Summative Entry

Studying the literature and culture of the Renaissance has amplified my understanding of what it is to be human.

What does it mean to be human? Is it our ability to empathise, to reason, or to plan? The fact we can understand humour or how we are consciously aware of our connectedness to the world and to one another?  It’s a question that has been pondered for centuries and a question I often wondered myself. It wasn’t until I delved into the wonderful world of Shakespeare and the Renaissance that I began to understand what it truly meant to be human.

I have always had a fond appreciation for the lavish language of Shakespeare. However, I thought it would be difficult to relate his writings to modern society. But by developing a more comprehensive understanding of the themes and issues that littered his writings and that surrounded the Renaissance era, I realise that they’re far more relevant than one could’ve imagined. War, love, and politics can be observed every day, whether it’s witnessed in person or on the news. Shakespeare presented love as intense, wonderful, unexplainable and absurd. The love between Bottom and Titania could be interpreted as a strange and somewhat unreasonable love. It highlights how individuals can be blinded by love or even the idea of it. Love is a vital aspect of what it means to be human. It is important to love and to be loved as it completes a natural void in the human heart. Companionship is essential as being with another person allows for love, thus filling the void.

I have thoroughly enjoyed learning about Shakespeare this semester. Being able to reflect on what I have learnt each week through blogging and peer reviewing has been incredible. My class members all share such unique and interesting thoughts that have allowed me to develop a greater appreciation for Shakespeare as I observe him through multiple perspectives. All the peer review feedback I received was extremely insightful and allowed me to continuously improve my writing, as well as give me a different perspective on the topic. My best blog, ‘The promise of a simple love’, highlights my passion for poetry. Being able to respond to the poem “The Passionate Shepherd to His Love” by Christopher Marlowe was an absolute pleasure. By reflecting upon his poem and then writing my own, I was able to learn how to write in iambic tetrameter and how a poem can be musical with the right poetic devices such as internal rhyme, assonance, consonance, and alliteration.

Sonnet 146 was another piece of poetry that resonated with me. The idea that the body exists at the expense of the soul was a catalyst that formed many more ideas. It inspired me to write ‘Toxic‘, a piece about realising when to remove yourself from a destructive relationship and that existing purely to please someone else is not existing at all.

Choosing this module has allowed me to feel more confident in analysing and reading the works of Shakespeare. I am so grateful or all the experiences I’ve had in this unit such as seeing Shakespeare’s first folio, as well as visiting the Shakespeare room at State Library. I cannot thank Michael enough and I look forward to studying more enjoyable and engaging units in the future.

“Good night, good night! Parting is such sweet sorrow, That I shall say good night till it be morrow.”

Lili

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Peer Review 2- Greg Coustas

Kia ora Gregory, (this is hello in Maori)

May I just begin by saying what an interesting topic you have chosen to write about this week. I like how you have expanded your readings and have chosen to tackle something a little different.

As a girl with Kiwi roots, I really enjoyed reading about the Pop up Globe Buckingham Company and how they infused both modernism (speaking in Maori and slang) and traditionalism (all men on stage) into their performance. I like how you have delved into examining two different reviews and looked at both the positive and negative aspects of speaking in the traditional Maori tongue. This allows your reader to remain open-minded and to decide for themselves whether or not they would enjoy such a play.

I wholeheartedly agree with your comment about how readers who perhaps have never read or seen the play, would “miss out on the lyrical and carefully constructed poetry of the fairies.” I believe that there is a sense of magic created when the fairies speak, and perhaps this sense of magic may not be felt or interpreted by an audience member with limited knowledge of the play.

Nonetheless, your thorough review of this performance has me thinking I might purchase a ticket myself. Perhaps I’ll need to purchase a Maori-English dictionary first though…

Well Done!

Note:
Just be wary of spelling
Separate instead of seperate
Erratically instead of erraticaly
Positions instead of postion

https://gregcoustasblog.wordpress.com/2019/03/17/a-midsummer-nights-dream-in-review-week-3-blog/comment-page-1/?unapproved=46&moderation-hash=58c7003f667c352c9652257954ec7f91#comment-46

The promise of a simple love

This week we delved into the poem “The Passionate Shepherd to His Love” by Christopher Marlowe. Here, the shepherd wishes to woo the nymph by promising her an array of delights. However, the nymph believes the shepherd has a way with words, and that he is unable to fulfil his promises to her. None of the promised delights he mentions are permanent and are all bound to die, fade away or lose their value over time. In my poem “The promise of a simple love”, I highlight the transient nature of the Shepherd’s promises and the reasons why the nymph chose to reject the proposal. She requires a simple love that doesn’t include materialistic goods but rather, prefers the notion of an intense, secure and long-lasting love.

Oh, daft shepherd the way you choose to twirl your tongue,

To promise me everything but leave me with none.

Do you think of me a dunce, a prat, a fool?

One who dotes on a gown made of the finest wool?

 

I do not care for your gown, your gold, or buds,

Nor do I fancy coral clasps and amber studs.

If you chose to listen and occasionally enquire,

You’d understand my heart and all I desire.

