Friday, August 8, 2008

Irony in "What is the What"

In the novel “What is the What” Dave Eggers uses the theme of irony. The story starts out with an African-American man that is somewhat new the country, and here’s a knock at his door and answers, there is a woman. She ask to use his phone and he lets her, when he lets her into his home she runs to his bedroom and locks herself in. before he can go to her there is a man behind him telling him to stay. One example of irony in this novel is when the main character is trying to get by the man and he calls him “brother” because they are the same race: “You’re from Africa, right?”, “I nod.”, “All right then. That means we’re brothers.” Another use of irony is when the strange man tries to tell him a lesson about how you shouldn’t open the door to strangers: “I’ll teach you a lesson. Don’t you know you shouldn’t open your door to strangers?” Irony is in real life a lot and in many novels. I think people should care about irony because it helps make things more logical and makes you think more.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Ambiguity in "The Sniper"

In the short story "The Sniper" the author uses the theme of ambiguity. The character in the story is in a war or battle. When he shoots a guy from the roof tops, as he ran down to the body and turned it over, he realizes it’s his brother: “Then the sniper turned over the dead body and looked into his brother’s face.” In this sentence I think the term brother is used as his actual brother, meaning he and his brother were on different sides of the war and he didn’t realize it was him after just shooting the other side he thought he’d take the risk and shoot the other sniper off guard. The author uses the theme of ambiguity.

Quotes from The Glass Castle

  • "Don't be so sentimental" (p.18)
  • "He gave me some perfect children, but he also gave me one that wasn't so perfect, so he said 'Oops, I better take this one back." (p.28)
  • "Mom went right to the edge of the cliff and did a perfect swan dive into the water below." (p.26)


  • "You leave that to me. Don't i always take care of you?" (p.17)
  • "Dad turned into an angry-eyed stranger who threw around furniture and threatened to beat up mom or anyone who got in his way." (p.10)
  • "Dad was always inventing things." (p.23)


  • "Second redhead girl" (p.27)
  • "I would have been happy staying in the hospital forever" (p.12)
  • "I loved the desert" (p.21)


  • "I heard loud crunching sound and looked down. It was brian, eating the ice." (p.10)
  • "He was a blue baby, Mom said. When he was born, he couldn't breath" (p.27)
  • "Brian thought that was hilarious and just laughed and laughed." (p.13)


  • J- "Did you guys miss me?"
  • L- "Not really" (p.12)
  • "Curly hair the color of a new penny"(p.27)
  • "had excellent vocabulary" (p.27)

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Motif in The Glass Castle

In the novel The Glass Castle, the title relates to the family in the story. The Walls’ family moves around a lot, which relates to glass because they have no protection from the world, and they are always being watched. Glass is also breakable and fragile, the family fights and they don’t always agree so at any moment they could shatter. The dad’s big dreams were always running threw the kids minds and weren’t always done: “When Dad wasn’t telling us about all the amazing things he had already done, he was telling us about the wondrous things he was going to do.” In this the dad is telling stories to his kids about himself and they are about all these great things he’s done and is going to do. This relates to the title because a castle is mostly in fairy tales and his dreams are like fairy tales, they don’t always come true. This author relates the title of the novel with her family in different ways.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Short answer pratice

Queen Elizabeth’s speech to her navy motivates her soldiers on to victory. She states in her speech: “I know I have but the body of a weak and feeble women; but I have the heart of a king”. This statement means that even though she is a woman this does not make her a weak ruler. If I was a soldier in her military I would be inspired to fight more and work hard to win, and also be impressed with her standing there and speaking her mind about the situation. In the speech by Queen Elizabeth she motivates her soldiers to fight.

Friday, July 18, 2008

First Discussion Question

How is Jeannette Walls' parents attitude towards Jeannette, Lori, and Brian, and why do you think there like this?

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Initial Impressions: The Glass Castle

Jeanette Walls’ The Glass Castle concerns the author’s reflection on her upbringing. Walls focuses on the use of imagery to transport the reader into the author’s childhood. She goes into great detail to really get the reader to picture what she’s writing about the people around her: “Her long hair was streaked with gray, tangled and matted, and her eyes had sunk deep into their sockets,”. It is easy to see how the family of Walls’ but the way they act: “She wore a bulky gray sweater with only a few light stains, and black leather men’s shoes.” As a girl the author remembers when she is young and shows great imagery: “The dress’s shirt stuck out like a tutu, and I liked to spin around in front of the mirror, thinking I looked like a ballerina.” The author focuses on imagery to transport the reader into the authors childhood.