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English Exam Review.docx

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English 2017
Brian Patton

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Pulp Fiction Edgar Rice Burroughs  1875-1950  American writer  Books: Tarzan of the Apes A princess of Mars Under the moons of Mars Tarzan of the Apes  1912  A romance of the jungle  The Tarzan series has 26 volumes Pulp Magazines  Pulp = cheap newsprint paper Pulp Genres:  Science fiction  Western  Romance  Mystery  Horror  Adventure Civilization and Savagery  Arnold and the Leavises: Culture and civilization o The privileged few and the uncultured many  Edgar Rice hierarchies: o Class o Race o Species (‘man’ over ape) Context  European colonization of Africa o Congo setting o Rubber and ivory trade o Congo free state  Theories of evolution(Darwin) o Tarzan as a liminal figure stuck between savagery and civilization Kinship of the Savage  Territory over nature achieved, not granted Tarzan’s ‘Primeval World’  Ancestors of the distant past  Dum Dum rituals and origins of religion The question of Tarzan’s Kinship  Tarzan has 2 options: o The white people o The apes  Tarzan’s dual parentage o John and Alice: human(actual) o Tublat and Kala(ape, metaphorical) Specie/Race/Class: Tarzan’s Hierarchies  Mbonga’s people and lower-class whites  Superiority of John Clayton  Superiority of the true lords greystoke o Hierarchies appear rooted in nature, not culture Gender Roles in Tarzan  Another natural hierarchy  Tarzans love – savage or gentleman? Tarzan’s limited savagery  Contrasts with o Apes and other jungle creatures o Common sailors o People of Mbonga  Tarzan as the sexy, white, savage Reading the Romance Part 1 Romance  Medieval romance(romance as a genre) o Very broad o Most popular genre  Romance as a narrative form o As a literary form o Long narrative in prose or verse Romance as a mode  Romance vs. realism and satire o Realism narrative: tries to persuade us that the world is pretty much the same as we are living o Satire narrative: plays up negative aspects of the world – problems are magnified o Romance: a beautiful version between realism and satire – an idealized version of our wold  In the world of romance the world looks prettier, strong and more true  Types of romance can include: science fiction, westerns and fantasy  Popular romance – roots in the older romance traditions o Paper back romance fictions o Long text narratives o Idealized worlds o Journeys and quests toward knowledge or understanding Status and Popularity  Common status of popular romance o Consumed specifically for women o Popular but hidden – kept in private o Referred to as ‘Chick lit’ Romance as wish fulfillment  Providing utopian solutions to real problems  Entertainment provides an escape from the real world Social Inadequacies Utopian Solutions Scarcity/lacking Abundance Work as daily grind Energy Boredom Intensity Manipulation/deception Transparency Social fragmentation Feeling of belonging Christine Geraghty: Three Features of a typical romance 1. Central female protagonist 2. Public vs. private spheres a. Masculine and feminine spaces 3. Woman’s superior understanding and control of emotions Geraghhty on the function of romance  Novels present ideal worlds  ‘women’s values’ – given space  Relationships organized on women’s terms Feminist critiques of Romance  Romance as a ‘false consciousness’  popular culture is out to get liberated women’ The Byronic Hero of romance  Byron’s Manfred(1817)  Jane Eyre meets Rochester Misunderstanding the Masculine hero or romance  Jane Eyre: Rochester’s brusqueness and cruelty  Twilight: Edward’s apparent hostility toward Bella  Pride and Prejudice: Elizabeth’s prejudice and Darcy’s pride Other feminist responses to the romance  Popular culture as a potential ‘site where meanings are challenged and where dominant ideologies can be disturbed’ Janice Radway, Reading the Romance (1984)  J.R’s approach: o Structuralist and ethnographic o From literary criticism to ethnography Radway’s structural approach  the structure or formal organization of a folkloristic text is described following the chronological order of the linear sequence of elements in the text as reported from an informant  elements are taken out of the "given" order and are regrouped in one or more analytic outlines Radway’s Ethnographic approach  means ‘writing about people’ o qualitative research method o observing people in groups o participant observation Radway’s Feminist critique of the ‘ideal romance’  conservative ideological function  the female ‘self-in-relation’  imaginative(but not actual) transformation of masculinity Reading the Romance Part 2 Post feminism?  Post-feminism is a reaction against some perceived contradictions and absences of second wave feminism o feminism has succeeded in its goal of ameliorating sexism, making it fundamentally opposed to the intention of broadening feminist struggle  Angela McRobbie argues that adding the prefix post- to feminism undermines the strides that feminism has made in achieving equality for everyone, including women.  Post-feminism gives the impression that equality has been achieved and that feminists can now focus on something else entirely  McRobbie believes that post-feminism is most clearly seen on so-called feminist media products, such as Bridget Jones's Diary, Sex and the City, and Ally McBeal.  Female characters like Bridget Jones and Carrie Bradshaw claim to be liberated and clearly enjoy their sexuality, but what they are constantly searching for is the one man who will make everything worthwhile Susan Faludi:Backlash: The Undeclared War Against Women(1992) Backlash against feministideology suggest womenwere unhappy notbecause of a continuationof inequality but because of:  undermining masculinity  Women’s mental health  Diminishing fertility  Inability to succeed  Decline family values  Women “too free” Bridget Jones and Feminism  Bridget Jones’s Diary is an excellent example of cultural materialism—both representing and shaping the culture in which it was produced. But if it symbolizes the feminine Zeitgeist of the 1990’s, then it is important to understand what, exactly, that Zeitgeist is. This paper will discuss chick lit as a reflection of “emerging adulthood” (Arnett, 4) and why it is so crucial to determine whether Bridget Jones’s Diary is an anti-feminist, feminist, or post-feminist text.  I will then argue that Bridget Jones’s Diaryis post-feminist in its simultaneous use of the rhetoric of female empowerment and sociopolitical responsibility and the pursuit of a meaningful heterosexual relationship as the ultimate goal. Bridget Jones is a new kind of feminist: a woman who grew up on the 70’s ideals of sexual liberation and gender equality and perverted those ideals into a code of “total womanhood,” which masquerades as female empowerment but in reality turns sex and the body into commodities for sale Spy Stories: 007 and Others Ian Fleming’s Bond Books • 14 published, from Casino Royale (1953) to Octopussy (1966)  Bond was a creature of the 1950's The British Empire and The Imperial Adventure Story  Rider Haggard’s King Solomon’s Mines (1885): the imperial adventure story affirmed the superiority of white, English men in strange, foreign corners of the Empire. The word “thriller” came into use in the 1880s and 1890s as a
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