Bernstein

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The piece of Phaedrus as done by Bernstein reminds one of an individual desperately searching for something, the sporadic change of mood expresses what Phaedrus deems love as something hard to grasp. The piece is very frantic and dramatic. Aristophanes part of the serenade seems very cautious, it reminds me of a chase someone  trying to attain something not in reach. Erixymachus’s part of the serenade is more frantic the other pieces on characters in the symposium. Agathon’s piece  seems the saddest of all the pieces so far and does not offer drama like the other pieces.The piece on Socrates is different in that it gives of the tone and pace of someone searching for answers. The slowing down portions of Socrates symposium a result of him making a point. Socrates piece is also the summed up mood of the speakers in the symposium. The different tone for specific characters in the symposium is as a result of the different forms of art or craft they each undertake and as a result of their explanation. The serenade is Bernstein’s take on each character, possibly how he viewed the text and the passion he gets from the symposium.

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The Dark knight

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The bank robbery in the opening minutes of the Dark Knight rises shows the contradictions of society it also served as a message of irony. The Bank teller asks the joker if he believes in a criminal code of honor and ask if he holds any kind of respect. There is irony in this statement because he a bank teller who works in a bank that works for personal interest is patronizing the robbers who in essence is doing the same job they are doing. this is taking money away from the people. The Joker responds with i believe what doesn’t kill you make you stranger. The challenges one encounters in life decides their disposition and interpreting jokers quote he is saying that being dead is better than living in that to be alive is to do things that are considered unethical. Another way to look at this quote would be in reference to his childhood and the bad things he endured  his surviving made him into the out cast he is.  The Dark knight is a  film that manages to mold what can be seen as an evil villain into a complex character that the viewer cares about. The joker is a dynamic character who goes after anyone he feels obstructs his goals good guys or bad guys. This neutrality brings him into favor with the audience as his role never changes. The joker is born from the vigilante batman and the viewer is left to wonder if the Batman did not exist, would there still be a evil like the Joker. The question of fear being a necessary for peace and hope can be seen in the batman’s symbol. This is an ominous Ode for criminals and gives hope to the people. The effects of fear however proved to counter productive has it gave rise to an opposition, this being the Joker. The dark knight explores symbolism and if ones image can bring about peace, it ask the question can a martyr bring about peace even if the individual was evil and the answer that i thought was presented was yes the people had faith in Harvey’s sacrifice and found a symbol of good, while Batman served as a symbol of Bad. These two are suggested to be needed and peace cannot be had without both a scape goat is needed.

Tom Wolfe “Radical Chic”

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The author shows how journalism can be tied to a detailed novelistic way of providing information. Wolfe provides descriptiveness and plenty of detail, this can be seen in the way he writes the description of the black panthers, down to simple things like the nuts on trays or a black panther member eating.The black panthers successes were based on the public’s fantasy of the black panthers being hip. Like the many minority groups the black panthers were something of an inspiration to their black but was also being used as a new trend by the same individuals they despised this being the rich and powerful. The black panthers are compared to the Jews. The black panthers were very strategic in how they represented themselves and positioned themselves in a manner which demanded respect, the use of white servants is such an example in which they use the servants to boost the morale of members. In the sphere of things the black party members though a popular topic of the media and magazines such as vogue they had their problems and combated probes from the government as well as protecting themselves from propaganda. The black panthers are presented the way Wolfe presents them to show that the black panthers were an organization that took itself seriously while everyone saw them as either a dangerous group or a temporary trend. An example of the black panthers being a trend can be seen when the straight out of Harvard Caucasian guy denotes all important things discussed in the meeting to ask who arrange their party and where can he find this person. The black panther movement was in essence just like the occupy wall street movement we discussed in class in that their were people who took the black panther movement seriously and those who treated it as a trend or a danger to society.

Richard Wright “American Hunger”

