LMC 3304 Study Guide - Fall 2019, Comprehensive Final Exam Notes - Abortion, Femininity, Sexism

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LMC 3304
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21 August 2019
LMC 3304
Tuesday’s class went over the syllabus
Students were assigned report dates (reporting on reading for the day)
Discussion on Wit
By: Margaret Edson
Cast of Characters
o Notice Age and Gender Differences
50 years old Vivian (F) and Kelekian (M) are both 50
28 years old Posner (M) and Susie (F)
Characteristics
o Vivian
Worried about how people saw her constantly worried about people calling
her Doctor, professor, Miss
She wanted to be called Dr by the medical professionals made her
think she was on their level and that she was in control
Omnipotent narrator at first as story progresses, she becomes sick and weaker
Her power is slowly taken away from her throughout the play
Studies Donne’s wit”
Wit throughout the play is employed in order to hide from others
o Posner
At first, he calls Vivian professor and Dr because he remembers being her
student
Clearly believes that there is academic differences between different subjects
(English as less superior than Biochemistry)
Power shifts from Vivian to Jason Posner
He can be seen as a younger version of Vivian he is very strong willed and
eager to learn; he dismisses others in order to achieve more
Dismissive of humans and the emotional aspect of humans
Acts like he doesn’t have time for doing the basic clinical (emotional / social)
greetings
Hides behind wit (medical terminology)
o Kelekian
More caring BUT also more formal
Could be seen as more professional has been doing his job longer
Treats Vivian as an equal
Notes that their students get “worse: every year
Hides behind wit (medical terminology)
o Dr Ashford
Strict in the beginning
Becomes sweet visits Vivian
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o Susie
Calls Vivian Miss” which normally irritates Vivian
Is only one Vivian doesn’t correct on her title
Clear division between Susie and the doctors
Doctors are cold while Susie is warm and caring
Doctors focus on Vivian as a research project while Susie understands
Vivian as human, requiring social and emotional comforts
Differential of emotions of her patients
Plot / Story
o Goes from being humorous serious
When Vivian is feelings at odds with other characters, she falls back to her own
expertise
She will break down words or retreat to some other time and place
She speaks formally, especially when feeling weakest
o Vivian goes from patient to lab rat
o Story poses ethical issues being able to listen to patients’ feelings and opinions is
questioned
Posner basically ignores Vivian other than the fact that she is to some extent
useful in his research
o Full code horrific way to stay alive; code team can break ribs and hook you up to all
machines in order to keep you alive
o Superiority complexes being broken down
Susie does a better job than the doctors do with Vivian’s emotional wellbeing
Vivian takes control of some situations by learning medical terminology as she
loses physical control
Doctors lose control in code situation Posner eventually realizes his mistake
Code team would not listen to Susie but would listen to Dr. Posner
o Language matters
Questions
o Who changes over time in the play?
Vivian professor to teacher; educational / academic to emotional
Jason Posner student to doctor; could change and given chance to change at end
of play
o How do gender and profession contribute in this play?
Males are doctors and seen as cold and uncaring or objectifying / dehumanizing
Females (teacher, nurse) are seen as warm and caring
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