Tag Archives: Yusif A


21 Apr

 In a general sense, absurdism is a philosophical element that addresses the people’s problem in searching for sense of their own life in contrast to the lack of it’s meaning.

In philosophy, “The Absurd” refers to the conflict between people’s inability to seek the real meaning in life. It does not mean “logically impossible”, it’s more “humanly impossible”.

Absurdism is not created by the universe and the human mind separately but rather it arises from the two existing together at the same time.

Therefore, Absurdism is a “philosophical school of thought” that states that the people’s effort of finding the true meaning of life will ultimately fail and therefore be “absurd”. Because such meanings don’t exist at least in relation to the individual.

Absurdism also looks at the nature of the Absurd and how individuals react to it once aware of it. Absurdism has its origins in the 19th century Danish philosopher Soren Kierkegaard. It was born of the European existentialist movement that ensued when the French Algerian philosopher and writer Almus Camus rejected certain aspects from that philosophical line of thought and published his manuscript “The Myth of Sisyphus”. Absurdism developed especially in France after World War 1.

Perfection: Social Structure

9 Mar
Statue showing the average soviet man and woman wielding a hammer and sickle

The cover of a famous documentary by Michael Moore "Capitalism: A Love Story"

              Socialism mounted to power in Russia after forcing the Tsarist regime into abdication. Russia was lagging behind all industrial powers of Europe in production of goods. Socialism seemed as the perfect discipline which could eradicate the humongous gap between Russia’s potential and actual production. Socialism in theory is a political discipline in which all resources in a society are shared equally and all members of that society are equal and work together to achieve a set goal. The creators of basic ideas of socialism, Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, had presumed that if this system would be put into practice it would perfect society. If implied without alteration socialism aimed to improve living standards, abolish differences in social status to perfect society in the long run.

               During the years when the Socialist Party had established the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, equality was regarded as perfection. The equality of all members of society men women, as well as different nations within the USSR borders was regarded as an essential factor to Soviet success. Social issues could be resolved this way leading to political stability and economic growth, which was mainly the reason for such advertisement and provision of equality. The Soviet advertisement or propaganda was so powerful that all members of this communist society believed that equality was the perfect social status which had been achieved in the USSR.

               One may consider Socialism and Capitalism as complete opposites. Despite that there have been points in History when these systems have been extremely similar in practice; the theories are opposite. The extreme contrast can be seen in the inequality which the Capitalist system causes. The socialist system can be seen as all socialist men and women of different nations as equal workers with equal rations. On the other hand the capitalist photo shows a man hiding a sack of money and disguising himself as a patriot by waving a small American flag. This shows the corruptibility and inequality which the capitalist system has led to in some cases. This is exactly what most of the general Soviet population believed.

               Thus leading back into the idea of perfection one can see that during the reign of Vladimir Lenin perfection in the Soviet republics, for example Azerbaijan was seen as equality. While today capitalism is considered as the perfect system because of its victory over communism, and the fact that it has adapted through years of tough mending to be the most sophisticated social system. Although one would like to conclude by saying that it is average human behavior to ruin perfect equality, and systems which restrict such behavior lead to failure. Thus a perfect social structure where all members of society are equal is impossible to achieve.

Speech Therapy

8 Mar

               Speech therapy is treatment for pronunciation and language disorders. One can be diagnosed with such a disorder due to an inability of producing certain sounds or inability of constructing sentences of one’s own.  Demand for speech therapy rose sharply in the turn of the century, more specifically 1890 to 1920. This rise was mainly due to four reasons.

                Primarily, what led to a desire for speech therapy was the increased awareness of what communication is, and what problems miscommunication caused. The general populations in Europe were starting to realize that speech was one of the most important factors in their life. After seeing the atrocities of WWI presumably all Europeans had felt the grave problems miscommunication caused. Secondly, changing population demographics in Europe, especially the most industrialized countries such as Britain or France communication became extremely important. Thirdly technological and social advances who almost everyone wanted to know about. Education was developing and to develop with trends and breakthroughs the general population of Europe had to perfect their communication abilities. Another relatively small factor is that many soldiers fighting in WWI had speech disabilities due to the use of poison gas during the war. Soldiers who wanted to recover their pre-war speech abilities appealed to Speech and Language Pathologists. Finally, the mere expansion of speech therapy services led to a desire to perfect speech. Now Speech Language Pathologists did not only give lectures in universities but instead chose to establish clinics aiding those suffering from speech disabilities.

Dramatic Monologue in Poetry

25 Feb

A dramatic monologue is “a piece of performed writing that offers great insight into the speaker’s feelings.” The monologue is usually presented by the poet’s creation of a fictional character, more commonly called a “persona”. Usually, this persona expresses a point of view, based on existing knowledge from past experiences, not necessarily shared by the poet. The monologue gives insight into the poem via a specific excerpt. This form of poetry was very common during the Victorian era, for instance in Dover Beach, Ulysses and My Last Duchess. Robert Browning, the poet of My Last Duchess, is considered the “master” of this form of poetry.

In terms of how a dramatic monologue works, when the speaker is presenting his/her thoughts and feelings, what is not said is just as important as what is mentioned. The audience plays a great role in understanding the intended meaning of the poem by paying attention to what was not mentioned. Usually in such pieces of writing, the speaker deliberately omits analysis, and instead, emphasizes certain points to evoke certain feelings. In order to fully grasp the concept of the poem, one should consider the occasion, the targeted audience, the speaker’s state of mind, and what tactics the speaker uses to express his/her point.

In Summary:

  1. Performed Writing -> insight into the speakers feelings through the development of  a character or persona.
  2. What is NOT said -> like “reading between the lines”
  3. Usually just an excerpt rather than the whole poem. Is this true for My Last Duchess? ->One part gives insight, the rest is general
  4. Speaker and poets views are not shared.

Levi’s Intertextual Reference to Inferno Canto XXVI

25 Nov

While Primo Levi aids Jean in his task to carry the soup rations to the kitchen Jean appeals to Levi to teach him some Italian. During the course of their long journey from the well to the kitchen, Primo attempts to teach Jean, a French Haeftling Italian. Throughout their conversation Primo is repeatedly seen to refer to Dante’s “Inferno”, thus referring to Homer’s “Ulysses”.

                Levi clarifies “I have to tell in prose – a sacrilege” meaning that he is paraphrasing the Ulysses. Levi considers the Ulysses a scene under God which shouldn’t be translated or paraphrased. Levi also explains why he is paraphrasing by stating “I have only rescued two lines, but they are worth stopping for.” Levi introduces the idea that he does not remember exactly the lines of the “Inferno” and obviously does not have access to it.

                Primarily Primo to the XXVI Canto of the “Inferno” because it is following climax where action falls and Ulysses is sent to hell. During the stages Levi’s adaptation to the camp he states “It is not possible to sink any lower than this; no human condition is more miserable than this, nor could it conceivably be so.” Signifying Levi’s degeneration into hell, and Levi later through his life in the camp refers to Dante’s “Inferno”. Replacing himself with Ulysses Primo rescues a few lines which he can remember from the “Inferno”, “Consider ye the seed from which ye sprang; Ye were not made to live like unto brutes, But for pursuit of virtue and of knowledge.”

                In general Levi refers to Ulyseus of Dante because Ulyseus has descended into hell and then ascended above all those who have caused him to sink. This foreshadows that Primo Levi will escape the horrors of the camp alive and live a prosperous life following his departure.