AD's English Literature : October 2015

Critical Appreciation on the Theme and Style of Joseph Addison’s essay, “A vision of Justice”: Visionary Judgment of the Goddess of Justice




“In the mean time the world was in an alarm, and all the inhabitants of it gathered together upon a spacious plain; so that I seemed to have all the species before
my eyes. A voice was heard from the clouds, declaring the intention of this visit, which was to restore and appropriate to everyone living what was his due. The fear and hope, joy and sorrow, which appeared in that great assembly after this solemn declaration, are not to be expressed.” A Vision of Justice by Joseph Addison

A Vision of Justice by Joseph Addison is thematically complex, with much material to argue about. The most disputable theme or concept may be the implication of inevitability disclosed at the end of the essay: the reality of judgment.  A Vision of Justice, however, is a delightful essay which has neatness, lucidity and precision of expression. Its style is highly polished and cultivated. There is spontaneity and ease in it. It is written in a familiar and elegant manner. Here we observe delightful plasticity of language too. Its prose is smooth and elegant in manner and obviously highly refined. True to Joseph Addison’s style, A Vision of Justice is very delightful and pleasant. The sentences are embellished and polished. Their movement is smooth and brisk. Less ornamental and ornate, the ideas are expressed clearly and vividly. The essay reveals clarity of ideas. It has compact and dignified expression. The forceful, fluent and impressive essay has charm and freshness of its own.

Analysis of Anton Chekhov’s 'A Marriage Proposal': Great Economic Security Takes Precedence over Romance and Love; What Keeps Together and Binding?— Defining the Institution of Marriage



"I must live a well regulated life.  I have a weak heart, continual pappitations, and I am very sensitive and always getting excited...But the worst of all is sleep! I hardly lie down and begin to doze before....I jump up like a madman, walk about a little, and lie down again.... And so it is all night long!"
-Ivan Vassilievich Lomov in Anton Chekhov’s A Marriage Proposal

  Anton Chekhov’s one act play A Marriage Proposal is not thoroughly anti romantic like that of G. B. Shaw’s Arms and the Man. In Shaw’s case it was practicality and good judgment preceding over romance and love, here in Chekhov’s A Marriage Proposal economic security takes precedence over romance and love. Even though Russia is the primary setting, it can be anywhere in the world, and the home can be the case of any household history. Read More Drama Ivan Vassilievich Lomov is no superhuman Bluntschli, and Natalia is no sweet sixteen of Riana. But they are representative of every man, every couple in the world of families.

Thoreau’s ‘Civil Disobedience’: Views Government as a Fundamental Hindrance to the Creative Enterprise of the People



                                                                                                      
“I heartily accept the motto, “That government is best which governs least”; and I should like to see it acted up to more rapidly and systematically. Carried out, it finally amounts to this, which also I believe,—”That government is best which governs not at all”; and when men are prepared for it, that will be the kind of government which they will have. Government is at best but an expedient; but most governments are usually, and all governments are sometimes, inexpedient. The objections which have been brought against a standing army, and they are many and weighty, and deserve to prevail, may also at last be brought against a standing government. The standing army is only an arm of the standing government. The government itself, which is only the mode which the people have chosen to execute their will, is equally liable to be abused and perverted before the people can act through it. Witness the present Mexican war, the work of comparatively a few individuals using the standing government as their tool; for in the outset, the people would not have consented to this measure.” - Thoreau’s ‘Civil Disobedience’
                                     - Henry David Thoreau in ‘Civil Disobedience’

Introduction:
Writers such as Henry David Thoreau in ‘Civil Disobedience’ (also known by the title “Resistance to Civil Government”) along with Herman Melville in ‘Bartleby the Scrivener’, suggest that democracy can actually oppress and restrict the individual. Thoreau views government as a fundamental hindrance to the creative enterprise of the people it purports to represent. Read More Criticism  

Theme of Incarnation in John Milton’s Paradise Lost and Tulsidasa's Ramcharitmanas: Comparative Study the Philosophy of Incarnation in the Orient and the Occident



 Introduction: John Milton’s Paradise Lost and Tulsidasa's Ramcharitmanas enjoys a magical cast of characters including one mournful king-man, an inarticulate but athletic scarecrow devil, a chattering spiritual, two apprentice enchanters, many headstrong leaders, and a host of others. The Wizard Satan is, of course, one of the major characters, as is the determined Rama hater, who proves by the end of the story to be both his match and his mate. Read More Criticism Myth the fire demon and the Ravana of the far, furlong round out the central foursome, and it is through their intervention that Satan and Rama originally come—and eventually remain—together by the voice of incarnation.

