The destructors – Eportfolio

In the second term, we dedicated several classes to read the story ¨The Destructors¨. We started to read it all together and debating about literary devices, which appeared all along the story. We continued reading the story in class and some at home, but always discussing what was happening and how characters were affected with the development of the story.

The story was situated in London, after war had taken place and the consequences had been left. Everytjing was destroyed, every building and street, except for one house. The story shows how war left the society broke apart, with everything and everyone destroyed, physically and psychollogically. This is also shown by the acts done and taken by Trevor and his gang. The write shows how the gang needs to destroy the last house that was left for the war, to start all over again and begin from cero. With Pato, we discussed three conflicts. The first one is that one, called construction VS destruction, showing they had to demolish the last house remianing for the society to start all over again and build everything from cero again. The second conflict was the problems on who directe the gang, as Blackie was the leader of the gang, commanding every activity and plan of the gang, until Trevor arrived and proposed the demolishment of Old Misery´s house, acquiring leadership. The last conflict which we discussed was the one of Trevor with his one self. He belonged to a wealthy and well-educated family and as he belonged to this gang, he wanted to do things improper of him, showing this internal conlflict he had with himself, with his history and his wish of belonging to the gang. After discusing these conflicts and the story, we had to answer five questions in pairs. This is the work I did with Tomás Braun.

I really enjoyed reading this stroy as it was very catching. As we were reading the story, it became more catching and interesting, as each class one of this three conflicts appeared. Moreover, the fact that we discussed the story all together, exchanging opinions and points of view, helped a lot to understand even more the story and each confclit. In addition, all along the story, the writer is constantly adding suspense, causing intrigue and will to keep reading. This is another reason why I enjoyed reading this story. Finally, the fact that the questions were answered in pairs, helped me both in the questionnaire and for the term test, as I understood thanks to my partner, things I maybe wouldn´t have.

 

I could connect the conflict of constructions VS destruction with something that happens to me, and I do belive tha to many people in our lives. They needed to destroy Old Misery´s house, the last standing house, for the society to be built from cero again, and to start it development as one. I do belive that this happens to me. When we are sad or aren´t undergoing a great moment, in order to start al over again and begin to recover and feel better, sometimes we need to unload and discharge what we have left, as the gang did with the house. I felt identified with this conflict as its common that people after maybe crying a lot or discharging all the anger or sadness can overcome a difficult situation, similar to what happened to the society, which had been destroyed by the war.

 

Picture poem – Eportfolio

About two weeks ago, Pato told us to look for an image we had taken and that we liked. Based on this image, we should first look for five nouns, five adjectives and five verbs which could be seen or could be related to this image. After doing this, we should make two literary devices about this image. With the literary devices, the nouns, adjectives and verbs, we should make our own poem, as we liked. Although it was a very open activity, with plenty of choices and options to do, it was a little bit complex and difficult, but much more entertaining and fun, for myself. I chose a picture I had taken one week before in Independiente´s stadium. After selecting everything Pato told us to, I wrote the following poem, showing and trying to show in it how passionate I and every Independiente fan is for the club, and how every match is lived in the LDA.

 

I really enjoyed performing this activity. To begin with, I liked the fact that I could do it individually, as I could express and write whatever I wanted about, without needing to consult and ask someone else if they agreed. Although sometimes writing essays or doing works in pairs helps to exchange ideas and complement each other, I´m really glad this activity was individual, otherwise I wouldn’t have been able to express fully as I wished. Moreover, the fact the option and task was so open and free to choose was also great, as I could write about my passion and however I wanted to. I really enjoyed writing this poem and didn’t see it like a task or a work, but as a way of putting in words something I really enjoyed doing every weekend. Also, changing and doing different activities is always nice instead of doing always the same things. Having the chance of varying is enjoyable and fun, and even more if we are able to use things we have learnt to express ourselves about whatever we like or want. 

This is my work.

I could relate and connect this activity with two things. On the one hand, the most obvious one is my passion, football and Independiente. As it was about what my poem was about, a lot of memories and moments came to my head when writing the poem. I had plenty of things to connect and express about and this is thanks to how much I love playing football and going to this stadium. When I was writing the poem I felt as if I was in the stadium, chanting and cheering up the players, feeling the atmosphere and climate. 

