The Hollow of the three hills and the symbolism of the number three

In this story written by Nathaniel Hawthorne the symbolisms of the number three is very important to the text. In his story Nathaniel uses the number three as a reference to bible. Catholisim believes in the holy trinity and all throughout the text we can see the different signs of the number three showing up, every time they speak about god. 

Also the number three is very linked to past, present and future. In the short story the protagonist wants to see the future to see how his family was affected by her actions in the past, which i found really interesting, because once again, with a different meaning, the symbolism changed drastically. Furthermore the number three was mentioned in the title. The title could be a way of foreshadowing this symbolism, but also of foreshadowing how the protagonist would want to go from the present, to the future to understand the past. 

This is the picture of the symbolism of number three:

“The lady through the looking galss” and “Habla tu espejo”

Victoria Woolf talks about the mirror being the true reflection of everybody. In this short story we are introduced to a woman called Isabella Tyson which lives alone in a house full of treasures from around the world. Although she has all this very precious things, she is a mystery, nobody knows anything about her. And she acts as someone else, only for people to like her. At the end of the story we realize that her mirror reflects  what she is inside, empty. 

This story made me remember about a song from one of my favorite bands “El cuarteto de Nos”. This song is called “Habla tu Espejo” and Roberto Musso (the author of this song) sings about the perspective of your mirror. He puts himself in the mirrors place, and he sings as if e was it. I love this song because of it lyrics. 

And i could relate it to this story a lot. The lyrics say “Veo en tu cara el barullo que impera en tu cabeza

Veo cuando la culpa supera tu vergüenza”  this lyric portrays how the mirror always knows what you are going through, and i could relate this to when Isabella was so lonely that she had to cover her life with material things to feel better. The mirror saw that, and it made an image of her that she wasnt prepared to see. The mirror knew Isabellas intentions because it watched her everyday. The mirror was the only one who truly knew her. 

Thats why i recommend this song a lot. You should listen to it, and analyses the lyrics, because they make you think a lot!

Here’s the song!

Rooms and Home is so Sad

Rooms by charlotte mew is about life, memories and melancholy. Mew portrays rooms as memories, and moments in her life. She says each room represents something about her life. So we could say that her head is a house, full of rooms, full of memories, good ones and bad ones.

 

Home is so sad, tackles the same themes as rooms. This poem is about melancholy and memories. Larkin talks about leaving his house as sad. Because he has so many memories that he doesn’t want to forget. So in a way his head is his house, and as he grew older he starts losing this memories, which is sad, and it is represented as moving out of the house.

 

So i decided that i will represent my rooms. My memories in pictures, like charlotte and Philip did.
This is my project. Each of this pictures represents a moment in my life which was important to me, and which represents a room in my house. Instead of writing about my rooms, i decided to photograph them. Each of this pictures represents an important part of my life, which has made an impact in my life deeply.

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Ode to melancholy and Ode to Sleep

When we first started analyzing this poem, the only thing I could focus was on the title of the poem. This piece of literature is called an”Ode” which means “a lyric poem, typically one in the form of an address to a particular subject, written in varied or irregular meter.”  This ode talks about melancholy, and how to deal with it. It also talks about suicidal and negative thoughts. We could say John Keats wants to advise the reader about what melancholy can cause.

As I said in the previous paragraph I was
very interested in the title of the poem, and the reason is that I knew a song that is called “Ode to Melancholy” by a band called Twenty One Pilots. This band is very particular because it has a very different sound to a lot of musicians nowadays, and they also tend to address taboo themes in their songs, like mental health issues.

This is the song:

Their song “Ode to Sleep” talks about death and depression. The songwriter of this song, Tyler Joseph, talks about bad thoughts and how when he goes to sleep a lot of his thoughts turn to demons which torment him. In Christianity, it is believed that these bad thoughts are demons. And it is also believed that demons torment people who are a threat to them. So we could say, Tyler has trouble with demons because he is an instrument of good.  
“But I’ll tell them
Why won’t you let me go?
Do I threaten all your plans?
I’m insignificant”
All throughout the song he tells god, he can’t support the torments of these demons, and he questions his existence. “Please tell them you have no plans for me
I will set my soul on fire
What have I become?
I’ll tell them”
And at the end of the song, it ends with an “I’m sorry” so he is telling God he is sorry because he has realized what his purpose in life is. He discovers that he has to spread positivity to everyone, and he has to address this issues for the world to be a better place.

