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ENGL100 Life Writing and Poetry Lecture Notes.docx

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ENGL 100
Laura Murray

The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin (1791-1799)  The autobiography begins as Benjamin Franklin is giving advice to his son.  Benjamin Franklin is writing of his “well-lived” life for future generations Quotations for Self-Mockery and Vanity:  “Having emerged from the poverty and obscurity in which I was born and bred, to a state of affluence and some degree of reputation in the world, and having gone so far through life with a considerable share of felicity, the conducing means I made use of, which with the blessing of God so well succeeded, my posterity may like to know, as they may find some of them suitable to their own situations, and therefore fit to be imitated.” – B. Franklin is writing with a purpose to retell his life for future generations; his life is worth imitation  “That felicity, when I reflected on it, has induced me sometimes to say, that were it offered to my choice, I should have no objection to a repetition of the same life from its beginning”  “The next thing most like living one’s life over again seems to be recollection of that life to make that recollection as durable as possible by putting it down in writing”  “By my rambling digressions I perceive myself to be grown old. I used to write more methodically. But one does not dress for private company as for a publick ball. 'Tis perhaps only negligence.”  “I have been the more particular in this description of my journey and shall be so of my first entry into that city, that you may in your mind compare such unlikely beginnings with the figure I have since made there”  “I shall indulge the inclination so natural in old men to be talking of themselves and their own past actions; and I shall indulge it without being tiresome to others, who, through respect to age, might conceive themselves obliged to give me a hearing” One Hundred Demons by Lynda Barry  Uses visual representation for grime topics, thus making it easier for the readers to get into the story without the emotional burden  Presents memories in distorted ways; the non-chronological order of events makes the entire book more relatable because that is how we remember the stories of our lives  Today’s Demon: Resilience (page 63) Allusion to sexual assault – “you can’t forget it but you do remember never to remember it, the time when the shattering into pieces became a way of life” “When I was still little, bad things had gone on, things too awful to remember but impossible to forget. When you put something out of your mind, where does it go?” “What can be forgotten can no longer affect us but what is forgetting?” “When your inner life is a place you have to stay out of, having an identity is impossible. Remembering not to remember fractures you”  Today’s Demon: Lost Worlds (page 27) The game of kickball…is the chapter really about kickball? Just like Milne’s “Goldfish” essay, is it really about goldfish? The chapter about kickball is really about memories – kickball (associations and memories of childhood) -> “The unforgettable becomes forgotten” “What reason would we have for remembering any of it? Yet when we do, there is always a feeling of surprise and amazement over this little bit of lost world” “Who knows which moments make us who we are? Some of them? All of them? The ones we never really thought of as anything special?” “I believed the people in the airplanes passing over could see us and thought we looked cool…this was long before I grew up and found out you can’t see very much on an airplane window. Big things, yes, but the little things are lost” “The city is the there and so are the streets but at a certain distance people disappear, whole neighborhoods of children just vanish”  IMAGE: what is an image? Why is it so important to have an image? (Cicadas: She cannot remember the face of the boy who committed suicide) POETRY Whoso List to Hunt by Thomas Wyatt  Thomas Wyatt enjoyed a
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