ENGA10H3 Study Guide - Final Guide: Lastminute.Com, Steam Engine, Paulette Goddard

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Published on 15 Dec 2016
Exam material
Audn's poem 'in memory of WB Yeats' fair game for final, but NOT 'The Unknow citizen'
The Waste Land, Dulce est Decorum Est, Greater Love, Arms and the boy *(to be discussed in
the lecture on Modern Times, last class): The Unknown Citizen, by W.H. Auden
Mrs. Dalloway, Virginia Woolf, Good Morning, Midnight, Jean Rhys
Movie: Modern Times, directed, written by, and starring, Charlie Chaplin
study tip to do well on part one 'short answer':
Make 'flashcards" (index cards) related to each of the works we have done since the midterm.
On one side, put main characters: Mrs. Dalloway, Peter Walsh, Sir Bradshaw,, Dr. Holmes,
Septimus, Lucrecia, Lady Bruton, Sally-I already posted a list of areas of importance for each of
the characters; also be guided by how they are discussed in 'Where All the Ladders Start'. . .
For 'Waste Land,' I would put: Tieresias, the clerk and the typist, the lady in the bar, the nervous
woman and her husband. On the back of each card, put a list of important details about them
(details for 'Waste land' characters are available in lots of detial in lecture notes/'where all the
ladders start'). . Then, 'quiz' yourself by, first, looking at the name on one side, recalling all you
can without flipping to the other side, and then flip the card to check to see how well you did.
Repeat until you can recite everything on the other side of the card, without having to flip. You
will do this for Chaplin's movie 'modern times' and Rhys's novel Good Morning, Midnight.
Some of the common themes mentioned repeatedly in "Where Ladders Start" would be ..
-instrumental rationality (an actor's capacity to choose means as instruments for coping with
conditions to achieve temporary ends desired by the actor.)
-hegemonic discourse (written or spoken version of control by upper class )
-substitutability (of religion with science and technology)
-anonymity (good morning midnight)
-alienation, anxiety, depression, PTSD/nervous breakdown
-shattering of Western Culture
so you mean how will I ask questions about it on the short answer section? mostly about the
'characters' in the poem: Tiresias watching the female typist and the clerk, the nervous woman
and her husband, the gossipy woman in the bar.
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The wasteland
- When Eliot said Tieresias was the key to The Waste Land, he gave us a hint that the
framing device in a modernist work is every bit as significant, perhaps more so, than
what is inside the frame.
- Eliot does not leave us in the dark about his preference for antiquity and his distaste for
modernity. Put most simply, the one reassures him and the other makes him nervous.
His point is less how to represent ‘modernity’ and more how to capture it, contain it, and
connect it to some kind of tradition,
- Tieresias, in The Waste Land, to examine this more closely, is a framing device who
also operates rather like a combustion enginetaking in the volatile moments of
modernity and allowing the subsequent internal explosion to convert the otherwise
random and myriad impressions into a beautiful arc of a fully modern encounter. He is,
by his own account, perpetually exhausted, and small wonder since he can only watch
and record and seems to have no mandate to interfere. He can sample, burn, explode,
and surge; but he cannot interfere. The connection between the internal combustion
engine and modern consciousness is suggested to me when Eliot allows Tieresias to
describe ‘quitting time’ at the office as ‘the violet hour, when the eyes and back / Turn
upward from the desk, when the human engine waits / Like a taxi throbbing waiting’
(‘Waste Land’ 61, italics mine). Tieresias may well be from antiquity, sent by Eliot to
London to impose a ‘pattern’ on the otherwise futile anarchy of a modern encounter, but
he is still a recognizably modern voyeur, recording for us the disaffected motions of a
meaningless urban sexual encounter with the dispassionate accuracy of a web cam:
‘He, the young man carbuncular, arrives, [...]’ Tieresias begins. in order to force its
anarchic energy into the projection of a discernable pattern.
- Or, to put this another way, Eliot borrows his own experience of watching an intimate
scene of screen, unseen by the film actors, but seeing everything, cut together and
pasted in close-ups, medium shots, cut aways, and so forth. In order for this random
scene of ‘futility and anarchy’ to register as an ‘event,’ the ‘frame’ is held steady for
Tieresias and the action takes place before his neutralized presence. Eliot might identify
this ‘frame’ as ‘antiquity’ and the process of framing it as ‘the mythic method,’ but it also
looks a great deal like a movie scene projected on to a screen with Tieresias serving as
an audience of one. The ‘screen’ becomes luminous in its apparently unstinting offering
of what is in fact an imaginary plenitude; various ‘shots’ are broken up and spliced
together to produce a reality effect of ‘modernity’ even though modernity itself is far too
chaotic and multifaceted to be straight forwardly represented.