 

I do wish to fall for your ocean eyes,

But how can I dear Shepherd? When all I hear are your woven lies.

I wish I could say yes, take a breath and be brave,

To share a love so intense, we’d take it to the grave.

 

But I yearn for a soul that speaks the same language as mine,

Where I feel at peace and secure as our hands intertwine.

We would share words that have been felt by no one else’s ears,

We would cry, we would laugh, sharing both joyous and pained tears.

 

The riddle of love is a puzzle no one can solve,

Some find it when they’re young, and others when they’re old.

Some search for years but never find the one,

Others fall in love with themselves and find they’re happy with none.

 

Your proposals speak wonders that’ll entrance someone else,

But make me realise dear shepherd, I prefer the company of myself.

I hope one day you find the love you so crave,

A love so intense, it’ll take you both to the grave.

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Peer Review 4- Laura Nash

Hi Laura,

I really enjoyed reading Ariel’s perspective on his debt to Prospero. You paint such a vivid image of Ariel, describing him as “hot as volcanic lava” and a “winged creature to torment pathetic souls.” I also like how you have made him omniscient, it gives him this sense of power that I believe is absent in ‘The Tempest’. You highlight Ariel’s mischievous side, “When I get the chance, it is enjoyable to meddle in their trivial affairs”, which is important because it is his defining characteristic in the play and brings a sense of authenticity to your description.Overall, I thought this was an enjoyable read and a nice interpretation of Ariel’s character.

The only things I would note is the slight spelling errors.

Loose should be changed to lose

Hot as a volcanic lava” should just be hot as volcanic lava. The ‘a’ may be redundant when used with the uncountable noun lava.

https://lauranash1.wordpress.com/2019/04/09/ariel-from-the-tempest/

Discuss Prospero’s self-transformation in ‘The Tempest’. How does his language highlight this change?

In ‘The Tempest’, fortune has brought Prospero’s enemies within his grasp and he seizes the opportunity for revenge. The play opens with A tempestuous noise of thunder and lightning,” accompanied by urgent tones, Do you not hear him? You mar our labour- keep your cabins. You do assist the storm.  The use of high modal language reflects the chaos and urgency of the situation and the extent of Prospero’s revenge.

The audience is exposed to Prospero’s dark and despotic nature through his treatment of Ariel and Caliban, whom he refers to as Malignant thing”. Aided by Caliban’s soliloquy, the audience receives a clear representation of Prospero’s nature. Sometimes am I All wound with adders who with cloven tongues Do hiss me into madness”. The use of the torture and violent imagery highlight Prospero’s cruelty which has arisen due to his imprisonment by his feelings of revenge as a result of the initial usurpation.

However, in ‘The Tempest’, the audience witnesses Prospero’s transformation take place as he learns to forgive his enemies. He states the rarer action is in virtue rather than vengeance. The use of alliteration and contrast highlights these opposing paths. Prospero has chosen compassion and mercy, moving towards a recognition of the futility of revenge.

He witnesses the omnitude of Miranda and Ferdinand’s love and bestows a blessing. Heaven’s grace on that which breeds between em. This signals the start of his transformation. The use of celestial imagery is an antithesis of hell imagery flame”, “fire”, “sulphurous roaring explored in Act 1. Prospero revels in an enthusiastic tone “why that’s my spirit”, acknowledging the suffering inflicted on his enemies. This contrasts with his behaviour in Act 3 scene 1 when he shows great delight in Miranda and Ferdinand’s good fortune, emphasising his transformation.As I foretold you, were all spirits, and Are melted into air.” The use of emotive language and simile highlights the temporal nature of the world and that human experience is fleeting. Prospero recognises the impermanence of human life and with this recognition comes a shift in perspective and thus his self-transformation. 

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Peer Review 3- Elora Woods

Hi Elora,

May I just begin by saying thank you for sharing your story. I understand that this can often be a taboo subject and difficult to confront, so to witness a woman standing up and saying “this is what happened to me” is really inspiring. I wish more women had the courage to come forward and share their stories like you have today.

I’m really sorry to hear of all the horrendous things you and your friends have encountered. It saddens me to say that I too can relate to what you have experienced, having endured many of the things you have mentioned myself.

What I really love about your blog is the fact that despite all the bad impressions that a lot of boys have left on you, you do not shame men as a whole. You talk about how you have found a man who has “made it his primary mission to replace every one of your ‘self-hating’ thoughts into ‘self-loving’ ones”, and I think that is really beautiful.

Thank you again for sharing your story, it’s women like you who give other women the courage to speak up and tell theirs.

https://cardiophobicspokenword.wordpress.com/

 

Toxic

The sonnet I have composed is about a toxic relationship where the more the lovers try to make things work, the more they destroy one another. It is about realising when to let go and setting yourself free, no matter how much you think you may love someone. I was inspired to write this after delving into Sonnet 146 in class and learning about the relationship between the body and soul which, in some way or another, is reflected in the relationship between the lovers in my sonnet.