 

On the other hand, I could also relate this with an activity we did with our Art teacher in the first term. In this one, we had to choose a picture we liked of ourselves doing something that we liked, draw it and finally develop why we had picked that picture and why we liked what we were doing. It made me remember about this activity, as first we were free to choose a picture we liked or something we enjoyed doing, and also the freedom to do whatever we wanted was the same in both activities. Finally, both in the literature and art activity we had to describe in some way why we liked this picture o why we chose it.

The lady in the looking glass: A reflection – E-portfolio

One of the activities I enjoyed the most was when we read and analysed the story “The Lady in the looking glass: a reflection”, by Virginia Woolf. First of all, we did research about the author and the context and background of the story. She fought for women’s rights and was a courageous woman, and very revolutionary for that time. This research allowed us to know the context and background of the story and the author’s biography. The story has a really interesting development and plot twist. The main character is Isabella, who appears to hide her true inside by showing through the outside another side and many layers who hide her true self. From the outside, she appeared to be someone who was cared for, with many letters from friends and appreciated her. However, as we reach the end, we realize that those “letters” turned out to be bills. This showed Isabella’s two sides. The one from the outside, which was the one she showed to everyone,to hide her other and true self, from the inside. She was lonely and had many debts, which she wanted know about, hiding them behind these layers of life. Virginia Woolf uses metaphors, comparisons and similes to show these two sides of Isabella, throughout the house’s appearances. As well as Isabella, the inside of the house was creepy, dark and messy, but from the outside, you could see a colourful garden with many flowers and hiding this darkness with a lot of brightness and positivity.

 

       I really liked this activity for several reasons. First of all, the story was incredible and fascinating from every aspect. The amount of comparisons and diverse metaphors to represent one thing used by Woolf was really impressive. Moreover, the use of symbols such as the mirror and how it reflected someone’s inside and outside also caught my attention a lot. In addition, the way message given by Woolf is very true and worth to think about. Isabella is very unhappy as she hides her true self with layers filled with lies, and with this Wool wants to transmit that we need to accept how we are, and love ourselves as we are. We don’t have to be afraid of what we like, what we do, or how we are, and begin to love ourselves with our good and bad things, no matter what others may think or say.

          This activity is connected to our everyday life. At least I felt really identified with Woolf’s message. I sometimes hide what I like to do or act in a different way according to who I am with, fearing what people may think or say. Everyone has sometimes experienced this and mainly adolescents have. Although I might keep doing it sometimes without realizing, the poem and message given by Virginia helped me to understand that I have to stop hiding my true self, and be how I really am. I don’t need to be afraid to show my true self, as I have good things and bad things, which is good to accept them. It’s true, as Virginia shows, that by loving yourself and liking how you are with your good and bad things you will be happier, as hiding your true self like Isabella leads to loneliness and unhappiness. You have to be proud of who you are, accept your positive and negative aspects and love yourself, letting everyone to know your true self.

E-portfolio – I hear an army

Some weeks ago, Pato told us to choose a poem and in pairs analyze it. I worked with Tomás Braun and we chose the poem “I Hear an army”, by James Royce. We should first of all look for information about the author and the literature period. After doing this, we should analyze the title of the poem, look for the theme, the tone and literary devices. Finally, we should look for one illustration for each stanza. All of these tasks should be combined into one presentation. We were also able to find out about a very interesting poem and about James Royce. This is the presentation I made with Tomás Braun.

This activity was also helpful for us. I was able to discuss with my partner about what we should and shouldn’t  include. In this way, I could see another perspective and point of view other than mine. I learned about a new literature period, Imagism and also learnt more about war poetry, thanks to this poem. Moreover, by having a partner with whom I could discuss and ask, I could understand the poem easier. He helped me to clear my doubt and I did the same thing. Although sometimes individual work is helpful, group work does not only allows us to exchange ideas, but also to have someone who can clear our doubts and answer our questions if we have some.

