The Purpose of this Blog
Your task on this blog is to write a brief summary of what we learned in class today. Include enough detail so that someone who was ill or missed the lesson can catch up with what they missed. Over the course of the term, these 'class scribe' posts will grow to be a guide book for the course, written by students for students.
With each post ask yourself the following questions:
1) Is this good enough for our guide book?
2) Will your post enable someone who wasn't here to catch up?
3) Would a graphic/video/link help to illustrate what we have learned??xml:namespace>
Wednesday, 10 October 2012
We looked at different explanations of the word uncanny and from these we tried to understand the word in our own way. These included:
*The barrier between the known and the unknown
*Familiar and foreign (teetering on the brink)
*A feeling of unfamiliarity and uncertainty
*The uncanny of the monumental
*The heimlich: homely and the unheimlich: unhomely
We also had to comment on the view that Wuthering Heights is filled with uncanny and disturbing occurences.
Sunday, 30 September 2012
Tuesday, 25 September 2012
We began by thinking about how the characters and readers see Lockwood, as well as how he sees himself.
- poor judgement
- self centred
- self centred
- romantic hero
- good at making judgements
We then focused on an article titled 'Asking questions and telling tales.' This consisted of similarities between both Lockwood and and Nick Carraway from The Great Gatsby. From this article we established that both Wuthering Heights and The Great Gatsby start with narrators who enter the story in medias res (in the middle of things) and both have to learnt to see the present in terms of the past.We made notes for each of the different sections within the article.
- Limited vision and romantic experience, lack of knowledge.
- 'The stirring atmosphere of the town.'
- 'Im of the busy world and to its arms I must return.'
Observing the Hero:
- Narrator stumbles upon a fiercely passionate and committed man who stands in complete contrast to him
- Narrators drawn into the affairs of main characters, becoming go-betweens and an audience
- Heathcliff's behaviour switches between being moody and being friendly
- Lockwood is condescending and judgemental, yet touched
Rumour and Lies:
- Lockwood is dependent on other people's narratives to understand Heathcliff
- Heathcliff is 'rough as a saw-edge, and hard as whinstone'
- Despite regarding herself as 'one sensible soul' Nelly does behave both deviously and unsympathetically
- The version Lockwood hears of Heathcliff's life is coloured by the prejudice of Nelly
- Mystified rather than clarified, readers question the evidence given
Poor Men, Rich Women:
- Subjects of these speculations have poor and obscure origins
- Main character falls in love with woman socially out of his reach
- Narrators do not use their secure situations to commit themselves to loving a woman
The Morality of Narration:
- Moral certainty is shaken
- We are fascinated by those who take risks and stake everything to get what they want
- Heathcliff is in love with a dream that is unattainable
- If narrator is taken away the story tends to degenerate into melodrama
We then looked at four different extracts, two from Nelly and two from Lockwood. We annotated them to find what vocabulary, sentence structures, punctuation and tones the two narrators use, and what effect their linguistic choices have on the narrative voice.
- Standard English
- Complex and Compound sentences
- A wide variety of punctuation
- Polite, certain, concerned
- She sounds clued up and in some cases, rather wise
- High frequency vocab
- Long sentences
- A lack of punctuation
- Much of his narration consists of his feelings and thoughts
Homework: Produce two paragraphs commenting on Nelly Vs. Lockwood's narrative style. Focus on the following; vocab, syntax, punctuation, tone and effect of language on narrative.
Saturday, 22 September 2012
Sunday, 16 September 2012
we spoke at great length of the many features of a Gothic and the rank at which we thought them present in Wuthering Heights out of ten (these are my scores not the result of the entire classes):
Medieval architecture - isolated land 7/10
complex narrative - prolix 10/10
Death or bloody imagery 10/10
binary opposition 8/10
byronic hero 9/10
we spoke briefly on the idea of Heathcliff being the byronic hero, which is the idea of a "bad boy" (as Mr Sadgrove put it) being the ultimate hero, showing how wrong can ultimately be enticing to the reader and to other characters in the story.
our next task, writing a blurb in which Wuthering heights is portrayed as a Gothic book or a love story, highlighted how even our description was littered with certain Gothic tropes. "The moors" were often described as dark, lonely or isolated when in the Gothic genre, whereas in the love story genre, i found that i did not mention the moors, but i focused more on character relationships and actions.
homework was to:
1. re-read chapter 1
2.What impression do we get of our narrator
3. What Gothic elements can we identify in this chapter.
4. Draw Wuthering heights and label with evidence from the text.