When to the sessions of sweet silent thought

Your voice carried by the wind echoes in my ears

My heart on a hook like a fish t’was caught

Your face born again in the sea of my tears

A love so brutal, even Satan begged for mercy

Our arms were heavy, from catching one another

Both of us were trapped, from thinking we’re not worthy

What is there to do, when you’re broken by your lover?

The language that brushed our lips was sour

To please you was like dancing across the blade of a knife

The King and Queen who couldn’t agree on power

Do not blame me, for even the stars choose death over life

How to forget? There’s no manual, nor instructions

Loving you was the most exquisite form of self-destruction

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Peer Review 2- Greg Coustas

Kia ora Gregory, (this is hello in Maori)

May I just begin by saying what an interesting topic you have chosen to write about this week. I like how you have expanded your readings and have chosen to tackle something a little different.

As a girl with Kiwi roots, I really enjoyed reading about the Pop up Globe Buckingham Company and how they infused both modernism (speaking in Maori and slang) and traditionalism (all men on stage) into their performance. I like how you have delved into examining two different reviews and looked at both the positive and negative aspects of speaking in the traditional Maori tongue. This allows your reader to remain open-minded and to decide for themselves whether or not they would enjoy such a play.

I wholeheartedly agree with your comment about how readers who perhaps have never read or seen the play, would “miss out on the lyrical and carefully constructed poetry of the fairies.” I believe that there is a sense of magic created when the fairies speak, and perhaps this sense of magic may not be felt or interpreted by an audience member with limited knowledge of the play.

Nonetheless, your thorough review of this performance has me thinking I might purchase a ticket myself. Perhaps I’ll need to purchase a Maori-English dictionary first though…

Well Done!

Note:
Just be weary of spelling
Separate instead of seperate
Erratically instead of erraticaly
Positions instead of postion

https://gregcoustasblog.wordpress.com/2019/03/17/a-midsummer-nights-dream-in-review-week-3-blog/comment-page-1/?unapproved=46&moderation-hash=58c7003f667c352c9652257954ec7f91#comment-46

Kicking Goals

Give an example from your own life where you have successfully confronted male domination.

“You play AFL? But that’s a men’s game”

“You’re so delicate, you might hurt yourself”

“Play a sport like netball, it’s more ladylike”

“Women can’t play AFL”

I am deeply saddened to say, that the comments above are only a handful of what I have received in my AFL career. The idea that a woman isn’t able to achieve things to the same extent as a man still plagues our society today, and it’s completely unacceptable.

I was about 6 years old when I picked up my first football. The smooth feeling of the cherry coloured leather between my hands had me excited at the possibility of being one of the first women to play AFL professionally.

Playing AFL was like nothing I had ever experienced before. The rush of adrenaline that came with being chased, the staining of knees as you slid along the grass, the crunching sounds that accompanied a strong tackle. There were so many things to love about AFL.

However, I’ll never forget, in my first year of playing AFL a group of boys were watching my team play. They weren’t admiring our skills, or our athleticism, instead they were looking at our bodies. Comments were being thrown around about how we looked in the uniform, including how our legs looked in the shorts. It made me angry because we were not objects on show to be admired, we were here to be taken seriously. To challenge this male-dominated industry and say, “we, as women, deserve the right to play on this field just as much as anyone else”.
My legs are not to be stared at for your enjoyment, they’re here to kick goals, and that’s what they’ll do.

AFL has taught me that being feminine isn’t just about playing with dolls and make-up. Femininity isn’t tied down to a certain category. You can play AFL or Rugby and still be feminine.
It has also taught me to be strong. Last year I broke my collarbone after being tackled in a game. The tireless comments that followed included “well you’re quite small and fragile what did you expect” and “that’s what happens when you play a men’s game,” made me wish they were the ones tackled instead. At the end of the day, it was a character-building exercise. It made me stronger (emotionally, mentally and physically), and though some may look at my large scar and disapprove, it’s part of who I am, and it was endured doing something I love, and I wouldn’t change it for the world, (it also makes me look pretty badass).

I am proud of all the women and girls that continue to play AFL despite the sexism that resides in the industry. Together, we are making a statement and together we are kicking goals.

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Peer Review 1- Heather Broomham

Hi Heather,

May I just begin by saying how blown away I am by your honesty and your ability to be vulnerable. This can often be difficult, but the courage you have demonstrated in your writing makes you admirable. I also want to commend you for taking on a Literature course, despite the fact you struggle with spelling and words in general. Again, this shows courage and a sense of intelligence as you wish to challenge yourself and “open up new doors.”

I think you have done really well for your first blog. The way you describe how you’re feeling on your first day, “My body began to sweat, I felt every drop run down my chest” was a really beautiful piece of writing that appealed to my emotions and even made me feel nervous for you!

You should be really proud of yourself for taking on this journey and don’t forget to enjoy the ride along the way. I too sometimes doubt my abilities and can often lose confidence in myself, so I understand where you are coming from. I constantly remind myself that everyone is on a learning journey and that no one is judging you, as everyone is at different points on that journey. Take the compliments and the criticism with open arms and be the best writer you can!

Congratulations on everything you have achieved so far, I look forward to reading more of your blogs.

Lili (current ACU student) 🙂

First Day