Finally, this poem is very related and connected to what we studied and saw in the first term, war poetry. We analyzed poems such as “Soldier, rest” or “Death”, which show the hardships and difficulties underwent by soldiers along warfare. War poetry shows how tragic war is, and this poem also narrates and presents the trauma caused in soldiers. Our poem, “I hear an army”, leads with the suffering of war and how tragic it is. The title, foreshadows that the poem is going to deal with the nightmares and horrors of war, as it presents an army approaching the narrator, which is being hunted. This is how I find a strong connection between the poem and war poetry, as “I hear an army” narrates the horrors of war, as well as the rest of the poems we studied in the first term. Finally, this is also related to what it’s happening nowadays, as many countries(in Asia for example) are at war, and have to undergo this trauma and the hardships war causes.

The lady in the looking glass: a reflection

After reading and discussing “The lady in the looking glass: a reflection”, Pato told us to answer in pairs some questions from her blog. This is the work Tomas Braun and I did.

The lady in the looking glass

questions

 

Question 2: The unnamed narrator attempts to construct a portrait of the Isabella Tyson that consisits of her outer self and her inner self. The portrait is reflected in the objects inside and outside the house as they reflect in the mirror. Describe the images reflected in the mirror.

 

2) The narrator builds the inner and outer self of Isabella from the things and objects reflected in the room and in the garden. On the one hand, the inside of her is represented as an empty, dark room. In there, strange creatures and shapes danced through the joyless room. For example, there were “petals falling” and “ curtains blowing”, giving a gloomy atmosphere. On the other hand, her outer self is represented by a garden full of life and joy. It was full of colorful flowers and moving creatures.

 

Question 3:

What kind of contrast is there between the objects inside the house and outside the house, as they are reflected in the mirror?

 

3- The contrast between the inside of the house and the outside, allows the reader to see and compare this contrast to Isabella’s inner and outer self. In the inside of the house, we can see chaos, mess and a lot of creatures, showing how horrible and dark the inside of it is. However, the outside is still, quiet and colorful. This contrast which is reflected in the mirror can make us realize that Isabella’s inside and her mind was a chaos and a mess, although from the outside we could see calmness and that she seemed organised.

 

Question 4:

Describe how the narrator attempts to compose the portrait through the mood inside the room, through her own imagination, and through the presentation of Isabella in the mirror

 

4-By describing the mood inside the room, throughout the mirror, we can realize how Isabella is presented and described. The room, in the inside, is dark, spooky and with many creatures. Moreover, everything is a chaos and a mess, with chairs all over the place. We can compare the room with Isabella’s inner self and mind. Although she shows another thing in the outside(like the garden) we can see that in the inside her kind is a chaos. Her mind is reflected with the room and the inside of the house, by the mirror, showing a straight connection between them.

 

Question 6:

What material objects inside and outside the house does the narrator use to imagine Isabella’s life?

 

6) On the one hand, for her inner self the author chose to represent her with furniture Isabella bought during her various trips to foreign countries. For example, the “rugs, chairs, cabinets” that were afforded in the “most obscure parts of the world”.  the other hand, the main thing the author uses to describe Isabella’s outer self is the various types of colorful flowers, like “white and violet blossoms” and roses.

 

Question 7:

What are Isabella’s letters supposed to conceal, according to the narrator? What would one know if one could only read them?

 

7- These letters, at the beginning are supposed to be love letters from relationships, boyfriends and friends, who showed their affliction and care for her. They are supposed to be “appointments to meet”, “long letters of intimacy and affection”. She seemed to be a person with lots of bonds, and relationships, with a lot of friends who were constant seeking to reach her throughout numerous letters. Despite this fact, in the end, we realize that these letters were bills which she had been hiding, showing that although we saw in the outside a sociable and rich person(garden), she had a lot of bills to pay and no one talked to her. In the end, we understand she was lonely and not so sociable as we thought.

 

Question 8:

At the end of the story, according to the narrator, is it possible to know objectively one’s inner reality?

 

8) What the author tries to transmit with the story is that most of the times we have two versions of us: one that we show to everybody and is superficial, and other that is personal and its empty and dark. At the end, the writer shows it is possible to know one’s inner self, as there is an epiphanic moment in which she discovers “ she was perfectly empty”. This means she was dead alive, and had no purpose of loving another person, and she herself was able to discover it. She realised all the colorful flowers and life she showed to others didn’t represent her real self at all.

