perspective and view of the old world with the readers. When the father realizes that he is the alien, readers are able to realize that the father is unable to give up the past. This is seen when the father states "That he could not enkindle in the heart of the child what was ashes of his own."(154) This is very important to look to not only understand the father- son relationship, but to look at the theme of the past vs present.

Questions-
1. Do you think the father would be able to kill himself in order to escape the misery of the earth? Or would he always picture his wife and feel as if he had lost the battle for life and his son?

2.

Friday, November 29, 2013

Parallels and Contrasts- 118-135

Parallel-
"The boy's candlecolored skin was all but translucent. With his great staring eyes he'd the look of an alien" (129)
"He watched him while he slept. Taut face and hollow eyes. A strange beauty" (102)
I think McCarthy is trying to show the past vs. present between the father and the son. When the father explains to his son the old world before the apocalypse, the boy does not understand. He is an alien to the old world and will never be able to truly understand what it was like before. I think this is important to make the man and the boy opposites because it's show the idea and theme of history repeating itself, a theme that is questioned and brought up throughout the entire novel.

Contrast-
"Rich dreams now which he was loathe to wake from. Things no longer known in the world. The cold drove him forth to mend the fire. He thought each memory recalled must do some violence to its origins. As in a party game. Say the word and pass it on. So be sparing. What you alter in the remembering has yet a reality, known or not" (131)
"He said the right dreams for a man in peril were dreams of peril and all else was the call of languor and death" (18)
In this novel, the reoccurring theme of dreams is brought up several times. The man believes that he should be dreaming of dreams in peril due to the conditions and environment he is in. If the man dreams of bad and horrendous images, he will not be upset to wake up to the harsh reality of his new life. Although the man believes this, it contradicts what he actually dreams of. The man is unable to forget his past life, which he states in the quote on page 131. The man says that whenever he thinks back to his memories, he changes them in his mind so that he only views the good of his past life. For instance, many of his memories with his wife were awful, but just like in the game of telephone, he only remembers the positive and chooses to forget the negative images.

Questions-
1. What makes the good guys the "good guys" and why do they carry the fire?
2. What does this show about humanity?

Parallels and Contrasts 94-118

Parallel-
"What is it? It's a treat for you. The boy took the can. It's bubbly, he said. It's Coca- cola" (23).
"What's the neighborhood?" (95)
Throughout this book, the theme of past vs. present is established in many ways. Many times McCarthy shows us the past vs. presents in dreams and memories. Another way he shows the past vs. present is through the two main characters, the boy, and the man. The man represents the past. In fact, whenever we recap the memories from the past, it is always seen through the dad's perspective. The boy represents the present. This is why readers do not see any dreams or memories from the boy of the past. In the two quotes, the boy does not know of coca-cola, or the word neighborhood. I think Mccarthy uses these two parallel examples to show readers how the boy does not remember anything before the apcolayspe. This theme of past vs. present is important because it questions if history repeats itselfs, such as the boy starting out as the new "present generation" since he does not remember of the past.

Contrast-
"Curse god and die" (115)
"Christ, he said. Oh Christ." (110)
In the novel, the theme of religion is brought up many times. Most of the times, the dad talks to god in a pleasant manner. This is seen on page 110 and throughout the book when he asks god for help or advice. However, after the man sees the cannibalism of the young men at the farm, he no longer praises god. The man's mood completely changes toward god. This can be seen on page 115 when he curses god's name. This is an important contrast. This could show how the man is starting to no longer believe in god.

Questions-
1. Is the man hallucinating when he sees the room of dying people?
2. How has the new world and upbringing impacted the boy?

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Lights, Camera, Action-

"And the dreams so rich in color. How else would death call you? Waking in the cold dawn it all turned to ash instantly. Like certain ancient frescoes entombed for centuries suddenly exposed to the day" (20).

I think it would be important to capture this passage. This passage describes the fathers dreams vs reality and sets up how he feels about himself in this new world. Dreams are a super important theme in this book so they need to be heavily highlighted in this movie. This passage shows how the father feels about dreams.

