Tag Archives: Class

Class review

I just wanted to comment on the class in general. I feel as if the content of the class was on track with other Interpretation of Literature courses based off of what I heard from friends who were  enrolled in the same course, but with a different teacher.

I agree with everyone else in the class that Pinterest was of no use, only because there was no extension to it. I believe that if he had some sort of alternative assignment, which incorporated Pinterest, then it would have made it more useful. On the basis of blogs, I would of made a few things differently. For example, as pointed out in class, maybe make half as many blogs but twice as long. Along those same lines, instead of being able to blog about anything, there could be a set topic that everyone has to write about. In addition, everyone should make their blog posts just a draft so others can’t see it and copy their ideas until the due date. So, the due date could be at the end of the week on Friday as an example and after this point everyone can make their blogs visible. Then people could see others and would be welcome to comment on theirs just as we did this semester. Another minor change that I would recommend for the books we read is, don’t get rid of Henry James’s novel totally, but just replace it with a similar novel that touches on the same subject. Other than that, overall the class and its objectives seemed reasonable.

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Caged Consciousness

Stream of consciousness – describes the continuous flow of sensations, impressions, images, memories and thoughts experienced by mind; generally colored and inflected by each person’s subjectivity.

The telgraph girl comes from a rough past, about which we are given few details. Her desire to live among the upper-class is what makes her remain at her current job. She reads the messages sent by Captain Everard and Lady Bradeen to feel connected to their social cirlce. However, he only means of connection is by reading the abbreviated messages sent by telegram.

Along with the telegram, much like text messaging, people developed their own short-hand ways of delivering messages with the least amount of text. It is the ambiguity with which she reads the telegraphs that spark her interest, although she cannot be sure if her interpretations of the messages are accurate.

William Jame’s definition of the flow of consciousness is set-up in Henry Jame’s development of the telegraph girl. Her experiences in the past are very different that that of the upper-class people with whom she wishes to belong. When this is paired with the un-clear messages that girl reads,leads to very subjective interpretation about what she see, reads, and thinks about the people sending the messages. Her own desires, ideas, and thoughts shape the whole story she watches in her head while reading the captain’s messages.

I think this sets up a great deal of missinterpretation that will eventually lead to the climactic point of the novel. Her own desire to become connected with those outside her “cage” and her suspicion of dishonesty among the outsiders will likely lead to her making a change in her consciousness, driving her to reach out to Lady Bradeen, perhaps. Any Predictions?

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“Imaginative Life”

In our last class we discussed how social status is an important theme in this book. This got me thinking about this one passage I read the night before. I went back and looked at the previous chapters in search of this. To my surprise I found that James gives us many clues about this theme in his writing.  When the telegraph girl talks about Mrs. Jordan she says, “She was perfectly aware that her imaginative life was the life in which she spent most of her time.”  Through this line James tells us that even though Mrs. Jordan is not part of the high class, she still likes to believe so. She spends most of her time around this environment because of her job as a florist; given this, she finds herself sharing experiences and talking about this false reality. Every time she comes into the post office she tells the telegraph girl all this magnificent stories about her job. She tries to make herself seem of a higher class, when in reality she is in the same working class as the telegraph girl.

I feel that Mrs. Jordan and the telegraph girl are both very similar. Early in the passage James states, “Mrs. Jordan… was the only member of her circle in whom she recognized an equal.” In this line, he expresses how the telegraph girl associates herself with Mrs. Jordan. This being said I feel that there is a deeper meaning to this. They are both similar in the sense that they both vicariously live through the life of these higher class people. They both live in this false reality. This is ultimately why the telegraph girl didn’t want to move from Mayfair to Chalk Farm to be with Mr. Mudge.  I think that this false reality that the telegraph girl lives through is eventually worth more to her than being close to her fiance.

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