 

Find a picture of a room inside and a garden to illustrate the house in the story

Read the following text. How is this related to the story?

 

The main feature that relates it with the story is that the text presents two women who represent the two extremes of women stereotypes in the XXth century: the angel and the mad. In “The Lady in the Looking Glass”, these are represented through Isabella’s inner and outer self; one which is very joyful and colorful, and other which is dark and tactless. Moreover, the text deals with Women and their rights at the times when Virginia Woolf lived, and we can also say that the author of our story was on the “monster” side.

 

The destructors – Questions

In our Literature class, we read the story “The destructors”. After this, Pat told us to select five questions from her blog and answer them. I worked with Tomás Braun and these are our questions.

 

The destructors

 

Questions:

 

  1. What do you see as the central theme of this story? Remember: a theme is not simply a subject like “love”. It is a fuller expression of what an author is trying to suggest about this subject. Write a paragraph explaining your interpretation of this story’s theme.(tomy)
  2. Identify three important conflicts present in the story. Explain what exactly is causing the problem—and whether they are internal or external in nature. Finally, explain which of these conflicts seems to the central problem.(mati)
  3. Of what significance is the setting of this story in blitzed London? Does the story have anything to say about the consequences of war? About the causes of war?(mati)
  4. On the surface this is a story of action, suspense, and adventure. At a deeper level it’s about delinquency, war, and the hidden forces which motivate our actions. Do you agree? Give reasons for your answer.(tomy)
  5. Research a definition of the philosophy of nihilism. How might the Wormsley Common Gang’s actions in the story demonstrate a kind of nihilism?(tomy)

 

1- In our opinion, the central theme is loss of innocence, as despite of being just children they carry out such a rebellious and criminal act. Kids of their age are meant to play games and be with friends, but instead they are converting a real house in ruins. Moreover, a factor that contributed to this is the Second World War, as it introduces the children to the cruelty and reality of the world at a very young age, so because of this they weren’t innocent at the time of destructing Mr. Thomas’ house.

 

2-  The first conflict which can be identified in this story is the problem of leadership and who directs the gang. Originally and before Trevor arrived the gang, the leader was Blackie who used to command every activity of the gang, by carrying out plans and giving orders to the members of it. However, when Trevor arrived, the members started to like him and how he thought. He finally took the leadership when he had the plan and idea to destroy old misery’s house. This conflict of leadership is an external conflict as it involves to people for this wrest for leading the gang. Another conflict is construction VS destruction. Throughout the story there’s a problem with this, as it’s shown the idea that destructions lead or even is construction. The war, in the city had ended and destroyed every existing house, except for Old Misery´s house. The gang wanted to destroy the house, to end with what war had started, and in this way not only end war but also starting and constructing all over again. This problem is external as it refers to war, it´s consequences on the city and how to end war and rebuild the city(destroying the last house which had survived). The last conflict present in the story is Trevor´s internal conflict with himself. He, had belonged to a well-educated and common family, which did not suffer from economic issues. However, he wanted to belong and participate in this gang, so he started to do things improper of him. It´s an internal conflict as he is struggling with himself to belong to the group, doing things he wasn’t used to do in the past.

 

3- The setting of the story is important, as London was bombed during WW2, and this war had caused a massive destruction. In the story, it’s of great importance, as the bombing had lead to the destruction of every house, except Old Misery’s house. In the story, s it goes on, the gang decides and plans to destroy this house. This symbolizes the idea of destroying everything which was left, in order to leave war behind, starting all over again. For this reason, the setting of the story and how it was affected by bombing in WW2 refers to this idea of constructing with destruction.

 

4-These are as important as the other themes, as they are the factors of the story which contribute to the destruction of Mr. Thomas’ house. Throughout the story, the boys felt the necessity of destroying the house for no reason, being a clear act of cruelty and vandalism.

 

5-Nihilism is the denial of any religious or moral values. This philosophy has a lot to do with the story, as it is what the kids undergo when destroying the house. When they carried out the horrible act, they didn’t care about what consequences it could bring, and also the repercussions it would bring to Mr. Thomas. Moreover, the boys follow this philosophy because they live in a society in which destroying a house and capturing a man is something that children are capable of doing.

