Archive by Author

The Pygmalion Myth

9 Mar

In Greek mythology, Pygmalion was a king of the island of Cyprus and a sculptor. He spent many years carving an ivory statue of a woman more beautiful than any living female.
Pygmalion became fascinated by his sculpture and fell in love with it. He pretended it was an actual woman. He brought it presents and treated it as if it were alive. However, the statue could not respond to his attentions, and Pygmalion became miserable. Finally, he prayed to Aphrodite, the goddess of love, to bring him a woman like his statue. Aphrodite did even better. She brought the statue to life. Pygmalion married this woman, often called Galatea, who gave birth to a daughter (some versions of the story say the child was a boy).

Perfection And Flaw: Feminine Beauty

9 Mar

1.The woman shown in this picture, Audrey Hepburn represents perfection in feminine beauty. What makes her perfect, is her elegance and most importantly her charm. Her charm consists in her insecurities that made her seem perfect. Her natural beauty, and the ultra feminine ways of acting and presenting herself in public made her the ultimate icon of beauty and perfection. Her perfection lays in her natural, charming, sophisticated and womanly wise character; her beauty is as if radiated from inside. As an actress, the roles she played were always of innocent, sophisticated young women. And even if she played a so called “call girl” in one of her movies, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, her elegance and girlish charm made her restless and short tempered character transform itself into a kind hearted innocent young woman in the eyes of the audience.

2. The opposite of feminine beauty in terms of perfection is illustrated in this picture. She is the complete opposite of Audrey Hepburn as she does not possess her qualities. First major difference is her fake looks. Her wish to be “perfect”, only made her seem so unperfect and unattractive. She does not possess that elegance and feminine side that Hepburn posseses. This makes her look more masculine and not pleasant to look at.

3. This image of a fawn represents beauty in a different context. Even though it is not of a human, this fawn shows its gentle and innocent and natural self. This is what makes it beautiful and pleasant to look at. Just as feminine beauty, Audrey Hepburn, it’s gentleness and innocence makes it perfect.

William Cowper: biography

4 Mar

William Cowper
• In 1763 he suffered a complete nervous breakdown because he worried about an examination
• After several attemps at suicide he was commited to a sanatorium
• Cowper spent his life under the care of some friends and patrons.
• In particular Mrs.Mary Unwin, an evangelical clergyman John Newton, and Cowper’s cousin Lady Hesketh
• His mental breakdowns were generally characterized by severe religious gloom and often by a sense that he was irrevocably damned.
• Most significant of his work was done in the last 2 decades of his life
• In 1783 he composed “John Gilpin’s ride” which is probably the most famous of his works
• In 1783 Cowper began his curious long poem The Task which starts with a mock-elevated disquisition on the historical evolution of the sofa from the three-legged stool. It then treats a big amount of multitutde of descriptive and reflective subjects and is probably Cowper’s most typical poem. In it quiet meditation is mingled with atmospheric description of simple rural life and natural scenes

His early isolation and the belief that he was damned connects to the poem. Elements from his hardships when growing up can be seen in the poem “The Castaway”. His early loss of his mother might have resulted in his belief that he was alone. In “the castaway” he is being left alone by his friends, “They left their outcast mate behind”.His early childhood experience might be the result of his melancholic nature. When he says “When such a destined wretch as I” he might imply to his “damned” self he believed he was. He also refers to love, even if not meant for a woman in the poem.“He loved them both, but both in vain”. His love for his cousin was great however In vain because her father did not allow them to marry because of his concern for Cowper’s mental instability.”Nor him beheld, nor her again” “her”, in between the lines he might be referring to the fact that he never saw his cousin again. Because the “the castaway” is a poem about isolation, and he believed that he was isolated as he was raised without a mother and was sent to a sanatorium at an early age because of his several attemps at suicide. The only people he lived with were Mrs.Mary Unwin, an evangelical clergyman John Newton who impacted his writing in terms of implying religion and evangecalism, and his cousin Lady Hesketh.

Response to “Hawk Roosting” by Ted Hughes

4 Feb

                 The poem “Hawk Roosting” written by Ted Hughes discusses the power and the superiority of a Hawk from the animal’s own perspective. His writing in 1st person as a hawk compares and personifies the life of a human. In lines “I kill where I please because it is all mine” the hawk compares his own savage nature to the egoistic character of a human being. This is also seen in the lines when he says “No arguments assert my right”. Here he presents his supreme power over other animals, as he says that no arguments will be able to diminish his superior rights.

                The author uses anthropomorphosis  to humanize the hawk. This is shown in the lines where the hawk’s body parts are described as “feet and head” as if the hawk is indeed a human. This connotation can be seen in the lines “Between my hooked head and hooked feat”. The author also uses imagery in the lines “I sit in the top of the wood, my eyes closed”. “My eyes closed” highlights the arrogant nature of the hawk in a more coherent manner, as the eyes closed show that he doesn’t fear or care about anything but himself. As if he is being unaware of the environment around him, and yet this factor does not displease his character. More of his arrogant nature can be seen in the lines “It took the whole of Creation, to produce my foot, my each feather, Now I hold creation in my foot”. The hawk shows how he thinks of himself as a superior creation, because it took the whole world “the whole Creation” to produce one animal such as him. It is interesting how the author chose to capitilize the world “Creation”, it being a simile to the word “World”. By capitilizing this word he shows how powerful and magnificent it is. And it also shows how even more superior the hawk is if it takes this whole powerful “Creation” to create this one animal.

‘Ikemefuna described as an ill-fated lad’

6 Oct

In the book ‘Things Fall Apart’ Chinua Achebe describes Ikemefuna as an ‘ill fated lad’. Behind the meaning of this description lie different literary elements that pay a great significance to the book, in general.

Before the author describes Ikemefuna in this manner, he writes about Okonkwo’s reputation and youth. He says, referring to Okonkwo, ‘He was a wealthy farmer and had two barns full of yams, and had just married his third wife’. By saying these words, the author wants to show Okonkwo as a man who earned his good reputation by hard work and not family wealth. He also writes ‘And so although Okonkwo was still young, he was already one of the greatest men of his time’ meaning that age was not the problem for him to succeed in life. ‘As the elders said, if a child washed his hands he could eat with kings’, by stating this proverb, the author means that being one of those boys who ‘washed their hands’, Okonkwo believed that he himself, could treat anyone in this manner if they ‘washed their hands’. He compares and contrasts Okonkwo’s youth against Ikemefuna’s who is later on described as an ‘ill fated lad’. Behind the description of Ikemefuna as an ‘ill fated lad’ lies foreshadowing which shows the readers that the fate of Ikemefuna is not fortunate, and there will be some event later on in the book that will prove the description right. As well as foreshadowing, the words ‘ill fated’ are a metaphor. ‘ill fated’ if translated correctly means a fate that is ill, therefore unfortunate.

Even though the passage where Ikemefuna is described is short, there lies a lot of significance that affects the book as a whole. If the readers would not have read those lines saying ‘the ill-fated’ lad, they would most likely not predict anything unusual happening to him in the future. And because this line foreshadows the coming of Ikemefuna’s unfortunate fate, the readers pay more attention to the way Okonkwo treats Ikemefuna later on in the book. They see how Okonkwo treats him like his own son, and for the first time it is seen that Okonkwo becomes interested in something more than simply power and physical strength.