Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Reading Blog

Nathaniel Hawthorne touches on many key points in his work, The Birthmark, the relationship of Georgiana and Aylmer, how a single birthmark taints their love; and the symbolism of the birthmark all add many layers to this story.
The relationship of Georgiana and Aylmer all revolves around Georgiana’s birthmark: a tiny handprint small enough to be covered by two fingers on Georgiana’s check. Aylmer is a man of science and yet he is a man of love. It is not hard to combine the two into a harmonious relationship, but Aylmer is having difficulty finding balance. The story has a certain attitude that science and love cannot be combined, almost like science and faith often contradict one another. One can even go as far to say that Aylmer is somewhat of a devil figure, or one that is influenced by the devil and perfection, and Georgiana is an angel. Aylmer, playing the part of an individual influenced by the devil, sees Georgiana how perfect she is, similar to the perfection of his work in his laboratory, and then is disgusted by her birthmark, which in the end of the story symbolizes Georgiana’s life and love for Aylmer. The adversities seen in this relationship is much like the constant battle of faith that we ourselves go through. The battle of perfection throughout college, to strive and never be satisfied with meritocracy; but we never realize that what we are given is just enough. What we are given in life will get us through our troubles, there is no need to change, like Georgiana there is no need to change her appearance, she is beautiful with the birthmark.
Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s story The Yellow Wallpaper has a more deranged message than Nathaniel Hawthorne’s story. There are some similarities within the two stories, for one the relationship of husband and wife is not following the norm of society. In The Birthmark there is the issue of imperfections, and in The Yellow Wallpaper there is a lack of love between the wife and husband. The wife and husband’s relationship is not a loving relationship; it is more a patient to doctor connection. The status of the wife is not aiding in the closeness of their relationship, there is something mentally wrong with her. She is being driven crazy by the yellow wallpaper in the house. She says there is a woman trapped in the walls, that woman symbolizes her, she is feeling trapped in her own environment and cannot escape; until the last night of her stay when the woman finally comes out of the wall and joins the wife. The end of the story now reunites body and mind, when the woman in the walls comes out and joins the wife.
William Wordsworth’s I wandered Lonely as a Cloud has many literary devices used throughout the poem. For instance there is a rhyme scheme of a b a b c c. The rhyme scheme adds a sense of feeling of uniform throughout the poem. The constant rhyme scheme creates a beat to which the words are formed on. The tone of the poem does feel somewhat airy, as clouds, and the use of similes add airy, like clouds, comparisons.

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