42 Matching Annotations
  1. Dec 2015
    1. where we wake up electrified out of the coma

      this reminds me of "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest" at the end where Murphy either receives a lobotomy or electroshock therapy and has been transformed from his once vibrant self to an asylum zombie. I think a lot of people that Ginsberg is attacking in this poem would like to lobotomize or tame those that are different from them (like the angelheaded hipsters)

    2. I’m with you in Rockland

      repetition can indicate insanity, or it could be to prove his solidarity with whom he's speaking (Carl Solomon?). but why Rockland?

    3. who chained themselves to subways for the endless ride

      perhaps these nomadic hipsters have nowhere to go, so they are forced or propelled to spend their days on the subway with no particular destination because they don't know where they will end up or what will happen to them if they stop moving.

  2. Oct 2015
    1. Where’n hell dja think Hell was

      I'm interested in the language Brown uses- is he mocking "negro poets" by exaggerating the language of African Americans in the south? Or is this his way of declaring his pride for his culture and for being a "negro poet"? Or, is he using this language to prove to white people/poets that "negro poets/ poetry" can be just as successful? OR OR OR is he just using it because it's fun and makes the poetry more interesting?

    2. Sicked on by white devils In overhalls.

      This whole poem reminds me of the character Troy Maxson from "Fences". he has a brother who thinks he can open the gates to heaven like, or with or something, st. peter, and there's a part where he says he met the devil and he was wearing a white hood (paraphrasing). even though Fences was set in the 50s, African Americans were still facing a lot of the same obstacles as they were when this poem was written.

    3. They heard the laugh and wondered; Uncomfortable

      the white men/ people that are trying to break down African Americans are stunned when African Americans keep standing up for themselves, even growing stronger through their strife

    4. They broke you in like oxen,

      this human objectification and comparison of humans to animals reminds me of the mindset of the slaveholder. "keep the body strong, but break down the mind"

    5. She jes’ gits hold of us dataway.

      African Americans of the time really connected with Rainey's music because it reflected their struggle (struggle is an inherent theme in blues music). Hughes might say she wasn't afraid of being a "negro poet" and wasn't trying to be a "white poet" or artist

    6. I

      why is the poem split into sections? it made sense in The Wasteland because that poem is so long, but this poem is relatively short, so it seems odd to split it into sections.

    1. Who is the third who walks always beside you? When I count, there are only you and I together  360 But when I look ahead up the white road There is always another one walking beside you Gliding wrapt in a brown mantle, hooded I do not know whether a man or a woman —But who is that on the other side of you?

      There are many different instances of the "fragment" or "ruins" motif in this poem that appear through different mediums. Sometimes Eliot uses the formatting of the poem to create fragments, which can be seen in "II. A GAME OF CHESS" by the fragmented language. Other times, as he does in this stanza, he personifies fragmentation. This paragraph signifies the motif of fragmentation by fragmenting a character in the story into two separate people. One way of viewing these lines is that the person the narrator is describing is leading a double life or double consciousness, and the narrator is now seeing this person's doubleness. Another interpretation- that seems to be the most popular- is that the narrator is hallucinating that there is another person walking with them.

      This interpretation comes from the story of Ernest Shackleton, a polar explorer that lead expeditions to Antarctica, who cited in one of his books that he once hallucinated while on an expedition. This explanation covers why the narrator is looking "ahead up the white road". "The Wasteland" was written shortly after WWI ended, leaving some of the world in ruins and fragmented apart from each other. Eliot could be citing Shackleton's hallucination experience because the world (especially the US) was experiencing its own post-war hallucinations of grandeur during the party age of the 1920s. Much of the 1920s was about forgetting the troubles of the world and pretending like life was fine and dandy. The people of this time not only created their own hallucinations of a better life, but created a double consciousness for themselves by buying into these hallucinations. Fragmentation can also be a form of compartmentalization, which is exactly what the time period that the poem was written in, was about.

    1. The Negro artist works against an undertow of sharp criticism

      this reminds me of when Kanye interrupted Taylor Swift at the VMAs a million years ago. people still hate him for this even though they don't really stop to think why he did it. although his delivery might have been obnoxious, he actually had a good message which is that white entertainers are constantly awarded over black entertainers for mediocre work, even when black entertainers have created something better

    2. I want to be a poet, not a Negro poet

      this reminds me of something Kevin Hart said about his movies- he said something along the lines of he didn't want his movies (that star mostly black characters/ actors) to be defined as "black movies", but rather movies that anyone can enjoy, because most movies star mostly or all white casts and aren't defined as "white movies" that can only be enjoyed by white people. It's interesting to me that Hart's statement has been received more positively than Hughes received this poet's statement

    1. Her drying combinations touched by the sun’s last rays

      could this drying signify purifying?

    2. O Lord Thou pluckest me out O Lord Thou pluckest


    3. But who is that on the other side of you?

      could this be an example of fragments? maybe the person Eliot is describing has become two different people, fragmented version of their former self

    4. And voices singing out of empty cisterns

      literal voices, not the "different voices" and languages as seen previously in the poem

    5. These fragments I have shored against my ruins

      an obvious example of fragment/ ruins motif

    6. mon semblable,—mon frère!

      this means "my fellow- my brother!" translated from French; Eliot uses German earlier in this verse- what is the significance in writing some parts in other languages?