I could relate this song to Keats poem because John is an instrument of good like Tyler. In his poem, Keats addresses melancholy and sadness and he tries to advise the reader how to avoid feeling sad, and how to deal with melancholic thoughts, like Tyler does in a lot of his songs.

War Poetry: Everyone Sang

The poem of Siegfried Sassoon “Everyone Sang” talks about the ending of the war and how he feels about the aftermath of it.The two stanzas are very diffrent and have contrast in between them.

Firstly when i read stanza 1 i remembered a song that Paul Mccartney made that its called “Pipes Of Peace”. This song talks about ending war, and finding peace. It talks abot teaching the younger generations that war isnt the answer. Although this song is from 1983 it is constantley linked to world war 1. I can link this song and the poem because they talk about freedom and about peace. In the poem the bird symbolises the countries after war singing a song about peace, and the quote, “As a prisoned bird must find in freedom” in my opinion, conveys how after the war peace can be free from its captivity in the war.

Here is Paul’s song:

Secondly, when i read the last stanza i remembered something that we learnt in my history class in senior 1. In stanza 2 the birds are portrayed by the triumphant countries. The quotation “and the song was wordlss; the singing will never be done” in my opinion can be portrayed as the treaty of versallies that happened after ww1. The winner countries wanted to promote peace, but by signing the treaty of versallies they were causing the hatred of Germany, which had lost. This treaty would create a very big rivalry that would last almost for 4 decades.  This treaty didnt bring peace to Europe, it brought a growing tension to the countries.

War Poetry: Dulce et Decorum est

In our second term, on our literature class, we worked with War poetry. We worked with poems like, “Dulce et Decorum est.”, “Soldier, rest!”, “Everyone sang” and “The Kiss”. Most of this poems portray how hard was life in ww1, when soldiers fought in trenches.

Firstly, i will write about the poem “Dulce et Decorum Est”. This poem was written by Wilfred Owen. This man was the most important poet of the war poetry movement.

Here i found a video of the poem being read by Christopher Eccleston, a very famous actor from the UK. I really liked this because it gives the poem a face and avoice, which makes you listen the poem in a very diffrent way.

Secondly, what i found very impresive about this poem is how Owen talks about the soldiers after war. This makes me remember what i learnt about shell shock soldiers. The quote “I saw him drowning.In all my dreams,before my helpless sight,” shows the aftermath of the war. Owen wants to portray what all soldiers live after war. They were traumatized, with physical, emotional and psychological wounds.Most of shell shocked soldiers ended up with PTSD(post traumatic stress disorder. This made them act very diffrently from the rest.

Here is a picture from a shell shock soldier:

 

The Destructors

Thes are the reading comprehension questions i did with Lola and Margui.

Rite of passage

  • An object of desire:breaking the house
  • Trespassing (defying authority)
  • Dare/challenge (construction of identity)
  • The mischief (it should be accepted and death with in a mature way)
  • Atonement (confession and regret->acceptance)

Symbols:

  • Mr Thomas’s house:
  • Mr Thomas and the children
  • Old misery
  • Money burning
  • The debris of the house
  • The laughter of the driver
  • Research and compare the Wormsley Common Gang with modern American gangs. Consider factors like membership, recruitment, enemies, activities, and motivations. What similarities did you find? What are some differences?

The Wormsley Common Gang is similar to modern American gangs as they both follow an initiation ritual when recruiting new members and they confront their enemies with violence and vandalism. However, American gangs engage in far more serious and obscure activities, such as drug trafficking and prostitution, while the kids from the gang only use vandalism. In addition, American gangs are motivated to gain wealth to live more comfortable lives, while the kids didn’t vandalise to steal money; in fact, they never stole anything. Another difference is that, when dealing with enemies, American gangs would kill them while the Wormsley Common Gang responded by vandalizing their property.

  • What do you see as the central theme of this story? Remember: a theme is not simply a subject like “love”. It is a fuller expression of what an author is trying to suggest about this subject. Write a paragraph explaining your interpretation of this story’s theme.

In our opinion, another important theme of the story is based on the “Loss of Innocence”. It is clearly shown that the group of children had lost their innocence during the story.They are children of nine years old. However, in the story it is shown that they did not lose their innocence completely since they never actually accept their mistake and the damage caused.

