Week 3: Discussion

Construct a one-paragraph argument about point of view or theme in one of this module’s five assigned short stories.
  1. Make a claim about how point of view or theme is significant in one of this module’s assigned short stories. Alternatively, you may discuss the relationship between two of these elements in one of the assigned short stories.
  2. Add evidence to support your claim in the form of a quote from the novella to illustrate the point you are making.
  3. Add analysis by explaining how your quote proves or illustrates your claim.

New Discussion Requirement

Until this point, MLA format parenthetical documentation has not been a requirement for your discussion posts, but beginning with this module, it will be part of your grade. Every quotation or textual reference should have the author’s last name and page number, so your classmates and instructor can easily find that item.

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Respond to Two Classmates

After you have constructed and posted your argument, reply to at least two of your classmates’ arguments by either:

  1. Agreeing with that person and adding another quote or example that supports his/her argument, or
  2. Disagreeing and adding another quote that undermines his/her argument.

To earn full credit for this assignment, you must meet all of the criteria above.

All current discussions, choose two of them to reply

1.This week, my discussion focuses on William Faulkner’s story, A Rose for Emily.

After reading the story, I’ve taken note that William Faulkner emphasizes multiple types of narration. The most evident is the Non-participant narration. Throughout the entire story, the narrator uses the words we and our when referring to the interactions with Ms. Emily Grierson. The first example is in the opening sentence, “…our whole town went to her funeral” (32). This also coincides with limited omniscience narration, focusing on the point of view from one of the townspeople. “We had long thought of them as a tableau…” (35), “…we had said, She will marry him. Then we said, She will persuade him yet” (37), are additional examples of the events through the eyes of one character. In part, the narration of A Rose for Emily is also objective. Faulkner reminds the reader of a conversation held in Ms. Grierson’s home with the Alderman and Deputy about unpaid taxes, referring to them as “they”, and giving us an illustration of what was said by the members present. Another example of objective narration is the conversation with Judge Stevens regarding the smell from Ms. Grierson’s home; “Dammit, sir, will you accuse a lady to her face of smelling bad?” (34). One question that I have about the story is how did Homer Barron die? Was he poisoned with the arsenic? He was last seen entering through the kitchen door at dusk; “And that was the last we saw of Homer Barron. And of Miss Emily for some time” (37).

Kennedy, X.J., et al.; Backpack Literature, 6th ed.; Pearson, 2020

2.The story I decided to do was William Faulkner’s. When reading the story, I was able to conduct how Faulkner was giving us an objective point of view of the life of Miss Emily Grierson. In one of the paragraphs, it gives us full detail on how Emily’s life was when she was a young lady, stating how her father would run out all of the men interested in her. The narrative also clarifies how Emily becomes ill once her father dies “When her father died, it got about that the house was all that was left” (Kennedy et al. 35.) By describing the people in the town and how they all saw Emily, the narrator allows us to create our feelings. He also describes the house at the beginning of the story, “It was a big, Squarish frame house that had once been white, decorated with cupolas…” (Kennedy et al. 32).

3.This week my discussion focuses on the themes in “The Story of an Hour” by Kate Chopin.

The main theme in this story is freedom. Louise was excited to be free after her husband died. “Free! Body and soul free!” (Chopin, 349). She was thrilled by the idea that she can live how she pleases, without having anyone tell her differently. Another theme in the story involved identity. Her role as a wife restricted her from having any personal time. However, when her husband died, she felt as if she was able to be herself. “Her fancy was running riot along those days ahead of her. Spring days, and summer days, and all sorts of days that would be her own.” (Chopin, 349).

Chopin, Kate. “The Story of an Hour.” Backpack Literature An Introduction to Fiction, Poetry, Drama, and Writing, by X. J. Kennedy, Dana Gioia, and Dan Stone, 2020, pp. 347-349. Sixth edition.

4.My week 3 discussion is centered around the theme within Virginia Woolf’s “A Haunted House”

Woolf carefully illustrates the theme of the home. The connection between our souls and the home and feel of comfort that is tied in our home is sweetly illustrated throughout “A Haunted House.” The ghost couple cheerfully recounts fond memories tied to the home their souls wander. “Here we slept.. Kisses without number… walking in the morning…” Woolf uses this quote it seems to suggest the concept of the home revolves around our memories and the comfort and security we feel. Woolf describes the happiness and comfort of the home as a treasure to seek and to find.

5.The Sound of Thunder Ray Bradbury

The short story I read for this assignment was The Sound of Thunder by Ray Bradbury. The assignment calls for an evaluation of the “point of view” perspective of the short story. The Sound of Thunder is an interesting tale. I would place it to the realm of science fiction literature, similar to that of Isaac Asimov. The story is about an illegal run by a a man named Travis. In this time machine the participants travel back into the ancient past, through cascading centuries, with guarantees of even seeing dinosaurs. For $10,000 dollars one can travel into the past, but only as a voyeur. The one condition about the trip is the participant must remain on a sort of anti-gravity path and not touch anything. To touch something in the past is to change something in the future. The story is about such an occurrence. Travis takes a man named Eckels into the past, and Eckles tramples a butterfly, and the entire world changes when they get back. Eventually Travis shoots Eckles for such a stupid action. The story is told from the third person perspective of Eckels. This is perspective is limited, which is necessary to note, because under the third person point of view perspective it can either be limited or omniscient. The Sound of Thunder is written from the third person limited perspective. A good piece of evidence of this is found in the first paragraph of the story. “The sign on the wall seemed to quaver under a film of sliding warm water. Eckels felt his eyelids blink over his stare, and the sign burned in this momentary darkness… A warm phlegm gathered in Eckels’s throat; he swallowed and pushed it down.” Notice the phrase “seemed to quaver” in the sentence above. It reveals a limitation. It is not absolute in knowledge, but is making a “seems to” judgment, which draws on a limited perspective in ones estimation of reality. The third person point of view, that of Eckles, is limited in nature. The story tells the story from this third person point of view. I found the story to be very entertaining and engaging, drawing out many questions about providence and time. It was a thrilling and thought provoking piece of literature.