To start, I would use multiple shots and different scenery's.
My first shot would be a dream land. The colors would be bright and you would capture the father and his wife on there wedding day. The shot would at first be a long distance shot, portrayed through the eyes of the father. The wife would be walking closer and closer to the father who is the point of view. After this, there would be a shot of the father putting a ring on the wife's finger. This shot would still be portrayed through the fathers eye's so you would only be able to see his hands. There would be nondiagetic music in the background of birds or a happy melody. The last shot you would see would be the ring falling to the ground. At first it would be a high angle shot looking down, but would slowly zoom it. This signifies the fathers loss of the wife. When the ring fell, there would be a loud thunder clap, and one teardrop falling to the floor. This would be your transition from the past to the present. At first it would be zoomed in, but would gradually expand showing viewers the world after the apocalypse. This world would be dark, gloomy, and raining. The next frame would be of the father screaming and crying, showing viewers how is not able to grasp his new life on this new world.


The Literal World of The Road

In this novel, McCarthy uses many choices in his writing for how he wants to portray the new world after the apocalypse. Reading this book, I found McCarthy use of new and elaborate words, spacing of paragraphs, and purposeful fragments in the text. At first, I did not know why McCarthy chose to write in this style. It did not make sense to me why there was short, choppy, incomplete sentences that confused the reader, and words that were hard to understand and did not offer anything to the text. I was also confused why the characters did not have any names. It all did not make sense to me until I read through the first quarter of the book and realized the themes that connected to McCarthy's writing style. While describing the Literal world, McCarthy states, "Nights dark beyond darkness and the days more gray each one than what had gone before. Like the onset of some cold glaucoma dimming away the world. His hands rose and fell with each precious breath" (4). From the very start of the novel, we are able to see through McCarthy's writing the world after the apocalypse. Readers are able to see McCarthy's use of vocab when he uses the word "glaucoma." Glaucoma is a eye condition that leads to blindness. Most writers would describe the world with terms that easy for readers to understand. They would state how streets were barren, and the city lights were black. Instead of doing this, McCarthy makes us wonder by confusing us with his vocabulary and odd sentence placement. He confuses us purposefully to make us feel like the characters are feeling in this new world-- lonely, confused, and isolated. This is why McCarthy uses so many fragments and weird word choices in his novel. He wants to confuse us and make us feel abnormal- He wants us to have the same feeling his characters endure. In the passage above, it is a short paragraph but tells the readers so much about this literal world. From the start, McCarthy says, "Nights dark beyond darkness and the days more grey each one than what had gone before." From this readers can visualize a dark, depressing world that the characters live in. He next uses the vocab world glaucoma in his next sentence to confuse readers. He states this to show how the vision of the world that we see as "normal" is fading. The last sentence shows how the characters are in survival. McCarthy shows the importance of survival by stating "his hands rose and feel each precious breath." This shows readers how the characters are living in fear of death. These three sentence, I think, show the entire literal world that is mentioned throughout the book. These three sentences are important and show McCarthy's style of writing in the fragments, sentence placement, and choice of vocabulary. 

Dream On

After the first quarter into the book, The Road, I started to notice many symbols and examples relating back to the theme of dreams. Dreams are very important in this novel and are the only way the characters are able to escape from the harsh reality of the world after the apocalypse. The characters are faced with many challenges as they have to survive in severe conditions with little to no food.  In order to survive, the characters have to travel miles every day through cold rainy conditions in tattered clothing offering no protection. In this novel, we see how the dreams of the father and son are extremely different. The father dreams become more vivid and colorful as readers go deeper into the novel. His dreams express his pleasant memories of his wife and his life before the apocalypse. Readers are able to see his prior life and how it shaped him as a character. This is seen when he describes his wife. He states, "In dreams his pale bride came to him out of a green and leafy canopy. Her nipples pipeclayed and her rib bones painted white.... "(17). This dream continues as he remembers his wife on their wedding day. Although the father dreams of sweet memories, he believes that these dreams "so rich in color" are a "calling from the dead." The father thinks that living in peril, his dreams should be bad to represent how he feels about his life. The father thinks that if he has bad dreams he will be able to preserve because he will not be disappointed to realize the brutality of his life when he wakes up. The father does not want to escape from the world he has entered, he wants to embrace it and forget the past life he had. This is seen when the father leaves his identity in the road as seen on page 51. Although the father tries to forget his past, he is unable to. This is seen when he states, "The things you want to remember you forget, but the thing you try to forget you remember" (8). The father is unable to give up the past life and memories he has had. He will always have dreams of his wife, which he believes is a sign from the heavens that he will soon die and be out of the misery of the new world. 

