Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Macbeth essay assignment

Jill Beiermeister
Accel English 12
Mr. BG
January 18, 2012

Part 1:

A) “Look like th’ innocent flower but be like the serpent under t’.”-Lady Macbeth (1.5.60)

B) I believe that this quote fully portrays the theme of “things aren’t always what they seem.” Lady Macbeth is clearly telling her husband to act innocent while being as evil as possible. Because Macbeth was so soft, Lady Macbeth dominated him and managed to get him to do whatever she wanted- to kill Duncan and become king. This quote, said by Lady Macbeth, is one of many that show who her character is. She is far more ambitious than her husband. From the very beginning of the play to the end, it was obvious that she wanted power and would do anything she needed to in order to get it. She was so determined that she even made her husband evil even though he was not that type of person.

C) Macbeth is a very weird and almost scary story, and there needs to be certain effects and camera angles in order to show that. At this particular scene, Lady Macbeth and her husband are standing in a dark kitchen. They are very close to one another and the camera angle was from below, perhaps to show the danger and evil side of the two characters. You can hear a soft, eerie music that gives the viewer a tense feel about the scene and was non-diegetic.This means that the sound is not heard by the characters but is designed for the audience reaction only. Also, the shot is a close up of the two. I think the reason for this was for the viewers to really get into the movie and feel as though they are there. Because I had already read the play, I pictured the scene in my head and it was portrayed exactly as I had imagined.

D) I think that Lady Macbeth is a character who would never give up for anything. She was willing to go as far as murdering someone in order so she can have all the power. Her tone of voice and her piercing eyes really shows the evil and strong side of her. Actually visualizing the scene instead of just reading from the book, I had much more knowledge of how powerful Lady Macbeth truly was.

Part 2:

A) “The castle of Macduff, I will surprise, siez upon fife, give to the edge o’ th’ sword. His wife, his babes, and all unfortunate souls that trace him in his line.”- Macbeth (4.1.165)

B) This quote shows the theme of “power corrupts.” As said previously, Macbeth was a very “soft” character originally. If he didn't have Lady Macbeth as his wife, he would not have murdered the king in order to get power. However, after Macbeth realized that he actually could take the position of being king, and get away with it, he wanted the power just as his wife did. And he went as far as murdering someone to get it. Macbeth is known as a tragic hero.  He possessed pride and greatness, as well as greed and evil. He went after something and continued to go after it until he received it.  His ambition is never satisfied. He always wants more than he already has. Macbeth sacrifices his reputation, relationships and even his life, just to have power. His ambition leads to his death by Banquo.

C) During this scene, Macbeth was staring straight at the camera, with a close up shot on mostly just his shoulders, up. He was speaking in a slow manner and was very serious while saying the quote. The light was shown only on his face and the rest of the scene was dark surrounding him. Having him being the only character made the audience point our attention to exactly what he was saying and it also made him seem much more powerful and evil than he was at the beginning of the play. When he says, “his wife, his babes”, his eyes get squinty and he starts speaking even slower which shows the danger he has and how serious he is about murdering Macduff.

D) Seeing this portion of the play in action made it seem much more realistic rather than just reading it from the book. The camera angle along with the lighting made me really focus my attention to the film and what Macbeth was trying to tell the audience. After I heard Macbeth say this quote, I understood how much evil he had inside of him and just how determined he is to get all of the power he is capable of getting.   

Part 3:

A) Be bloody, bold, and resolute, for none of women born shall harm Macbeth.”-Second Apparition (4.2.86)

B) Although it is small, this quote has a lot to do with the play and has a lot of affect towards Macbeth. This apparition said by the witches, is saying that no man that is born from a woman can harm Macbeth. Macbeth knows that everyone is born from a woman so therefore, he believes that the witches are telling the truth. This shows that Macbeth’s character is a little weak because he believes everything that the witches are telling him. However, as Macbeth did not know, Macduff was born through a cesarean section and not by a natural birth. This tells us that Macbeth’s character is gullible because he right away believes everything that the three witches are telling him. This statement that the witches say can be an example of the theme, “superstition affects human behavior” because of the misjudgment of Macbeth.

C) This scene in the film can definitely be described as intense and frightening. There is scary music in the background and the characters portrayed are the three witches and Macbeth. They are in an operating-looking room that has very bright lighting and there are bodies on operating beds. This whole scene looks as though it came right out of a horror movie. The camera is not steady which gives the audience a sense of fright as well as eeriness. The camera was shown mostly on the three witches along with the dead bodies also in the scene. I felt almost scared watching it and this was for sure a very powerful and intense scene.