 

Art as a form of creation-final work

Art as a form of creation

 

Final work

 

  • Choose a conflict that exists today
  • Explain: Participants, conflict and objective
  • Find a poem, text, song, article, text, etc. which talks about the conflict.
  • Suggest a solution

 

Conflict: Instability in Venezuela

 

The main participants and members of Venezuela’s crisis are Maduro and his government, people in Venezuela and the opposition lead by Guaido. The financial crisis, the scarcity of basic products, the rising of unemployment lead to a huge migration to other countries as well as horrific living conditions of Venezuelan people. Hyperinflation, corruption, low productivity and competition as well as a decrease in oil prices also contributed to the disaster suffered by people in Venezuela, whose minimum salary is of eight dolars per month. Maduro’s harsh and corrupt government lead to several repressions and attacks on Venezuelans, who seek for a better economic situation and a change of president.

 

The opposition is lead by Guaido, the actual president of the national assembly of Venezuela and the recognised president of Venezuela, despite Maduro´s resistance to hold power. Juan Guaidó is focused and aims to oust Maduro from the presidency, due to the difficulties and hardships he has provided and caused to the country and its population. The authoritarian government is not only opposed by Guaidó, venezuelan people and other countries, but also by parts of the military, which can result in a military intervention to Maduro’s government and end with the suffering of the people. The support acquired by Guaidó from Venezuelan people shows that terms of democracy have been broken, as people are unwilling to continue with Maduro’s government and his authoritarian regime, but to stop with such harsh living conditions and achieve economic prosperity again.

 

The solution to this problem and disaster which people in Venezuela undergo is a change of president, either by Maduro´s own will or throughout a military intervention. It´s clear that people in venezuela can’t continue to resist such a huge crisis, which combines both repressions and violence with economic problems, scarcity and a financial crisis. The consequences of the authoritarian regime on people are severe and this is why the best solution is a change in the presidency.

 

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-36319877

 

This article, written by the bbc, explains and develops with detail the situation in Venezuela. It shows the participants, what they look for and the conflict. Moreover, it explains how the conflict escalated and the consequences it had on people, showing how horrible and harsh the situation is in Venezuela.

Art as a form of creation – Eportfolio

Art as a form of creation

E-portfolio

Yesterday, Pat divided us in different groups from the ones of the presentations, so that we would change partners. We discussed in these groups the material we had to bring to the class, asking questions about how it was related to the presentations and why we had chosen it. We could discuss articles, songs, pictures and poems. After doing this activity, Pat gave us papers in which we should write a word, a phrase and an idea which we considered important about this activity and the presentations.

  • Explain the activities we did yesterday.
  • Focus on the material you brought to class. Include it in your blog.
  • Connect that material to the poems read.
  • Choose 1 person in your group and comment on the resources he/she brought. How’s that related to the topic discussed/what I brought.

 

These are the pictures I brought to class:

 

 

In my opinion, these pictures are very related and connected to two poems we read, the one I presented, “Soldier, Rest” and “Dulce et Decorum est”. Both of these poems, refer to the pain and suffering underwent by soldiers during warfare. The inhuman conditions in which they lived in trenches and the constant risk they has to face are several aspects developed in the poems. Their message it’s to make people understand how harsh and heavy war was for soldiers and the trauma caused by it. In both of these pictures, the awful conditions in which war was fought. The precarious state of trenches together with their bare feet are some examples of their poor living conditions. This is also one of the reasons of why war is so harsh, negative and has to be avoided, and it’s not something to be proud of. This idea is mainly shown in the poem “Dulce et Decorum est”, which emphasizes that dying for your country is not honorable, but “an old lie”.

From my group, an interesting song was brought by Luz, called ¨Brothers in arms¨, by Dire Straits. This song or poem is really attractive and interesting, as it describes the pain and suffering underwent by soldiers during war and how evil is war, which causes many losses. I relate this song to the poem ¨the death bed¨, as in this one death is personified and chooses someone to die, showing that war leads to a constant battle and risk between life and death, and that anyone could be chosen to die during war, as casualties are something common. Moreover, this song is related to the poem, ¨soldier rest¨, by Sir walter scott. I believe this, as both of them show the horrors of war, and how soldiers are traumatised by it, as a consequence of their constant pain felt in warfare.