Different from the father, the boy has grown up during the apocalypse. He does not remember or have a past life. Because of this, the boy has learned the gruesome truth of human nature and how to survive. Most boys his age in "normal" time would be playing with cars and playing in parks, instead, the boy has to learn how to shoot a gun and watches the massacre of thousands as he goes down his journey on the road. This effects the boy tremendously by making him more silent and withdrawn from the world. The boy states, "The last instance of a thing takes the class with it. Turns out the light and is gone. Look around you. Ever is a long time. But they boy knew what he knew. That ever is no time at all" (28). The boy has accepted and realized the truth about his fate in the new world. He understand human nature and how morals and civilizations no longer exists, which the father has a hard time to grasp. Because of the boy understanding his terms and fate in this new world, he has bad dreams. This is seen numerous times in the first quarter of the book when the boy wakes up and says "I had a bad dream." In fact, almost all of the boys dreams are bad. One of these examples is on page 37 when the boy states,  "I had this penguin that you wound up and it would waddle and flap its flippers. And we were in that house that we used to lived in and it came around the corner but nobody had wound it up and it was really scary... The boy didn't answer. Then he said: The Winder wasn't turning" (37). This dream refers back to human nature and the characteristics of the boy. Since the boy is having bad dreams, the father believes that he will be able to survive and preserve through the new world. This is one reason, why the father refers multiple times to his son as "godly." The dream, I believe, represents human nature. Because the penguin winder wasn't turning, I think this shows how human nature and morals are coming to extinction and are no longer in control. The boy is able to accept this and knows his fate in the new world. 

Dreams are important in this novel and show readers the differences between the father and the son, and the fate and reality that is played in this novel. 

Friday, November 15, 2013

Parallels and Contrasts: 53-72

Parallel-

“All of this like some ancient anointing. So be it. Evoke the forms. Where you've nothing else construct ceremonies out of the air and breathe upon them." 

"A single gray flake sifiting down. He caught it in his hand and watched it expire there like the last host of christendom" (15).

This is the second example where McCarthy compares the son to God, or Jesus. In the first section, The boy catches the snowflake which symbolizes the "last host of christendom." This is similar to page 62 when the father cleans the blood from The Boy's hair and says " All of this like some ancient anointing." The father continues to describe the boy as something holy, something greater than himself, which is symbolized when the father refers to the son as the "golden chalice." This is important to recognize because the Boy is what keeps the father alive. Just like God and Jesus who the led the way for thousands during times of chaos and brutality, the son is the push and drive for the fathers survival. This is why the boy is compared through similes and metaphors to religious symbols and beliefs. 

Contrast-
"I'll bet that boy is hungry. Why don't you all just come on to the truck? Get something to eat. Aint no need to be such a hard-ass" (65)
"The boy's knapsack was gone. Coming back he found the bones and the skin piled together with rocks over them. A pool of guts. He pushed at the bones with the toe of his shoe. They looked to have been boiled. No pieces of clothing" (71)
This was the first interaction the two main characters had with other people living after the apocalypse. At first, the stranger seems very friendly. He offers the boy and the father food and a place to stay. However, the father sees through the stranger and acts very defensive. As a reader, I wondered why the father did not trust anyone; I did not understand why he had to shoot the stranger who only wanted help in exchange for food and comfort. When the father and the boy came back, they noticed the stranger had been boiled and eaten alive. Everything that was in good use had been stripped and taken away from the stranger by his "friends." This shows how the stranger was using food as an excuse to be able to kill the father and the son. This also shows readers why it is important to be suspicious and not trust anyone who you meet. This contrast show the deterioration of the human race. After the apocalypse, humans are willing to sacrifice their morals and beliefs in order to survive. They are willing to kill each other if it means they will be able to live. This is important to examine because it shows humans true colors and relates back to the theme of war, which could have started the apocalypse. 

Questions-
1. Do you believe in this aspect that humans are evil as portrayed through the experience with the stranger?

2. Why didn't The father decide to kill himself with his wife? What pushed him to survive?

Parallels and Contrasts- 31-53

Parallel-
"They piled a mat of dead hemlock boughs over the snow...." (31).
"The raw dead limbs of the rhododendron twisted and knotted and black" (40)
During this segment on the novel, The Road, I noticed McCarthy's particular choice in wording. In The Road, McCarthy repeats several words to show a importance and meaning to his readers. A theme that is repeated is the use of poison and death. One way McCarthy does this is through the use of plants. After the apocalypse, the only plants that seemed to survive were poisonous ones such as hemlock and rhododendron. In fact, McCarthy describes the world after the apocalypse as a "grey heap of ash." The only living plants and landscape that survived seemed to be weeds and poisonous plants. I find this to be meaningful because both rhododendron and hemlock are poisonous plants that many times symbolise death and poison in literature. I think that this could show how the life before or after the apocalypse was poisoned by the acts of human nature. This is a important question to keep in mind because readers do not know what caused the apocalypse. This symbol of poison and death could be a theory of what happened before the world was destroyed portrayed through the use of plants.