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“American Hunger” is told through the eyes of a young Richard Wright who moves to a different environment than used to. His change of environment being from the segregated south to a Chicago not suffering from brazen racism. Though Richard does not have to submit to whites as he did in the south there is a tension between black and whites. He poses with is descriptions of how whites withdraw into self the question of whether knowing if your enemy hates you is better than not knowing. Though Chicago’s racism was not out in plain site like that in the south it existed and showed with the limited interactions that occurred between whites and blacks. Richard illustrates the conditioning which blacks endured in the south and what years of oppression can do to someone such can be seen when he is asked to sit inside instead of going outside by a potential Jewish employer but opts instead to wait outside. This deep conditioning of self hate cannot be healed, according to Richard Wright their are layers of hate in the individual and when the individual tries to cover up that scar different variations of the same scar takes place. A deep seated hate is born where the oppressed hate themselves more than those who oppressed them. Even if blacks were to gain certain rights it would not change the awkward position abuse and exploitation in America left them. Richard wrights fear and having to lie to his boss and not wanting to tell the lady of the hotel where he worked about the filthy cook highlights the hardships of being black in the south or the north. Richard Wrights involvement with communist came through his searching for  exception, the search to belong being a case with many blacks. Richards recount of his life as a communist further shows the black mans alienation from society, though he is to join something deemed significant like the oppressors of society he is labeled as an enemy for seeking knowledge. The plight of ones skin was to not be easily evaded and change not easily excepted. The communist fear similar to what lead the white man to oppress blacks, unfamiliarity according to Wright is the cause for aggression t0ward something. His stint with the communist party ultimately failed because what he was searching for (the ability to have a voice) and not be judged could not be found within a group which acted like oppressor’s instead of reformist.

Kazin “Writing was everything”

Tom_Sawyer_1876Kazin’s “Writing was Everything” recaps the moments in the Authors life that made him like writing and provided a means of escape. This was an escape from the brutalities of the great depression which gave writers and artist a difficult time. This can be seen in Kazin’s recap of the room full of writers and how unable to get work a writer killed himself. The effects of writing and how it reflects the real world is seen in Kazin’s telling of an obsession with Oliver Twist. The author believes that such writings depicted the dire situations of his time and admires the bluntness with which the books and mentors he admired told the truth. The 1930’s were arduous times, one can look back through the writings of that time and catch a glimpse of what it was to live in the south. Though the times were hard in a sense this era brought about writers not in that there was no work to be had but there was writing to be done. The authors read by the author all have one thing in common and this is the relaying of events that happened during their time, they are ultimately deemed important  because of the account through which they retell events  that are controversial. Race  played a big part in the narratives of these times and shows the division of America. Kazin is in love with writing because of the different authors who present a world that he cannot portray himself, his love as a result of the vivid and passionate writing styles.

Stuart Ewen “Captains of Consciousness: Advertising and the Social Roots of the Consumer Culture”

Stuart Ewen’s “Captains of Consciousness: Advertising and the Social Roots of the Consumer Culture” delves into the rising use of productions lines and how it shaped consumerism. The worker became a consumer as factory owners realized that they could use the worker as means of selling their products protest became acts of workers wanting to be consume and the increases of wages strategically turned workers into advertising boards. The increase of wage was not thoroughly affective as there were still weaknesses such as the fact that not the individuals wage increase was not enough to make them into effective consumers. The use of advertisement mobilized the masses and made consumers feel desire for products they didn’t necessarily want or need. Through what can be thought of as mind manipulations ads made individual want items, their desires triggered by something in the ad which related to their belief, this belief structured by society or ones peers. This succeeded as a result of the consumer being able to see themselves or wanting to see themselves as the individuals in the advertisement.

“Elshtain, Augustine and the Limits of Politics” Summary

Augustine contends that due to the many circumstances of an era humans have different expectations for the future ahead. The individual only take pleasure in issues that are simple minded due to this they are victims of trickery. Trickery of promises in which the individual do not see honored,  they are to be blamed for this for at the site of work or reform they cower. Humans in essence are perceived to be contradictory and what they hold high undermines true human virtues. Augustine is essentially deemed to be a man that modern humans can tailor themselves from in that he is a complex character who hides no secrets and can appreciate the smaller things in life, such being a “tear”. Augustine is the typical human not offering remedies but telling of his experiences in which one might learn to change.  Augustine’s book confessions is deemed appropriate in defining how humans should go about living as Augustine breaks rules of conformity in order to maintain what he feels will make him a better person. Augustine is the awakening of an individual that was lost and this relates to humans in society as everyone is searching for self Augustine transcended the modern men of today in that he achieved separation from what the masses view as important in today’s society. It is declared that Augustine does not fit into modern sphere of politics because his beliefs and actions contradicts how the typical citizen should act Augustine ask questions and relate experience that essentially calls for the finding of self and unchaining of the mind from norms of the world. This quote best illustrates why those in modern politics stay clear of Augustine “There is much we understand be- cause we believe-not, however, from a stance of naive credulity, or because belief somehow brings inquiry to a definitive halt. To the contrary: belief should spur understanding and sustain further inquiry.” The individual is encourage to think and not only do so but always ask questions.