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Dear Reader,

 This website presents my analysis of the short story The Penal Colony and a summary of the literary skills I’ve acquired in my literary class. Taking this class has definitely heightened and improved my technique to literary processing. It is my hope that the presentation of the literary analysis performed on Colony, provides you with a new perspective on the story and informs the methods you will use to dissect the texts you read and find new literary value and meaning that you had not previously discovered.

When it comes to reading news stories, I’m very good at analyzing the text that pertains to corporate transactions and political activity. I would say I’m exceedingly good at dissecting personal statements from corporate and political leaders and perceiving the true meaning of their words. I thought applying these skills to literary text would be simple, but instead, doing so has proven to be my biggest weakness. I’ve trained myself to fully understand only periodical texts. When it comes to literature however, I realized that I needed a whole new set of literary tools to analyze what I was reading and derive any value from it. The literary devices that I’ve learned in this class are somewhat hard to understand. I would compare it to a person looking at technical analysis for the first time and trying to understand what exactly the charts are explaining about the data. If you know how to read the chart and make inferences from that representation of the data, you can arrive at very interesting observations. However, before you learn to skills to read charts, doing so can be very intimidating. Like performing technical analysis, there are multiple ways to analyze a literary text and depending on which method is used, the reader can extract a variety of meanings. Until you learn the skills, you are very uneasy about every assignment asking you to analyze the text in this way, or that way. After multiple assignments that put this ability to the test, the approaches I’ve learned have informed the way I read and analyze everything.

The Marriage Plot

Madeleine had been trying to beat Alton [in tennis] her entire life without success. This was even more infuriating because she was better than he was, at this point. But whenever she took a set from Alton he started intimidating her, acting mean, disputing calls, and her game fell apart. Madeleine was worried that there was something paradigmatic in this, that she was destined to go through life being cowed by less capable men. As a result, Madeleine’s tennis matches against Alton had assumed such outsize personal significance for her that she got tight whenever she played him, with predictable results. (10)

She is so focused in trying to beat her father that she didnt factor in multiple variables that can cause her to lose. Her mania is TRYING because she hasnt accomplished the things she want. Like beating her father in tennis or trying to find a suitable mate. The author used the word “destined” for the constant losses in the game and in relationships.

A Brave New World + 1984 = Too Much Real Life

Is there a just justice system?

to answer this question i need to understand governments, history, and law. i also have to search up various types of governments to understand their reasoning behind certain laws. what is just or unjust really depends on how the system works and my personal views on law and government.


How to use Freuds Dream-work in literature

We must first grab the most we can from the text. Read through the whole thing to get a feel of it. Then we have to focus on the words that have a meaning on face value. After that try to find if theres any hidden meaning under that surface. Freud says that we cant ever fully solve a dream just the same way we cant fully understand an authors work even if we think we have enough tools in our disposal in finding a bunch of hidden meanings, we will not fully understand it. So the best thing to do is grab the most hidden messages and fine the best possible answer through the text.

dream work

The rhetorical element of a metaphor is similar to Freud’s theory of condensation because hes trying to compare dreams to condensation. Condensation is nothing like a dream. Freud talks about how if a dream is written out it could probably fill up half a page and compares that to condensation.

Lots of Writing – The Annotated Paragraph

The following excerpt is taken from The Penal Colony
What is the sentence?” the Traveller asked. “You don’t even know that?” asked the Officer in astonishment and bit his lip . “Forgive me if my explanations are perhaps confused. I really do beg your pardon. Previously it was the Commandant’s habit to provide such explanations. But the New Commandant has excused himself from this honorable duty. However, the fact that with such an eminent visitor”—the Traveller tried to deflect the honour with both hands, but the Officer insisted on the expression—“that with such an eminent visitor he didn’t even once make him aware of the form of our sentencing is yet again something new, which. . . .” He had a curse on his lips, but controlled himself and said merely: “I was not informed about it. It’s not my fault. In any case, I am certainly the person best able to explain our style of sentencing, for here I am carrying”—he patted his breast pocket—“the relevant diagrams drawn by the previous Commandant.”

the semioticians method of language

1. Read through the piece of literature.
2. Find words that have symbols attached to it.
3. Separate the ones that have a physical connection to the word like a sign or thing (denotative symbols) and the ones that have no signifier like an idea or the word justice.
4. analyze the words individually and then analyze the line that the word was put in.
5. reread the poem with the symbols analyzed.

hover annotation

Or what strong hand can hold his swift foot back,

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