Contrast-
"If they got wet there'd be no fire to dry by. If they got wet they would probably die" (14).
"The waterfall fell into the pool almost at its center.... Is it cold? Yes. It's freezing. Do you want to go in? I don't know. Sure you do, come on" (38).
In the beginning of the novel, The Man makes it clear to readers and the boy how important it is to survive. In fact, The Man carries a gun and uses extra precaution when traveling the road for there safety. However, when The Man and The Boy reach the waterfall, the man insists and encourages the boy to jump in. This is contrasting what The Man said in the first segment. Readers would think that The Man would not want The Boy to jump in the water in fear of death and hypothermia. The Man knows that if they get wet, it will be hard to survive. I think the man encourages the boy to jump in the water because he wants the boy to live a normal life. The Man wants the boy to be able to experience memories and have every opportunity to live his life before he dies. This is why the Man gives The Boy the last coco-cola because he knows The Boy's days of living are limited. I think this shows the characteristics of the father. The father is overall a down to earth man who puts himself before his son. The man will risk everything for his son and his' happiness. This is why the man apologizes to the boy so much. The Man wants the boy to be happy and take every opportunity to his life before he dies.

Questions-

1. Do you think the man will regret leaving back his identity on the Road? What does this show and symbolize about his life?

2. How is the boy important in this novel? Why is he always compared to this novel and why does the father respect his opinion so much.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Parallels and Contrast: 1-31


Parallel-
 “Yes. You forget what you want to remember and you remember what you want to forget” (11).
“He mistrusted all of that. He said the right dreams for a man in peril were dreams of peril and all else was the call of languor and of death…. He thought if he lived long enough the world at last would all be lost. Like the dying world the newly blind inhabit, all of it slowly fading from memory” (17).

In this passage, we are able to visualize the mindset of the two characters, through their dreams, during the apocalypse. The Man believes that since he is suffering, his dreams should be bad to reflect how he is feeling on earth, alone and lonely. This way, when The Man wakes up, he will not be disappointed to realize his dreams were not true. He feels that if he continues to only have bad dreams, he will no longer remember and remorse of his past life, and his old world will “slowly fade from his memory.” Although The Man believes this, readers find this untrue when we see his dreams about his wife. For instance, “In dreams, his pale bride came to him out of a green and leafy canopy…” (17). This dream shows a positive memory in the Man’s life. Although the Man wants to forget these memories, he is unable to forget his previous life. This parallels the quote, “You forget what you want to remember and you remember what you want to forget.” A saying that is true in this book, as well as our lives today. Although the man wants to forget his previous life, he will always remember his memories that are apart of him. The man wishes to create an entire new world so he can accept the life he has and stop thinking of the joy he had in his past. I believe this is why Cormac decides to write this novel with fragments and neological words—to represent a new world. I also think Cormac refers to the characters as “The Boy” and “The Man” to show how they are trying to forget their old lives and move ahead.

Contrast-
“Clamped to the handle of the cart was a chrome motorcycle mirror that he used to watch the road behind them” (4).
“The road was empty” (4).

An ironic contrast in this novel is The Man’s paranoia. Ever since the apocalypse, The Man feels unsafe. He is always checking for other people living on the world. He does not light fires in fear of people being able to see the smoke. Whenever he looks for food at local gas stations, he always has his gun ready in case he sees someone. However, as Cormac describes in the book, “the road is empty.” Throughout these thirty pages, Cormac has made it clear that everyone has perished on Earth. I think that Cormac does this to show the confusion and trauma that The Man has witnessed during the apocalypse. The Man is no longer able to feel safe because he has lost everyone. The only thing he has left is his son. The Man is cautious for the safety of his son because he knows that if he dies, “He would want to die too.”

Questions-
1. Why is there no punctuation or grammar in this book? What effect does this have on its readers?

2. On page 29, The Man says, “But he knew that if he were a good father still it might well be as She has said.” Who is She? Why do all the characters not have names?

