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ENGL 2P10 November 4, 2013 - Lecture

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Ann Howey

ENGL 2P10 Anne of Green Gables (continued) How to Engage Closely with the Text – Pg. 257 – Narrative vs Chronological Order – Moving from having the experience told as it happens to a recollection being told to someone the next day – What can we use? What can we take out of it that will provide evidence for your argument? – How does the chapter use parody to critique romance? – Sinking of the boat as a plot point; the beautiful, dramatic, romantic scene is destroyed by the boat sinking – Language; how is it communicated? – How is it creating a critique of romance? – Shift of narrative order deflates the romance of the story – “You don't think much about romance when you have just escaped from a watery grave” – Anne is always thinking about romance; always looking forAvonlea to be more romantic – When romance collides with real life, real life always wins – Dramatic departure from her usual approach of seeing romance in everything – Suggesting thatAnne's reality has become more important; stories can only take you so far – Undercutting the romance she was trying to reenact; makes it seem less relevant toAnne's life – The way she words it is much more romantic than the actual experience; still holding on to her romantic view – Language still borrowing from the kind of romantic story – The languageAnne is using is still romantic; doesn't give up her idea of romance – References to her prayers – Very specific requests to God – “Please take the flat close to the ...and I'll do the rest” – Image of Elaine as dead in the boat sets up a very passive perspective; death as the ultimate passive state; symbol of femininity – When catastrophe strikes she saves herself; incredibly active in her own saving – Element of the damsel who needs to be rescued (romantic) – Also the damsel figuring out how to rescue herself – When you start looking at the alternative (Ruby's reaction), what the chapter does is give us a contrast between what the romantic heroin should be doing (being dead), or what Ruby's reaction is (hysterics), andAnne does something completely different – Not scolded for her actions;Anne's activity was the right thing to do, even though she didn't say a proper prayer – Gilbert shows up; knight in shining offer – Rescue should lead to damsel and knight in a relationship; occasion separates Anne and Gilbert even further – Rhythm as the chapter moves back and forth in a wave motion; thinking it's going to be romantic, and then discovering it's not – Only by engaging with evidence at this level can you fully develop your ideas, support them, and explain how the evidence supports the text – Otherwise you end up generalizing about what the text does instead of showing how it does it Domestic Fiction and the Ideal of Femininity – Christian homemaking – Domestic duties as spiritual ministry to the family – Obedience – Love – Possibly some education – Does the novel allow Anne to defy these ideas of femininity? – Does her resistance turn into acceptance? – Does it become a story of a girl's rebellion and her coming back to accept the norms of society? Two things to Consider: – Is the domestic idea of self-sacrifice and serving others restricted to women in this book, or held up as a Christian ideal for men and women? – Awoman's self-fulfilment cannot be put above the needs of the others around her – Self-sacrifice as opposed to self-fulfilment being the key to what guides her – IsAnne the only one who makes sacrifices? Is the ideal of self-sacrifice generalized? – Domesticity not just about housework; about nurture – Male characters also participate in these nurturing practices – Matthew; able to express emotions without the reservations Marilla seems to have – Matthew's advice is to be as nice toAnne as they can without spoiling her – About providing emotional support and nurturing that Marilla is suspicious of at the beginning of the text – How is this self-sacrifice? Matthew wanted a boy to help out on the farm, but gave that up to giveAnne a good home
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