  • Identify three important conflicts present in the story. Explain what exactly is causing the problem—and whether they are internal or external in nature. Finally, explain which of these conflicts seems to the central problem.
  1. construction versus destruction. The gang members grew up seeing the destruction of war. They act as if destruction is a form of creation.In the story, not only the house of Old Missery was destroyed, but also the whole society after the war.The children, which are involved in the destroyed society, destroy the man’s house. Carrying out that act, it can be understand as if the children are ending with war. The house was the only thing that survived war, and destroying it means, starting all over again. The destruction of all, means the start of something new.
  1. society postwar. This external conflict points out the fact that the society was broken down after the war. Every person in society saw themselves totally affected and prejudiced by the war and tried to build up their normal lives back. However, war left an atmosphere of unconfidence, untruthful sense.

3.Building up society again would take a lot of time. belonging. This last conflict could be understood in two different ways. On the one hand, it can be understand as if T wants to belong to the gang. He is looking to fit on a group and to feel comfortable in it. That is a internal conflict since it is the character’s feeling. On the other hand, the sense of belonging could be understood to becoming part of society. At that moment in history, the society was destroyed after the war. That is why belonging to society was difficult to achieve. In our opinion, the central conflict is a combination of all of them. The war have left a destroyed society, harmful, where the people could not find their place. The destruction of the society, creates a new beginning.

  • Of what significance is the setting of this story in blitzed London? Does the story have anything to say about the consequences of war? About the causes of war?

The significance of the setting of the story is that because of London being blitzed the kids didn’t have anything to play with, because everything was destroyed. Also that the house made contrast in the neighbourhood. This particular area of the town was really damaged by the bombing of the city but Mr Thomas House was the only one that survived the bombings of London. The story talks about the consequences of war very indirectly, but it is still very relevant. The kids conduct show how war had fragmented society. After war the kids started being more violent, they had the necessity to destroy, because they had no more suffering. They were used to all the violence and sadness from war, so when it ended they kept having that mentality.

  • Describe what happens in the resolution of the story. Why might Graham Greene have ended the story in this manner?

What happens in the resolution is that they locked down Mr Misery in the bathroom cubicle and a men who had the house tied down to his lorry broke the house down. What Graham Greene wanted to do with the ending of the story is that even though war had already destructed the London what would give the last straw that broke the canela back would be the british society.

  • On the surface this is a story of action, suspense, and adventure. At a deeper level it is about delinquency, war, and the hidden forces which motivate our actions. Do you agree? Give reasons for your answer.Does the destruction of Old Misery’s house by the boys seem more senseless than the destruction brought about by the war that had destroyed London—or do you see it differently? Explain in a paragraph.

The kids are a metaphor of war and the house is a representation of London. The author wants to portray how war had destructed the society of London and how it had been damaged from the roots. The kids represent war and violence, that’s why they break the house, because the author wants to make a critic about the consequences of war in the society. The kids didn’t care about Mr misery, they only wanted destruction, which is what war represents violence destruction and hatred. And the house was london, it did not survived the “war”.

  • Research a definition of the philosophy of nihilism. How might the Wormsley Common Gang’s actions in the story demonstrate a kind of nihilism?

Nihilism is a condition in which all ultimate values lose their value. That means that traditional values and beliefs are unfounded and that existence is useless and senseless.

In our opinion, the Wormsley Common Gang represent a society post war where the nihilism is present.

Nihilism is based on a belief where conditions in the social organization are so bad as to make destruction desirable for its own sake independent of any constructive program or possibility.

That could be compared to the gang and to the society at that time.

the situation was so destroyed, that the gang finish with the destruction, they end up with the only thing that survived war to begin all over again.

They forgot about the moral values in society, because there was any value in society at that time.