Sunday, November 3, 2013

The Last I Saw of Her


The Last I Saw of Her
Smokey room,
Bloodshot eyes.
A raise in pulse,
a large sharp cry
Broken books and
Shards of glass
Crash
To the floor--
The hurricane has arised

Fear within,
Comes out tonight
She holds onto
Freedom
She holds onto
Life.
And kneels down slowly
To her last defeat

Mascara tears
Run down her eyes
While Whiskey breath
Lingers behind

A metal fist
Anaconda arms
Wrap
Strangle
Gasping for air
She says the biblical words
Of her last breath.

Red tainted club
Splattered walls
A scene of a crime
The death of a girl
The last I saw of her


Monday, October 28, 2013

The Importance of Expression: Double Idemnity and LA Confidential




After watching the two movies, Double Indemnity and La Confidential, I was able to make many comparisons with the plot, scenery, and characters within each movie. Double Indemnity is a movie about a man, Walter Neff, who falls under the scheming plan of Phyllis Dietrichson to murder her husband in order to get the money for the accident policy. After the plan goes through, both Walter and Phyllis begin to feel suspicious of each other's motives. Walter is ashamed of himself for breaking his morals for money and a girl. At the very end, due to there suspicions, both Phyllis and Walter kill each other.
Similar to Double Indemnity, La Confidential is about the teamwork of two police officers, Bud White and Ed Exely, who work together to solve a case only to find out the corruption and truth behind the dark world of L.A Crime. In both these movies, Ed Exely and Walter Neff break there morals. In La Confidential, Ed Exely always said to Dudley that he would never shoot, beat, or plant corroborative evidence on a person who he felt was guilty. This is what made Ed different from the L.A Police team. Ed was fair and always used his morals and brain before assuming someone was guilty. By the middle of the movie, we see Ed fall under his words and morals as he shoots a African American who the L.A Police team believes was involved in a crime. The expression on his face, as seen in picture 48, shows Ed after he shot the suspected African American. Ed's face is covered in blood. His expression looks as if he is a wild, hungry animal. Ed looks both out of control and stunned at the act he has just done. He feels guilty about the person who he has become while working for the L.A police department. This is completely opposite to the Ed we were introduced to in the very beginning of the movie who was clean cut, poised, and fair.  This shot is a low angle shot, were viewers look up to Ed. This makes Ed seem more powerful like Dudley and the other officers who were usually taller than Ed in beginning shots. This angle shows another reference to Ed being compared to the corrupt officers, who he has become, due to the angle the camera is positioned at. This shot is a one person shot and highlights Ed's face. Another important fact about this shot is Ed's apparel. Ed is in a suit. This represents the old Ed who was fair, and elegant. This is completely opposite to Ed's face which is tainted and smeared with blood showing corruption, savageness-- the new man Ed has become.

This shot of Ed's guilty face is similar to the shot of Walter Neffs in picture 19. This shot is a close up, single shot of his face. Walter's face catches the light by shadowing the background. This is important because viewers are only able to concentrate on Walter's emotions. This picture shows Walter's guilty and shameful face after he strangled Mr. Diertrichson for Phyllis and the accident policy money. Walter is disgraced at the person who he has become, similar to Ed in L.A Confidential. Walter went against his morals for a scheming girl and money. He no longer knew who he had become. This can be seen when Walter says "I couldn't even hear my own footsteps," showing that Walter no longer knows himself after he committed these crimes, just like Ed.

Overall both these pictures are similar in that they both represent two young man who fell under the influence of corrupt people. These two characters show the same shameful and guilty emotion on there face after they committed a crime against there morals

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Who is David?

Finishing Stitches, I noticed the theme of Identity throughout the novel. At first, David had no opinion or free voice in his household. His mother and father were superior and chose for him. David was not allowed to read books due to his mother's belief against them. David was an outsider in his world and grew up alone. In the final pages of this novel, David shows how he fought for his free will. Instead of living a depressing life without voice, he chose to become a painter in which he could express his feelings and emotions through picture. David left his household at age 16 in order to make a new life for himself. He didn't want to fall into the fate of his parents who lied and ostracized him when he grew up. David overcame his parents superiority and learned that he was able to make his own decisions without them. This was seen through David's dream at the very end. In the dream, his mother is sweeping the path from David's house to the state asylum where David's grandmother had been locked away. The mother wants David to follow her path. The last page, in my opinion the most important page in the book, says two words, "I didn't." This is shown with a white background and black lettering which contrasts the black background and white lettering that was seen at the start of each segment. Because David did not follow his mother's path, this shows how he has become a new person. David did not fall under the influence of his mother or grandmother. This dream is important because it shows how David has been liberated and changed. By having the background white, the last page represents freedom due to white being a symbol of purity, and newness