D) I enjoyed watching this scene in the movie rather than reading it in the play. I wasn’t expecting it to be as intense as it was but it helped me understand the characters of the witches and how tricky they were. I may not have gotten a better understanding of the quote itself; however, I did manage to get a better feel for the characters of the three witches.

Part 4:

A) “Blood will have blood.”-Macbeth (3.4.144)

B) This quote is when Macbeth realizes that he has killed King Duncan. Basically, someone was killed (King Duncan), and someone else (Macbeth) will be killed in retaliation. Macbeth is starting to become afraid of what he has done and feels guilty towards his actions. When he sees Banquo’s ghost on top of the dining table he becomes very afraid. He has realized that blind ambition leads to one’s down fall. Macbeth was so corrupted by power and by his wife that he didn’t think of the consequences that would come upon him in the future. He was both ignorant and selfish and starts to weaken as a character.

C) This scene was very unexpected because everyone was dancing around and then all of a sudden, Banquo’s ghost comes out of nowhere on top of the dining table. Macbeth starts screaming, showing his fear and his voice gets very loud. The room they are in has a lot of lighting, in order for the audience to understand how Macbeth is feeling at this point. The high angle on Macbeth makes him look smaller than normal, giving him the appearance of being weak, powerless, and trapped. He is deathly afraid of the ghost of Banquo, which is why Banquo’s ghost is standing on a table to give him a threatening position compared to Macbeth.

D) I thought that this scene was done very well in the film. Macbeth seemed to finally realize the ever so common, “eye for an eye” quote. He is very powerless in this scene which is not like him. I got a much better understanding of the quote when I got to visualize it.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Oedipus Essay Test

  Question 1 

         Fate is when you believe powers that predetermine events. In my opinion, it is easier for me to believe in fate rather than free will. I also think that free will cannot alter a human being’s fate. People who do believe in free will, however, may think that it can change fate somehow and that it isn’t just simply by luck. A person’s decision cannot change what is already going to occur in the future and thinking that free will is what causes certain events can be futile.
           If my life were to be governed by free will, then I could easily pretend that science is the reasoning of why I am a girl and not a boy. I could say that it was my parent’s free will to decide to hangout that one night and not just fate that they happened to be at the same place. And lastly, I could say that it was my mother’s free will to pick the same hospital where my older siblings were born, for me to be able to take my first breath. It was not fate that brought me in this world, but free will of my parents decisions.
         In the end, I believe that both fate and free will have made me who I am today. For example, the reason I get decent grades in school is because of my free will to do my homework and get it in on time. However, I think that it was fate that gave me the ability to want to be a good student. In my opinion, everything happens for a reason and it isn’t always because of a decision you make.

Question 2

           I strongly believe that honesty is a great quality to obtain. Even though I may not fit that role one hundred percent, I try my best not to lie if it is a huge deal. I admit, there are some instances where I may have lied, in order to save someone from feeling down on themselves. For example, if someone asked me if I liked their new haircut, but in reality I really didn't, I would just say something like, “yeah, it’s cute!” instead of being completely honest and saying, “It’s ugly”. Even I would like my friend to lie to me if I asked them a question like that!
           I’m sure there were many times where I have been lied to in the past, and probably still have no clue about it to this day. There was a time I remember where my friends have lied to me about something a boy did while I was with them, at the time. I understood that my friends were trying to save me from being hurt and I didn’t get mad that them but in reality I would have liked to know the truth. 
          I think that lying is a very tough subject to come about because you’re always told not to when you’re young; however, as I get older, there are some instances where that may not be true. I believe it is OK for someone to lie if it is for the right reasons, that is. Including myself, we all expect everyone to be honest and tell the truth, but sometimes it just doesn’t make sense if it means you are going to hurt someone. Using the truth to intentionally hurt someone else’s feelings is never right.

Question 3

           The Sigmund Freud Oedipus complex states that there is a childhood desire to sleep with the mother and kill the father. This theory was shown dramatically in the play of Oedipus Rex by Sophocles, as it was Oedipus’s fate that allowed him to sleep with his mother and murder his father, without knowing so.
            I think that there is some truth the Freud’s complex, but not as dramatic as he depicts it. For example, I think young boys may love their mother and feel like the father is sort of “taking her over”, but a normal young boy would never sleep with the mom and kill his dad because of it. The way Freud states his complex makes it seem as though every little boy experiences this one way or another, but I think that most of what makes up the complex is absurd and disgusting, at that matter.
           An example I can come up with that supports Sigmund Freud’s complex would be when I little boy murders his father. I would go along with the Oedipus complex because it would fill the boy’s desire; however I could never imagine the son killing their father because they want to get with the mom. It is all just disturbing to me and I would never want to think that way!