War Poetry

Dulce et Decorum

Read the Poem

  1. Look for information about Wilfred Owen
  2. Characteristics of war poetry
  3. Explain each stanza with your own words
  4. Which images predominate? Quote and explain
  5. What does the title mean

 

1.Wilfred owen

 

  • Born: 18 March of 1893
  • Death: 4th November 1918

 

 

      • Fought on war world 1
      • He wrote about the horror of trenches of gas warfare
      • It’s regarded as the greatest poet of ww1
      • Influenciated by Keats and Shelley
      • Sassoon was his mentor
      • He used satire in his poems

 

2. Characteristics of war poetry

 

      • Rhetoric of honor
      • Injury

 

3. Stanzas

 

  • Stanza 1: Stanza one talks about how the soldiers lived in the trenches. They were dehumanized because they were so exhausted that they couldn’t even see the gas bomb that had fallen besides them. This is a sign that they were so tired that their scenes were prejudiced. Also their conditions were precarious.
  • Stanza 2: This stanza gives us an inside of how difficult was to survive in the war. It shows the reaction of the soldiers when a bomb was thrown at them.
  • Stanza 3: This stanza shows Owens feelings towards war, and how he was very traumatized because of the events. This is Owen talking in the “present” after the war.
  • Stanza 4: This stanza show a criticism to war, the church and the government, that made kids go to war compulsory.

 

 

4. Imageries

 

      • The imageries that predominate are the visual imageries. This show what was war and the trenches like. “Of gas-shells dropping softly behind.”

 

5. Title:

 

  • Traduction: “It is sweet and right.”

 

 

    • “It sweet and right to die for your country”

Poem Analysis

Task 1: Poem analysis

Stanza 1

  1. What is the main emotion expressed in the first stanza (verse)?

The main emotion that the first stanza portrays is suffering. It portrays how the soldiers were living in pain and precarious situations.

 

2. Write an example of a simile used in the first stanza:

“Like old beggars under sacks”

 

3. Why were the shells ‘disappointed’?

The shells were disappointed because of the situation that was happening. They were at war and the shells were disappointed of this.

 

Stanza 2

  1. How does the emotion change at the beginning of the second stanza?

In the first stanza everything is tranquil. The soldiers are very tired and complaining about their situation. But when the second stanza starts an atmosphere of terror and survival starts because the opponents are throwing gas to the soldiers so they have to escape it not to die.

 

2. What were the soldiers ‘fumbling’ for and why?

They were fumbling because the gas was thrown to them unexpectedly so they started to run to escape it. Because they were surprised by it they ran clumsily.

 

3. Owen uses a metaphor to describe what the gas looked like. Write it here:

“Under green sea”

 

Stanza 3

  1. Why do you think the third stanza is only two lines long? Think about the dramatic effect and the emotion:

This stanza is very short to emphasis how the soldier thinks about his experience in the war. He writes about how he sees one of his fellow soldiers dying because of the gas.

 

Stanza 4

  1. What is the main emotion expressed in the fourth stanza?

The main emotion expressed in the fourth stanza is criticism. In this stanza the poet invites us to have a more critical view of war and its propaganda.

    1. Name three parts of the body that are affected by this sort of gas:
  • The eyes: This gas affects the eyes by irritating them and sometimes this can end in blindness. “ white eyes writhing in his face”.

 

  • The lungs: When the gas enters the lungs they can create cancer, because of its chemical structure. When you breathe this gas you feel breathless. “froth-corrupted lungs,/Obscene as cancer,”

 

  • The tongue: When the gas was toxic for the mouth too. “incurable sores on innocent tongues”

 

 

  1. Explain the final lines.

The final lines “Dulce et decorum est/Pro patria mori.”  have an ironic tone to them, with the meaning of this phrase being: that it good to die for your countrty. But the poet wants to give other message. He wants to give a message of world peace for wars to end.

Extension Question

  1. Write your opinion of this poem. Think about what the emotion expressed, use of powerful words, use of similes and metaphors, layout, and what the poet is trying to say. Try to use full sentences and give reasons to support your ideas.
    Share these answers in your blog)

Our opinion of the poem is that is very real. The poet expresses his trauma and his near death experience with a lot of imageries. He makes us see how war is and the real conditions that the battlefield is. With his imageries he portrays a serie of emotions like desperation, exhaustion and  fear that is very striking for someone that hasn’t gone to war. Owen gives us ,also, the aftermath of war, and how it affects the human mind. After war you most probably will end up with a psychological trauma that will last forever which is very striking.


E-portfolio

Task 2

-Work on the following poems (they can be found in Songs of Ourselves or you can listen to them)

Soldier, Rest!

The Death Bed

Answers:

Task 2:

Soldier, rest!