Criitical Summary of Shelley’s A Defence of Poetry: Philosophical Assumptions about Poets and Poetry



“Poetry is the record of the best and happiest moments of the happiest and best minds.”
Percy Bysshe Shelley (1792 - 1822)
English poet.
A Defence of Poetry

The unfinished critical work A Defence of Poetry (written 1821; published 1840) by P. B. Shelley is minutely skillful. The justly celebrated A Defence of Poetry by P. B. Shelley was originally written, as its title suggests, in a polemic vein, as an answer to Peacock's The Four Ages of Poetry. In this essay, written a year before his death, as earlier said, Shelley addresses  The Four Ages of Poetry,  a witty magazine piece by his friend, Thomas Love Peacock. Read More Romantic   Period Peacock’s work teases and jokes through its definitions and conclusions, specifically that the poetry has become valueless and redundant in an age of science and technology, and that intelligent people should give up their literary pursuits and put their intelligence to good use. Shelley takes this treatise and extends it, turning his essay into more of a rebuttal than a reply. In its published form, much of the controversial matter was cast out, and only one or two indications remain of its controversial nature. The essay as it stands is among the most eloquent expositions that exist of the ideal nature and essential value of poetry. Its chief distinction lies in the sincerity and enthusiasm of the author. Read More Romantic   Period

In What Way does the Mother Tongue Interfere in the Learning of a Foreign Language?



 Mother Tongue interferes in the teaching of foreign language in a number of ways. When a child learns his mother tongue there is no other language getting in the way but when he learns a foreign language (F.L) the habits of his mother tongue conflicts with those of the foreign tongue. Read More Teaching English (TEFL)  This conflict arises in all areas viz sounds, structures and vocabulary.

The distances of languages  is to be looked for—( 1 ) in pronunciation, or the ways of speaking the same words by different peoples; (2) in the vocabulary, or the use of the same words to express the same ideas in different languages ; (3) in grammatical structure, or the ways in which words are put together to make sentences. Read More Teaching English (TEFL)  So that in two languages we shall find that letters and words are pronounced rather differently, but that the words used are mostly the other, and that there is so much difference in the grammar—that is, in their ways of showing genders, numbers, and cases of nouns, or voices, moods, tenses, numbers, and persons of verbs, and of linking and arranging words and sentences. Thus, if we take mother tongue (SL) with that of English we find showing difference at its greatest and likeness at its least. Read More Teaching English (TEFL)  

Jonathan Swift’s "Gulliver’s Travels" is a timeless creation: Is This Really a Children’s Book?




 “I found how the World had been misled by prostitute Writers, to ascribe the greatest Exploits in War to Cowards, the wisest Counsel to Fools, Sincerity to Flatterers, Roman Virtue to Betrayers of their Country, Piety to Atheists, Chastity to Sodomites, Truth to Informers.” Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels Part III

Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels is a timeless creation. George Orwell considered it to be one of the finest five works of world literature. Gulliver’s Travels resembles Daniel Defoe’s Robinson Crusoe. But it is not merely an adventurous travel tale. It is more than that. The creator had some basic viewpoints about life. He makes it dear that he will advocate his unbiased view of life in the guise of some exciting story. The obvious source of attraction of the book is its rich humour. Read More Novel It is written in a technique of a science fiction. But the most striking feature of the tale is the satire inherent in the different situations of life. He worked very hard with this book not only to parody travel writing (Robinson Crusoe had just been published about the time that Swift began serious work on Gulliver’s Travels), and to satirize the politics of his age, but to point out human folly in many forms. In the original work Gulliver has undertaken four journeys. The interesting are the two— Gulliver’s journey to the land of Lilliput and to the land of Brobdingnag. Read More Novel Through these two journeys the narrator presents two contrasting views of life. He has seen humanity from two different angles. As a physically superior being he sees mankind as ridiculously small. Again, as an inferior human being he finds human race as ‘grotesquely’ large. Now, through these two different sets of experiences Gulliver’s character changes and progresses into wider shapes.