Size and Shape of Frames

Reading the fourth section of Stiches, I noticed the importance of size and shape of frames and the organization within them. Many times, Small will have small images of an object close up. As you continue to read on, he shows more of the image until finally you see the whole image on one page. I think the author does this to show the importance of the picture. This was seen on pages 180 to 181 when David wakes up from the surgery with no voice. At first Small showed different shades of grey and black in small frames. Gradually, he drew more of the mouth so that readers were able to piece together and recognize the object. Once readers could infer or guess that it was a mouth, Small zoomed out of the object and drew the entire mouth on one page with extreme detail. By doing this, I concentrated on the object more and tried to guess what it was. When I saw different shades of black and grey I was confused and took more time to analyze them. This made a great impact when I finally realized the object was a mouth on the next page because I was able slow down my mind and think.
This was seen again on page 258 to 259. At first we see David holding onto to the rabbits legs portrayed through a small frame. Gradually, Small zooms up and focuses on a single tear. Finally, on the next page, he shows a flow of tears. This was important because it made readers think about David and his emotions. Overall, if an image is important, Small will draw small sections of the image until finally he shows the entire image on a separate page. From this, I was able to infer that pictures in larger frames are more important than the ones in smaller frames. In larger frames, Small uses more detail than in the smaller frames. The smaller frames seemed to be the description or build up for the larger frames. Smaller frames help you to read quickly, while larger frames show more detail and make you stop to look and wonder.
This technique is important for literary novel authors to do because it shows meaning and voice within the picture.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

David goes Down The Rabbit Hole

Halfway through the literary novel, Stitches, I was able to make connections with David's fate and and free will with the book Alice and Wonderland. Small makes many references to Alice and Wonderland throughout the book such as on page 196 where a rabbit looks for his mother in the rain. This theme is brought up again in the first section where David pretends to be Alice. Small draws a sketch of himself jumping into another world, "wonderland," to escape his life at home. While many people would pass over this connection to Alice and Wonderland, I looked at it more closely. Alice and Wonderland was a book based on a girl who felt umcomortable with her body and size during puberty. She loses control of her body when it changes in different way as she grows older. In fact, during one of the chapters in this book, one of the body parts that grows to a abnormal length is her neck. Alice goes down the Rabbit Hole, in order to escape her life on earth. I think that Small uses Alice and Wonderland to show and tell readers how he feels different and ostracized than the people in his life and world. David goes to his "wonderland" world by reading books and using his imagination just like Alice did. The only place David is able to excercise free will is in his imagination or "wonderland." I think that David overall did not have any choice is his life. His parents completely used him as a science experiement and on top of that his mother would not allow him to read or do the activities that he enjoyed. Due to his upbringing, David quit on his life. David failed out of school, got arrested, and disobeyed his parents to try and become noticed. After his surgery, David was unable to talk. He was different from his peers and overall unoticed. David disobeyed in order to become noticed by his parents and fellow peers just like Alice.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

The Importance of Repetition

Finishing section two in the literary work, Stiches, I noticed the repetition of two frames. Both of these frames were given an entire page, which made them stand out even more to readers. One of these frames was on page 123, a shot of a wave with a figure swept away from it. This shot appeared right after David and his mother got in a fight about the cost of seeing a doctor for David's tumor on the side of his neck. This same picture was brought up before on page 47 right after his mother was angry with David about losing his shoes at the hospital. Small quotes, "Her silent fury was like a black tidal wave, either you get out of the way or....." This description was led with a picture, taking up an entire page, of a tidal wave with David swept underneath of it. I think these two frames are important for readers to look at and understand, showing the characteristics of his mother. Both these photos occur after David gets in a fight with his mother, usually about money. I think this shows how his mother cares more about money then her two sons. Her mother insists they cannot afford for David to have the operation, yet she is able to buy a new car and clothing when her husband gets a promotion. I think Small does this to show us visually the priorities of the mother. The mother cares more about her image than the health of her two sons. The tidal wave represents the mother, and the little boy represents David. This overall shows how the mother has priority and first choice in the family, while David has no say-- also showing a important theme of Fate vs Free will.