  • Opinion: In our opinion, the aim of the poem ‘Soldier, Rest!’ written by Sir Walter Scott is to protest the whole meaning of war. Scott criticizes the causes and consequences of it. He despises the ‘days of danger’ and the battle fields. Scott concludes that it is even better to die than to live after war since living as a veteran is that bad. Moreover, he also emphasise that it is better to die in war than to fight. According to Scott, war is the worst fate.
  • Alliteration: “sleep to sleep” “days of danger” “fairy strains of music falls”
  • Oxymoron: ‘nights of waking’
  • Metaphors: ‘sleep’ This is a powerful metaphor since it represents the whole message of the poem, which is death. Death is important because the author wants to transmit to the readers that death is better than life after war.
  • Themes: afterlife, meaning of life, death
  • Tone: reflective, dreaming, calming
  • Anaphora:

 Sleep! the deer is in his den

Sleep! thy hounds are by thee lying:

Sleep! nor dream in yonder glen

The Death Bed

  • Opinion: Sassoon described the sad story of a soldier that was wounded in war. The soldier is so hurt that he could not see the difference between life and death, dreams and reality, consciousness and unconsciousness. This makes the readers feel sorry for him and to understand how badly war hurts soldiers. Even if they survive, a sad death or a painful trauma will follow. At the end, the soldiers ‘faced in his drawing eyes’.
  • Themes: battle of life and death, war, death
  • Tone: agony, confusion and darkness
  • Anaphora:

Water – calm, sliding green above the weir

Water- a sky – lit alley for his boat


Task 3

  1. Check out the following page: https://www.poetryfoundation.org/articles/70139/the-poetry-of-world-war-i
  2. Choose 2 poems and prepare an analysis.
  3. Illustrate them with pictures and explain which different parts of the poem they illustrate.
  4. Write an essay. Compare and contrast 2 of the poems you have worked on. Comment closely on the themes, tones and how the writers convey their message.
  5. Post the analysis in your blog.

I strongly suggest these authors: Wilfred Owen, Siegfried Sassoon and T. Hardy (but you can choose whoever you want)

Task 3:

The kiss by Siegfried Sassoon

Analysis:

 

 

Channel firing by Thomas Hardy

The Lady in a looking glass: A reflection

Answers:

  1. The looking glass “framed” Isabella, wh. she looked at herself in the looking glass, all the superficial things that she carried fell off. She stood completely naked in front of the mirror, making the readers able to see what were her thoughts and feelings, she had none. The mirror framed her, uncover and found Isabella’s inner self.
  2. The images reflected in the mirror are images of death. While the lady was standing in front of the mirror you could see that, even though she seem calmed and normal on the outside , she was dead on the inside.
  3. While the inside of the house was very messy and lonely, the outside was full of life and bright. This contrast between the two places, inside and outside, reflect the lady’s state of mind, she was calmed on the outside but a mess on the inside.
  4. The objects inside the house are described as constantly moving; chaotic. While the objects outside the house are described as fragile. The mirror reflects this two states of mind.
  5. The facts known about Isabella’s outer self are that she had a lot of money. Also that she had travelled all around the world, and we can say this because she had gathered one thing from each country she was in. Also she was a spinster, and she seem to not have any family connections.
  6. We can suppose that Isabella Tyson is a very materialistic and rich woman. She is what she chooses to show; the physical part. Isabella is a spinster.
  7. The letters that Isabella wrote concealed her inside self, so her personality and her illusions. So if you read the letters you could see what she’s thinking and feeling.
  8. Yes, in the end of the story Isabella realizes that she is dead inside and she is naked of personality, so her reality is given away to the reader, and we realizes that she is lonely and lost.
  9. We can know one’s inner self but at the same time, it is empty so there is nothing to know. At the beginning we think that Isabella owns some letters that we later come to realise that they are nothing but bills.
  10. We believe the mirror is a reflection of the inner self, in the story, it has the role of discovering the real Isabella, and make her see how empty she is. The mirror is a metaphor of purification, self realization, in this case, what Isabella really is.
  11. The stream of consciousness is a technique that Virginia Woolf used when she wrote whatever that came through her mind. She used Isabella to convey her feelings, thoughts and ideas. At the end of the story, we realize that Isabella and Virginia Woolf is empty inside. 

Find a picture of a room inside and a garden to illustrate the house in the story

Read the following text. How is this related to the story?