Question 4

           Antigone is a very strong character and it shows by her actions of not allowing her brother to be left unburied and rot in the sun. She knew it was the right thing to do and she knew it was going to be a challenge but it was worth it to her. She even got the courage to stand up to her brother in law, Creon because she wasn’t going to back out on someone that meant a lot to her.
            Whenever I stand up for something, even knowing that I may get in trouble, I get the courage to do so because I feel so strongly about it. I think that for Antigone it is the same way. I may break rules without even knowing I do because there are so many small and useless ones that I’m sure many people don’t follow one hundred percent. Besides these small and useless rules, there are many others that I follow for safety reasons. For example, I would never just walk out into a street without looking either way or stopping first.
To me, I believe that unfair laws are the ones that my parents assign to me. For example, I have a curfew on the weekdays. I think it is unfair for me to have a curfew not because I want to stay out extremely late on school nights but because I feel I am old enough to make my own decisions. Fair laws are ones that create safety for every human being, for example, it is illegal to do drugs. This doesn’t mean that everyone is going to abide by that rule, but less people are going to actually do it because they know there are consequences if caught. 

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Siddhartha come to America

The day finally came for me to introduce my cousin Siddhartha to America. I awoke abruptly from my alarm clock along with the bright sun peeking through underneath my window shades and realized that I needed to hurry and get to the airport. I jumped out of my bed, grabbed the first pair of jeans I saw, threw on a shirt, brushed my teeth, made a coffee, and I was out the door. When I arrived at the airport it was hard to see with all the people surrounding me. I cautiously checked the televisions to see what exact time his plane was coming in from New Delhi, India. A bald-headed man in a long white robe was approaching me and I knew it was him. Thankfully I was right on time and managed to locate him in the array of people. Was I ready to do this?
“Hello, so nice to see you again Siddhartha!” I greeted him.
“Nice to see you too.” Siddhartha answered as he firmly shook my hand.
“Shall we get started? There are so many places to see here in America that I don’t want to be wasting any time.”
“Sounds good to me.” He replies.
So we left the airport and as soon as we approached my car I knew he was afraid. He’s never been in one before so I made sure to let him know it was safe. I knew exactly where we were headed. Last summer, my sister and I wanted to get in shape but didn’t want to go to the gym, so we both decided on taking a hike every once and a while. Hiking up to the summit house is one of my favorite activities to do and when you reach the top, it feels so powerful and accomplishing. The beauty of the mountain itself and everything surrounding it when you reach the top is priceless. When I brought Siddhartha to the top of the mountain he just sat there and I was wondering what he was thinking. “How do you feel Siddhartha?” I asked him. “It reminds me of home.” He replied. I knew that it was the right place to bring him. He sat down on the rocks and started to meditate. The smell of fresh air and hearing the nature in the background is what made this trip special. We stayed up there for what seemed like 2 hours until we were both finally ready to accomplish the hike down. "Before I thought that I had to find peace by destroying my body.” (88) But now I realize that that is not true at all, Siddhartha says.
“Alright, enough peace and quiet. That is not what America is all about and you need some change!” After another half hour or so in the car we arrived at Six Flags New England, one of the very few amusement parks around us.
“Jill, where are we right now?” Siddhartha asked in amazement. “This is Six Flags, one of the busiest places I know.”
It is one of the most thrilling places to be because of the rides and all of the people there.
“I haven’t seen so many people in my life. This place and these people remind me of Kamala.”(45) Siddhartha says opening his mouth in awe.
After enjoying a few rides and eating fried-dough and a lot of candy, we decided it was time to head back to my house in South Hadley. I could tell he was sad for it to end and I knew it was a completely different experience for him. Why don’t we have these back home? I knew he was thinking. Just looking at the smile on his face after getting off of a ride was enough for me to say I did my job well. I knew he had been trapped in peace and quietness but he needed to experience something new.
“I didn’t even know that places like these existed!” Siddhartha says looking at me. “Why haven’t I gone to visit you earlier?”
I felt proud of myself to be able to give Siddhartha a whole new experience and have him actually enjoy it. “I felt as if I was home again in India when I was meditating on top of the mountain. It was a truly beautiful sight.” Siddhartha mentions to me in the car. “However, going to the theme park taught me that I don’t need only peace in my life but a mixture of both that and excitement. He has decided not to pick one path in his life but to have a little bit of both.
“When you were on the top of the mountain, I could tell that it was you and what you are used to doing back home. But when you were at the theme park I saw a whole other side of you that I think you enjoyed just as much as I did.”
“You are right cousin. I thank you so much for helping me realize that peace isn’t the only option. I cannot be satisfied for choosing one pathway in life. You have taught me well.”
We finally arrived back to my house and it turned out to be 11pm. It was time for bed and when we wake up it will be a new morning and a new day.