- Eliot’s use of Tieresias as an example of a ‘mythical method,’ in other words, is very like
the use of a camera and the process of editing to produce a reality effect of modernity
through the cinematic method. In
- The Waste Land is a land that cannot mourn and therefore cannot regenerate, a land of
depression rather than suffering where sadness has been overlaid with numbness, and
nothing can sprout from this rocky soil.
- There may not be transcendental certitude, but the sacred still tries to appear in the
secular, though its typically run right into the ground because of people's overwhelming
need to compensate for deprivations and avoid the awareness of traumas. / the game of
Dulce est Decorum Est: by wilfred owen
In the view of traditionalists, a normal soldier should glory in war and betray no sign of emotion.
Certainly he should not succumb to terror. The soldier who developed a traumatic neurosis was
at best a constitutionally inferior human being, at worst a malingerer and a coward. Medical
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writers of the period described these patients as "moral invalids." Some military authorities
maintained that these men did not deserve to be patients at all, that they should be court-
martialed or dishonorably discharged rather than given medical treatment.
Greater love : wilfred owen
The reality of psychological trauma was forced upon public consciousness once again by the
catastrophe of the First World War. In this prolonged war of attrition, over eight million soldiers
died in four yearssometimes thirty or forty thousand in a single day. When the slaughter was
over, four European empires had been destroyed, and many of the cherished beliefs that had
sustained Western civilization had been shattered. One of the many casualties of the war's
devastation was the illusion of manly honor and glory in battle. Under conditions of unremitting
exposure to the horrors of trench warfare, men began to break down in shocking numbers.
Confined and rendered helpless, subjected to constant threat of annihilation, and forced to
witness the mutilation and death of their comrades without any hope of reprieve, many soldiers
began to act hysterical. They screamed and wept uncontrollably. They froze and could not
move. They became mute and unresponsive. They lost their memory and their capacity to feel.
The number of psychiatric casualties was so great that hospitals had to be hastily requisitioned
to house them. According to one estimate, mental breakdowns represented 40 percent of British
battle casualties. Military authorities attempted to suppress reports of psychiatric casualties
because of their demoralizing effect on the public
Arms and the boy: wilfred owen
Atrocities, however, refuse to be buried. Equally as powerful as the desire to deny atrocities is
the conviction that denial does not work. Folk wisdom is filled with ghosts who refuse to rest in
their graves until their stories are told. Murder will out. Remembering and telling the truth about
terrible events are prerequisites both for the restoration of the social order and for the healing of
individual victims.
In the memory of WB Yeats:
Yeats, who wrote in the immediate aftermath of World War I captures the much less conscious descent into
madness where the falcon flies in an ever-widening spiral, out of hearing of the falconer who would call him back,
and then. How fitting that Auden gives his description of the descent into World War 2 in a poem written to
commemorate the death of Yeats in 1939. Approximately twenty million people died in World War I. How could
one slide into such a catastrophe with so little awareness of what it would be like? One crucial answer to this
question relates to "the myth of progress". Science and technology had produced wonders and those wonders
included improvements in armament. Bombs which had not been improved a great deal since the intervention of
dynamite, now became "high explosives" able to travel great distances (over a mile as opposed to several
hundred yards for a cannon). The cannon ball, while heavy, was an inert object, a hammer blow, if you will, while
high explosives detonated upon impact so that the damage of the shell was inconsequential next to the damage
of the explosive. Airplanes were new as well and capable of dropping bombs, though they were perhaps even
more effective recording and transmitting information about the placement of troops so that the single most
destructive weapon of the war--artillery--could be used. Closer to the ground, the machine gun had replaced the
rifle and the bullet had replaced the musket ball. A bullet could travel at least four times as far as a musket ball,
and with less deviation. Added to that, it was tipped with lead that shattered on impact so being shot once was
like being hit four or five times by a single musket ball.And Science has something entirely new to offer;
poisonous gas. The first gas was concentrated chlorine, released through pipes when the wind was favorable for
blowing it to the opposite trenches. Shortly after that, it was mustard gas, which was heavier, and could be
included as part of an explosive shell. Military strategy had adjusted to none of this. It was still considered a basic
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