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Monthly Archive for September, 2013

Emperor of Air

“With it I slapped up and down the trunk until the line was in chaos. I slapped until the newspaper was wet and tearing; with my fingernails I squashed stragglers between the narrow crags of bark.” The imagery of this sentence truly sums up the entire story. It is filled with the emotional turmoil this […]

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Alright, I’ll be the one to say it, since no one else will and since no one else, apparently, sees it this way: JGB, I agree with you.               In respect to “Charlotte”, singly, this one time, of course; and in respect to what the story has to say and what it leaves us with. […]

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Love In The Air

How painful it was to love and then give it up. If only he could forget that woman’s voice and her telegraphic style. Whether he could or not, he had to try. “Love In The Air,” by Ha Jin, places us into a world where innocence rules obsession, and obsession rules success.  The narrator, Kang, […]

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Tacenda

I think about reading that poem to her, but some things are too true to ever say out loud. Not many stories repeat their first sentence, but in Charlotte, that repetition is the first signal that this narrator has lost his relationship and is only now accepting the fact. Earley’s descriptions of the glamorous, false, […]

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In “Charlotte”, Earley uses the exaggerated comparison of stage wrestling to highlight a “love” relationship. The narrator and his girlfriend Starla have an interesting dynamic and Earley uses the theatrics of stage wrestling to give the reader a very accurate comparison. The love triangle involving the wrestlers includes two men who are in extreme opposition, […]

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This creative comparison between physical and emotional love through the use of a ridiculously outlandish yet honest and believable metaphor of professional wrestling relationships dealt with the sadness of love in a fun way. We are purposely thrown into the seemingly fantastical world of the narrator from the very beginning. The author’s decision to write […]

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And the winner is…

I won’t lie, it took me until the end of “Charlotte” to figure out that the Final Battle for Love was a mirror held up to the narrator and Starla’s relationship. Comparing a wrestling match to a relationship is an odd combination but Earley makes it work. Starla won’t tell him that she loves him, she doesn’t […]

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Love in the Air

There are several things that make “Love in the Air” different than many of the stories we have already read this semester.  The first thing that makes it different is the setting.  The story takes place during wartime.  I am not sure which war, but it feels like it is in the past.  Another way […]

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Ha Jin does an amazing job of creating Kang, the gentle giant. He is a clearly visible character with not only his physical description but also with his personality. By simply describing his stature and tone of voice it becomes very easy to relate to Kang. As he falls in love with the voice I […]

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Nobody wakes up in the morning hoping to have their world crumble down in front of them. Slowly, agonizingly. But for the characters in Earley’s “Charlotte” that’s exactly what is happening. The couple is in a loveless relationship living in a town that lost its soul. The story is about hope, and the loss of […]

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Stone: “Helping”

I struggled with Stone’s story “Helping.” I could not appreciate the voice of Elliot. In the scene with Blankship his voice was condescending and I could sense the bitterness that lay beneath the surface of Elliot’s struggles with alcoholism. I was fine with this until Elliot was with his wife, obviously he was drunk and […]

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Charlotte

I have a spoiler to tell, one that many people may not have realized… the climatic love story between Darling Donnis, Lord Poetry, and Bob Noxious was fake! I am sorry to reveal this, but the love triangle, just like wrestling, was all for show and entertainment. I do have to say though, that Earley […]

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The first artistic decision that Goethe made in the writing of The Sorrows of Young Werther was certainly the choice to write the story as a series of letters. An author makes a very deliberate choice to write an epistolary novel. Writing in the form of personal letters from the voice of the main character provides an […]

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What to Make of Werther

The best part of reading The Sorrows of Young Werther is most definitely the character’s voice.  In very little time at all one can easily grasp his personality: melodramatic, immature, unstable, but interesting.  Immature narrators generally irritate and bore me yet, in spite of some serious cringing and eye-rolling at Werther’s actions (and overuse of […]

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Werther is a Drama Queen

The narrator in The Sorrows of Young Werther is very overdramatic. His mood swings leave large gaps to be filled in by the reader. He first appears to be a very relaxed individual, taking time to paint and read. He soon becomes extremely infatuated with Lotte and he abandons his work, because he can do […]

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The Sorrows of Young Werther

 The choice of Goethe to write in the first person enables the reader to make a connection with the main character, Werther.  Goethe also formatted his novel into letters which also brings the reader closer to Werther.  The letters make it easy to connect with Werther as it is easy to understand what he is […]

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Sorrows of Young Werther

What I found most interesting in the book The Sorrows of Young Werther were Goethe’s use of characters. Goethe had his title character and main characters, of course, and they all played an important part in the development of the story. What I admired, however, was how Goethe used the secondary characters to make a […]

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Well… that was Honest

Sturm and Drang                 Some people try very hard to be perfect, emotionally stoic, reserved, polite. Other people are very –in truth, there is no one grandiose word. Other people just are. They revel in youthful passion. They flail about, all grace and art and passion: such is Werther. I have to say, Goeth is […]

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Tragic Love

The narrative perspective that Goethe chose for “The Sorrows of Young Werther” was not a typical first person narrative.  The majority of the story was told through a sequence of letters written by Werther to his close friend Wilhelm.  This narrative allowed the reader to understand Werther’s sorrows and his feelings of happiness. The reader […]

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Sorrows of Young Werther

I found The Sorrows of Young Werther troubling because Werther was such an unreliable narrator, which is frustrating, but at the same time it makes him more relatable. Goethe very effectively captured the torment that Werther is in. One letter in particular that comes to mind is August 10, 1771. He says: “Albert, who doesn’t disturb my happiness […]

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