Monday, October 3, 2011

My License

Authors Note:
A.)  I think this essay rose to the top because it was the one that most described me and how i am an independent person most of the time. Also that i have many goals to reach and that is a huge part of my life.
B.)  One thing that I thought that my essay did well and effectively was explain how many goals i set for myself and why they are important.
C.) One thing that I feel is a weekness in this paper that there might be some grammer issues and i may have repeated myself a few times.
D.)  One question i would have is, does my essay let the reader know that i am dedicated to reaching my goals?   

Sitting in the drivers seat, feeling drips of sweat slide down my forehead then finally it begins. Going around the rotary and gaining speed on the left turn until I have to quickly stop and show my skills of what I have learned. After about ten minutes we returned back into the parking lot and I finally got to hear the results. I finally managed to get my license. Over the past 17 years that I have lived, the biggest turning point in my life was definitely getting my license. That feeling of freedom and being able to go where I wanted and when I wanted was the best thing I had received in life.

Knowing that I am able to drive myself around places isn’t the only achievement I feel, but also there is the other part of knowing I have conquered one of my many goals throughout my life. Last year it was getting my license and this year it is graduating college with beyond average grades. Going from one major goal to another makes me more aware of what I am capable of doing and how well I can do it.

I have had many goals throughout my lifetime and I find that each one may be harder to get, however, I never give up and always am sure I try my best to succeed in everything I attempt at. One of the best feelings in the world was sitting in that drivers seat of the driving school car and hearing the instructor say, “congratulations, Jill”. 

By taking this one simple event and turning it into a major goal in life is how I can end up achieving even the biggest events in my life.  I love the overall results I get from going after something I know is difficult and knowing I completed it. Being an independent person most of the time allows me to do things on my own and knowing that I can be on my own without the help of others drives me more towards reaching success.

Not only has my license been the turning point in my life but it also let me realize how hard work pays off in the end and to never give up in your dreams. I know that not everyone may have their dream of getting their license but it was one of my many. I plan to conquer each and everyone of my goals i have set for myself one step at a time. 

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Fighting Till The End

(The bean Trees and The Kite Runner)

All I could wonder was what was going to happen next... but knowing me I never knew the answer to that. My name is Taylor Greer. I am alone with a child I named Turtle, who happened to join me in the midst of my travels to the South. I have yet to find out more about her and why this woman just gave her up to me on the side of a gas station. I woke up to another dreary day in Tucson, Arizona as usual, but this time was different. I had a mission to get my life back on track and assure myself I can do whatever it is without worrying about making mistakes and having regrets.
Thankfully, I happened to pass by this “Jesus is Lord Used Tires” place and decided to finally fix the beat-down car I have been driving with no air in the tires. Coming out to help me was this Afghani-looking man who was maybe in his 30’s. I could tell by the look on his face he was eager to help me out. “Come to fix those flat tires of yours?” He says. I told him yes and he quickly went to work. He introduced himself as Amir and said he was only working there for a certain amount of time until he could get enough money to help raise his son. Since it only took about twenty minutes with the help of his fellow worker and owner of the place, Mattie, we had time to talk with one another.
“What’s her name?” Amir asked, pointing in the direction of Turtle. Turtle, I said. She’s actually not mine and it was a “being in the right place at the right time” kind of moment, which is why I ended up with her. I feel like I’ve had her forever. “Reminds me of my son.” He says. So why in the world are you in Tucson Arizona, in the middle of nowhere?” He replied by telling me a long and very informative story about how there was a lot happening in Afghanistan right now which is where he lives. He told me that he needed to find a quiet place where he can help get away from all of the madness happening in Afghanistan and since he’s been here, he actually met his wife, Soraya. He told me that she wasn’t able to have kids, so they ended up adopting one and they both decided to stay here in America to bring up their adopted son with no risks. Amir explained to me everything from how the Russians invaded, to how one of his best friends got shot to death along with his friend’s wife. “It was too much for myself to handle and I knew the best decision was to escape it all and maybe go back one day when my son grows older and everything calms down.” He even said how his dad, Baba, died of cancer.
“I could not even imagine going through what you went through”, I said to him. I told him he was the strongest person I knew, besides myself, that is. He told me that even though he had just met me he wanted to spill all of that information out to someone. I’m glad that that someone decided to be me because not only did I hear a great story that I will remember till the day I leave Earth, but I will always fight for myself and the people I love.
It was then time for me to continue my travels and leave this wonderful Afghani man, Amir who I met along the way. So far I am not regretting this decision to go off and do my own thing because in the end I am gaining more for myself. As we said our goodbyes I promised myself I was able to do anything I put my mind to.