Bradbury, Ray. ” The Sound of Thunder”. Backpack Literature An Introduction to Function, Poetry, Drama and Writing by, X.J. Kennedy, Dana Gioia, and Dan Stone, 2020, pp.340-343. Sixth Edition.

Edited by Samantha Shirley on Aug 29 at 8:49pm

6.Luke 15:11-32, “The Parable of the Prodigal Son”

After reading, I was able to find the theme of the story behind the prodigal son. Prodigal is a person who spends money freely and recklessly. The prodigal son represents those who go down the wrong path in life. He also represents those who are looking for temporary happiness like money. The father in this story represents God. Once the prodigal son realizes that he has hit rock bottom in life because of his selfish pleasures, he was ashamed of what he has done and realized that this does not lead to happiness. He says to his father, “Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight, and no more worthy to be called thy son” (Luke, 224). His father said to him, “For this, my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost and is found” (Luke, 224). Instead of his father judging him and criticizing his wrong-doing, he celebrated and welcomed him home. His father was happy that his son was ready to change himself and his life for the better.

Luke. “The Parable of the Prodigal Son.” Backpack Literature An Introduction to Fiction, Poetry, Drama, and Writing, by X. J. Kennedy, Dana Gioia, and Dan Stone, 2012, pp. 223-224. Sixth edition.

7.This week, my discussion focuses on the theme of the short story, “The Sound of Thunder” by Ray Bradbury. The story is basically about men time traveling and the theme reminds us that something that might seem so little can make a big difference in the end. This is what you would call the butterfly effect, or cause and effect. ” With a stamp of your foot, you annihilate first one, then a dozen, then a thousand, a million, a billion possible mice” ( Bradbury, 340)! Eckel’s guide explains to him their company’s safety rules to ensure no effects on their trips in time. The guide wants to him to realize that tiny shifts make a huge impact on civilization in the future. Mr. Eckels didn’t realize that the little things such as stepping on a mouse or a plant could mean more consequences in a million years. Another theme in the story is mortality. ” Get me out of here,” said Eckels. “It was never like this before. I was always sure I’d come through alive. I had good guides, good safaris, and safety. This time, I figured wrong. I’ve met my match and admit it. This is too much for me to get hold of (Bradbury, 343). “Eckels, not looking back, walked blindly to the edge of the path, his gun limp in his arms, stepped off the path, and walked, not knowing it, in the jungle ( Bradbury, 343). Bradbury seems to portray Eckels as a man concerned with mortality. His hobby of hunting for trophies gets its thrill from feeling power over life and death and his choice to time travel derives partly from portraying the triumph over aging and death.

Bradbury, Ray. ” The Sound of Thunder”. Backpack Literature An Introduction to Function, Poetry, Drama and Writing by, X.J. Kennedy, Dana Gioia, and Dan Stone, 2020, pp.340-343. Sixth Edition.

8. The Theme of The Sound of Thunder

The Short Story I read this week was “The Sound of Thunder” by Ray Bradbury. The main character is Eckel, who wants to time travel back to when dinosaurs existed in a time machine by a company called Time Safari that allows hunters to do just that. The company promises neither your protection nor your return, and there are strict guidelines and prospects for exactly how the huntsmen must perform once they take a trip back in that period. The theme of the story is that all actions have consequences. An example of the theme happened when Eckels chose to go on the Safari. ‘Mister Eckels looked at the check. His fingers twitched,’ and “Does this safari guarantee I come back alive?” (Kennedy, 2012) which shows how cautious Eckels is to go. Eckel’s intuition is to rip the check and not attend on the voyage. Eckels disregarded his gut feelings and went on the Safari, with catastrophic outcomes. As soon as the moment arose to kill the dinosaur, he said, “We were fools to come. This is impossible” (Kennedy, 2012). The Author has demonstrated to us that we should always trust our senses and reason about choices we decide to do. This is essential for the reason that if we don’t, then there could be damaging outcomes from our actions.

References

Kennedy, X. J., and Dana Gioia. Backpack Literature: An Introduction to Fiction, Poetry, Drama, and Writing. Longman Publishing Group, 2012.

From Backpack Literature Reading assignments in Backpack Literature: An Introduction to Fiction, Poetry, Drama, and Writing [RENTAL EDITION], 6th Edition:

  • “Point of View,” pg. 28-31
  • “Theme,” pg. 203-205
  • William Faulkner, “A Rose for Emily,” pg. 32-39
  • Luke, “The Prodigal Son,” pg. 223-224
  • Stories for Further Reading, pg. 318

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