Another picture that is repeated in the second section is on page 135. This frame shows the double mirrors of the hospital with the reflection of David and his mother in the background. This frame is after David and his mother go to the doctors due to the concern of David's growth on his neck. Before, this photo was seen on page 42 when David explores the hospital on the "Xray Floor." I think the double mirrors are significant in showing two sides to the hospital. The hospital is viewed as a place where one gets help, however, in David's case, the hospital represents a place where he was used as an experiment and offered no free will.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

"Words, words, words..."

After reading the first hundred pages of Stitches, by David Small, I noticed the vast difference of vocabulary and language presented in this book. Small uses very little words to describe the context of his pictures and mostly uses his artistic ability to tell his memoir. While this is different than most novels that I have read, I learned to enjoy and look at each frame discovering the hidden clues in the lightning and background of each picture. One thing I noticed was Small's use of Onomatopoeias. An onomatopoeia is the formation of a word through the imitation of a sound such as "Splat, Whack." Small uses these words to tell readers how we should feel about his characters. When we are first introduced to the mother, readers see the word "WHAP" bold and capitalized. Small says that "'whap' was the mother's language". He bolds these words to show the importance of them and there use of portraying the characters. For instance, after seeing the word "whap" I immediately thought of the mother as cruel-- someone who slammed doors and slapped her children. This word helped viewers be able to imagine the mother along with the picture rather than Smalls describing her through writing. Small uses this strategy of description through the use of Onomatopoeia in all of his pages. He makes sure readers notice these words by bolding and capitalizing them in contrast to the short, small context sentences. By doing this, it draws the readers eyes' to the frame. This technique is very important and helps readers be able to imagine the characters and book.

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Looking into Precrime

This photo shows Danny Witwer, the detective, investigating into precrime. It captions Witwer looking into the glass at the "temple" where they keep the three precrogs. Witwer is investigating into precrime to try and discover if there is any flaws in the system and identify if it truely works. The photo grasps Witwer seeing his own reflection from the window, while also showing the three precogs, Arthur, Dashiel, and Agatha in the tank. The photo only shows dark colors such as black and blue to show the emotions' of Witwer. Not only are the colors dark and blurry showing the emotion of evil, but so is the expression on Witwers face. Witwer seems concerned when looking at the precogs. It seems Spielberg is trying to show viewers that precrime is corrupt and gives not only the precogs but the entire nation no civil liberties. At first one would see this photo and think that Witwer's face is included in the shot, making the point of view from the camera.  However, after reviewing and examining the shot and scene, viewers are able to realize that the shot is from the point of view of Witwer. We are also able to tell that it is from the point of view of Witwer by noticing that the photo is very blurry, and highlights the attention on the detectives face. When seeing your reflection in a mirror or water, the picture is always blurry and your image is always portrayed in the middle of a scenery. This is exactly how this photo looks. Witwers face is oddly in the middle of the tank and seems to be floating since the rest of his body is not shown. The photo is very blurry around the edges and softens as it shows in detail Witwers face. From these examinations, I think viewers are able to conclude that this is the point of view of Witwer, overall showing his emotions and feelings towards precrime-- corrupt and unjust.

By making viewers see Witwers reflection and image, a popular detail in this move, it not only shows Witwers' expressions, but leads into his future and fate in the movie. Witwer is killed by Anderton in the movie. I think that by seeing his face in the precrime water shows how he will end up like the people who the precogs envision in their dreams, dead. This photo is from the point of view of Witwer as discussed above. It is a closeup, showing only the face of Witwer and the blurred bodies of the precogs. Since the precogs are shown, it is a four person shot. While this photo at first seems to be a photo of a detective with three precogs in the background, it shows and highlights a lot of important themes in this movie. It shows voice, fate, expression, and the views of civil liberties from Witwer. Witwer believes precrime is unjust and corrupt, we are able to see this through his body language, color, and lighting as seen through this photo.

