Monday, February 25, 2008

T'as de beaux yeux, tu sais.

1. Congratulations! You wrote your first play. Reflect on your experiences here in paragraph form. Be sure to including explanation for your ideas. Write at least 75 words.

Whenever I have a writing assignment, everything from essays to poetry to this play, I always talk to my friends about every step of the process. I was talking to a friend about historical events to adapt into a play, and she came up with the idea to write about the Defenestration of Prague. I did some research, and began to craft the play. Something that my friends and I have been doing for a couple years now, as strange as it may seem, is to copy and paste troublesome sentences into a Google Chat window to have them help with phrasing and such. Sometimes all it takes is a fresh pair of eyes to work out the issues. I actually had a lot of fun writing the play, and it was also a lot of fun to read what other people wrote. The topics of the different plays were all so different, and said a lot about each of the authors.

2. If you could give advice to a kid who was 5 years old or 10 years old (pick one), what advice would you give him or her on growing up in today's world? Would you give advice based upon your own experiences? Would you give advice based upon what you see in others? Would your advice be based on their thoughts, their choices, peer issues, school? Explain your advice and why you give it. Write at least 100 words.

If I could give advice to a kid who was 10 years old, in about fourth or fifth grade, I would probably be cliché and tell them not to worry about what other people think about them. Kids around that age start to become extremely self-conscious, and the media sends them all sorts of messages about the type of person they are "supposed" to be, how they are supposed to look, act, think, etc, and in reality it doesn't matter. I remember being that age, and how people that were my friends had suddenly changed, and were now into shopping instead of the craft projects we used to do together. Looking back, if no one cared about what others thought, everyone would just be themselves.

3. Great works of literature can last a long time. Jane Austen's novels (including Pride and Prejudice, Emma, and Sense and Sensibility) are still popular almost 200 years after they were first published. Anne Bradstreet's poems have survived about 400 years. The works of Greek playwright Euripides (who wrote Medea) have survived for over 2000 years. What do you think causes great literary works to live forever? Could you ever foresee yourself writing something that lasts that long? (Write at least 75 words.)

I think that part of what makes great literature great is the universal themes that they discuss. As much as it pains me to say this, I think that part of the reason they live forever is because people can continually relate to the characters and ideas presented in the books, even if they are set in different time periods. However, I also think that there are some works of literature that live on just because people refuse to let them die, continually beating out new meaning. Conoisseurs of literature have invented countless ways of analyzing writing, everything from applying different lenses to pretending to find "implied" meaning in places that don't make sense, and as long as people keep finding ways to squeeze messages out of works of literature, they will never die.


Mr. Miles said...

I'm glad you liked writing the play. I thought your topic was very interesting; I'm glad I know where you got it from. :)

I also think works survive when they tell great stories. PRIDE AND PREJUDICE, for example, survives for many reasons, but the biggest is that people love hearing that story and spending time with those characters.

Maitland said...

J'ai de beaux yeux! Anyway,why does it pain you to say "that part of the reason they live forever is because people can continually relate to the characters and ideas presented in the books, even if they are set in different time periods"? By the way, I think the Cefenestration of Prague is about the funniest play subject about ever! I love when you're out of ideas about a sentence, and then someone else just has a compltetly new take on it!

Stef said...

I say it pains me because that what English teachers have been telling me for years, and the analysis of books isn't exactly my favorite thing to do...

MSDhoni said...

You wrote about the defenstration of Prague? That's freaking awesome!

Anyway...I used the term "Universal Theme" exactly in my blog as well. Great Minds think Alike I suppose. Accordingly, I agree with basically everything you said in the third prompt. And I agree with Maitland, I think that it's should pain you to say that the people continually relate to great books. That's what makes them great books and it is a great thing.

Dustin A said...

I know what you mean about extracting meaning out of famous works--the mentality in English classes is that the author of a piece is infallible and can pack an infinite amount of wisdom into a few words. They're certainly good writers and have a lot to say, but we're definitely putting some words in their mouthes. Last quarter I was assigned to write a page about poetry's connection to a book that had no reference to poetry whatsoever, and the result was a bunch of jumbled writing that sounded like it meant something but didn't.