Rabindranath Tagore’s Perceptive and Insightful Essay ‘Modern Poetry’: Thematic Analysis



“Everything comes to us that belong to us if we create the capacity to receive it.” - Rabindranath Tagore

Rabindranath Tagore’s perceptive and insightful essay ‘Modern Poetry’ was written long before either  the emergence of what we call to the post modernist trends, or even the application of the term ‘modern’ trends initialed in the 20th century English literature by writers like T.S. Eliot. We call T.S. Eliot a modernist today. But Tagore would naturally have been unfamiliar with the term. In any case, among the modernist poets, only Eliot is Tagore’s concern in his essay is to define the term ‘modern’ and indicate its limit, he first deals with the question of relativity which is always implied by the term. The term is in fact semantically mobile and in general sense, modern poetry is something that progresses in company with and at the speed of the years: the last year’s modern is not this year’s. Tagore realizes the problem where he says that the poetry of the great Romantics of the 19th century must have seemed ‘modern’ to their contemporariness because it was so complexly new and such a great departure from the past. Aqua when the Victorians replaced the Romantics there was a similar shift in the implications of the term ‘modern’. However; as we know the Victorian poetry was in its important respect, just a continuation of the romantic poetry. What is more pertinent is Tagore’s point that with the turn of the century Victorianism became absolute. 

William Shakespeare’s The Comedy of Errors: Repeated Instances of Mistaken Identity of the Two Pairs of Twins


“Am I in earth, in heaven, or in hell?
Sleeping or waking? mad or well advised?
Known unto these, and to myself disguised!
I'll say as they say, and persever so,
And in this mist at all adventures go” ---ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE

The Comedy of Errors (1592), play by English playwright and poet William Shakespeare,  exemplifies the common Elizabethan practice of adapting classical comedy to the contemporary stage: The plot is loosely based on the play Menaechmi of Roman dramatist Plautus, and it also borrows from his Amphitrus. The story revolves around the twins Antipholus of Ephesus and Antipholus of Syracuse, their parents, and the family’s two servants, Dromio of Ephesus and Dromio of Syracuse, who are also twins. Read More William Shakespeare  A shipwreck separates the family into two groups, leaving the mother with one son and one servant and the father with the other pair. The 'errors' of the play’s title are caused by repeated instances of mistaken identity. These are finally dispelled when the two pairs of twins meet, are properly recognized, and rejoin the other members of their families.

World of Comic Drama before William Shakespeare: Miracle Plays and Mysteries, Comic Interludes, First Fathers of English Comedies


 Introduction: Sakoontala, written by   Kalidasa in Sanskrit literature, in Old Testament, the Book of Job are splendid drama, mighty in theme. On the other hand, great writers like Aeschylus, Sophocles, and Euripides in tragedy, and Aristophanes in comedy, produced masterpieces before which the world has marveled.

 As in Greece, drama in England was its beginning a religious thing. Its oldest continuous tradition was from the mediaeval Church. Read More Drama Early in the Middle Ages the clergy and their parishioners began the habit, at Christmas, Easter and other holidays, of playing some part of the story of Christ's life suitable to the festival of the day. These plays were liturgical, and originally, no doubt, overshadowed by a choral element. But gradually the inherent human capacity for mimicry and drama took the upper hand; from ceremonies they developed into performances; they passed from the stage in the church porch to the stage in the street. 

How Can I Design a Project in Teaching English?



In the age of standardized testing and with the move toward the direct method of TEFL for the majority of Indian subcontinent, the driving question for many teachers is: “How can I best prepare my students to meet these demands?” While teaching content area teachers feel the most impact, with math and English Language Arts being the most scrutinized, direct method of TEFL makes it the responsibility of all teachers to ensure our initial learners are meeting proficient and advanced standards. One of the best ways to share the responsibility for direct method of TEFL is for teachers to design interdisciplinary Project Based Learning units. In addition to serving as an authentic purpose for the TEFL skills in the Direct method of TEFL , LEARNING METHODOLOGY, no matter what content area is the focus, promotes the acquisition of critical thinking skills needed by initial learners.

Analysis of William Blake's London (Songs of Innocence): The Cry of the Chimney-sweep and the Sigh of the Soldier




The opening image of wandering in London’s first lines recall the introduction to Songs of Innocence, but with a twist; we are now quite far from the piping, pastoral bard of the earlier poem: we are in the city. The poem’s title denotes a specific geographic space, not the archetypal locales in which many of the other Songs are set. Read More Romantic   Period Everything in this urban space—even the natural River Thames—submits to being “charter’d,” a term which combines mapping and legalism. Chartered Street refers to a street where freedom is guaranteed by royal charter. But here, what Blake saw speaks that there was ironical freedom in that street. Naturally, Blake’s experiences are at quite harmony / symmetry with the nature of the street. He saw that the Thames is flowing, so far being restricted by this ironical freedom. Read More Romantic   Period Even he saw signs of starvation, woe and weakness in the face of everyman. It satirically represents what kind of 18th century Blake was passing through:
“I wander thro’ each charter’d street,
Near where the charter’d Thames does flow.
And mark in every face I meet
Marks of weakness, marks of woe.”

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