Saturday, August 31, 2013

My Summer Movies, 2013

Movies in Theatre:
Bling Ring
The Conjurning
World War Z

Movies at Home:
Sex and The City
The Proposal
Legally Blonde
Safe Haven
Identity Theft
Fever Pitch
Batman 1, 2, 3
The Sitter
The Call
Casino Royale
This is 40
Catch me if you can
Titanic
Bridesmaids



Thursday, August 29, 2013

Oedipus the King


1.     After reading Oedipus the King by Sophocles, I believe that he was completely responsible for his fate in the play. Oedipus is a character who is very stubborn, arrogant, and makes impulsive decisions. This personality trait caused Oedipus to solve his own mystery, which was led by his actions and not “destiny.” Some examples of this in the text was in the very beginning of the play. On line 80, Oedipus talks to the priest in concern about the plague that has hit Thebes. When the priest asks for help from Oedipus, he states, “I acted at once. I sent Creon, my wife’s own brother, to Delphi—Apollo the prophet’s oracle—to learn what I might do or say to save the city”(80-84). This shows how due to Oedipus impulsive and fast taking decisions, he caused himself more harm then good. When he learned what Creon had to say, Oedipus digged deeper into the mystery of whom murdered Laius, only to cause him his discovery of his fate.
Another example of this is when Oedipus refuses to listen to Jocasta when she asks him to not talk to the Sheppard who knew who his real parents were. Jocasta states, “Oh no, listen to me, I beg you, don’t do this…. Listen to you? No more. I must know it all, must see the truth at last…. No please—for you sake—I want the best for you” (1167-1170). This shows how Oedipus only cared to find out the truth of who his parents were. Jocasta tried to warn him, but Oedipus would not listen. Because he did not listen, he found out that he was son of Laius and he was the reason for the curse on Thebes. Oedipus was the reason for his death due to his impulsive decisions and arrogant personality.

2.     In my opinion, I think that Oedipus is a wonderful leader, which caused him his fate at the end. Oedipus is very attune to his people and will do whatever is needed to make the city of Thebes better. In fact, Oedipus risked his own life to end the curse on the people of Thebes. Although Oedipus was a good leader, he also made some bad decisions. One of these would believing to heavily into the gods and the prophecy. Another would be not making wise decisions and not listening to what others had to say.

3.     Oedipus flaw would be his impulsive decisions. If Oedipus did not make these impulsive decisions without listening to other people, he would not have been exiled. Oedipus was always trying to figure out the mystery of who killed Laius. Oedipus kept digging and digging into a bigger hole, until he realized he was the one from the prophecy. 


4.     The movie, Minority Report, sets an example of supporting and stopping destiny. This is seen through the movies whole idea of precrime. John Anderton and his crew believe that you are able to stop and predict the future. They do this through their precogs, children who receive dreams that turn out to be future killings. When they see one of the precog’s dreams, it’s the job of the precrime crew to stop the murder before it takes place. Even if the murder does not take place, the murderer is still arrested because of his “destiny” seen in the precog’s dreams. This happened in the very first scene when the husband was arrested before he was able to kill his wife and her boyfriend.
Minority report also refutes destiny. John, the main character, is an excellent example of this. John was suspected and arrested for having a precrime seen in Agatha’s dream. John refuted destiny by not killing the man at the suspected time, showing the audience that the dreams are not always correct. In the end, we find out that John was setup by Lamar, John's superior.

5.     Eyes are a major symbol in the movie, Minority Report. The eyes’ of the precogs are used to see the future. The precogs use their eyes to tell their version of a nightmare to the precrime crew and the rest of the world. Through the Precog's eyes, Precrime is able to stop murders and stop the crime of killing in D.C for six years. Not only do the eyes' of the Precrogs show future murders, Agatha, one of the precogs, shows Lamars covered up murder when she states, "Can't you see" to John. 
The eyes’ of John show his identity. In the beginning, Johns eyes represented resent and the memories of him losing his son, do to John not carefully watching him at the pool. With John’s new eyes, he is a new person. He is able to overcome his destiny and stop the hypocrisy of Precrime. 
The eyes’ of the world show technology and advancement. Instead of someone’s identity being known from who they are, it has come down to technology. Now, people are tracked from their eyes. The police are able to watch the entire country through technology and the use of eyes. 

6.     Today, in America, our culture has changed largely based around technology. For the past century, people have invented and continue to think of new ways to make our lives easier. We have invented new medical equipment for the ease of a clean and quick surgery. We have invented new planes, cars, and trains that are able to travel faster and faster. Our world will continue to evolve for the rest of our lives as each country tries to compete with each other. Similar to the movie, just as Minority Report had huge advancements in technology, I think our world will too. However, with the increase in technology and competition in our world, our advancements are able to hurt us. This is seen in the atomic bomb warfare. As American started to increasing their technology in warfare, so did Russia. This ultimately ended up in all countries having access to the atomic bomb, a weapon so deadly; it is able to kill all of us in one single drop.