    7. wicked pack of cards

      are these tarot cards? tarot cards are meant to tell the future, so could this be a form of foreshadowing?

    8. Marie

      is Marie Eliot's alter ego or nickname? or is he narrating this poem from the mind of a woman?

    1. whether

      is this supposed to have a double meaning as whether/weather since "climate" is mentioned a few lines earlier?

    2. Egg

      eggs are mentioned a few times (along with other words that seem to be significant because of how often they're repeated); what makes eggs so special in this piece/ what do they represent?

    3. It is rose in hen

      the first thing that strikes me about this poem is that all of the sentences are either incomplete or they're fragments; is there a meaning/ symbolism behind this?

  3. Sep 2015
    1. to be tricked out that night

      "tricked out" could also mean "pimped out", meaning these "slatterns" are prostitutes

    2. peasant traditions to give them character but flutter and flaunt

      The "them" he is referring to is the slatterns; is Williams saying that the only thing that gives women character (or that society will allow to give them character) is flaunting/ selling their bodies?

    3. some Elsie

      it seems he's using the name Elsie to refer to just any average woman- but "Elsie" isn't a very common name; maybe this name holds a significant meaning for Williams or holds a symbolic meaning in the poem.

    1. I doubted if I should ever come back.

      is he thinking maybe he should come back to check out that other road?

    2. Two roads diverged in a yellow wood

      Is there a significance as to why the metaphorical path he took in life is in the woods/ yellow wood?

    1. Woodlands, meadows, streams and rivers

      Throughout the poem, Masters intertwines nature and poetry terminology - perhaps nature inspires his poetry. The next line is "blind to it my whole life long". Maybe these woodlands, meadows, streams, and rivers have opened his eyes to a new form of poetry.

    2. But the pine tree makes a symphony thereof.

      Masters uses "pines" in the last line of the poem when he says "while Homer and Whitman roared in the pines"... Maybe the two writers ARE the "pines" or "pine tree" that create a symphony out of weak iambics. This could be his way of praising Homer and Whitman while simultaneously telling other writers to step up their game to Homer and Whitman's level.

    3. Triolets, villanelles, rondels, rondeaus

      these are all different types of poems, which is followed by the line "ballades by the score with the same old thought"; perhaps he keeps writing the same poems over and over; perhaps he is looking for new/different inspiration. It sounds like he is in a familiar place, and perhaps he wants to go somewhere exotic

    1. The faint figure behind seemed to shake the pattern, just as if she wanted to get out.

      This is a physical manifestation of Gilman's feelings toward her husband. She feels trapped all in her house, marriage, and in herself because she cannot control her nervous condition. Her "condition" has turned her husband against her and now it is turning the house against her.

    2. before him, at least, and that makes me very tired

      This is another example of how Gilman is trapped by the opinions/beliefs of her husband. She has to hide her condition from him because she knows he does not believe in it and that he will not indulge her if she lets her condition get the better of her.

    3. what is one to do

      Like Du Bois' metaphorical confinement, Gilman feels trapped by the diagnoses of her brother and husband. They claim that her sickness is in her mind; no one believes in her sickness. She is forced to follow their orders when she knows they won't help her.

    4. He has no patience with faith, an intense horror of superstition,

      Like Adams with the Dynamo, John sees faith and superstition as "sublime forces" that threaten his sense of order. John believes only in empirical proof/ concrete evidence. He has a scientific mind like Adams, who struggled to find the appropriate reaction to art.

    1. being a problem is a strange experience,—peculiar even for one who has never been anything else

      Even though Du Bois has always been different, he never gets used to that feeling. He sees himself how white people see him.

    2. How does it feel to be a problem?

      Du Bois begins the book with this question and this self-conscious sentiment to bring the reader into his world. By using this one phrase the reader can begin to understand the African American's point of view; it feels as though the question is being directed towards the reader which helps the reader to understand the author's contempt.

    3. Between me and the other world there is ever an unasked question

      Du Bois feels disconnected from the rest of the world; he sees himself through the others' eyes; similar to Adams writing about himself in the third person.

      Du Bois feels disconnected from others because he is black in a white-washed, white ruled society

  4. Aug 2015
    1. He had studied Karl Marx and his doctrines of history with profound attention, yet he could not apply them at Paris

      Adams has a scientific mind; he can learn about and store facts in his mind and read up on history and political theories, but when it comes to art he is lost. he tries to compute the art by applying historical contexts to it but it doesn't help

    2. the literary knowledge counted for nothing until some teacher should show how to apply it

      education theme; basically you can read and gain knowledge about things all you want but that knowledge is useless unless you can pass it on or use it to create or do something

    3. Why was she unknown in America? For evidently America was ashamed of her, and she was ashamed of herself, otherwise they would not have strewn fig-leaves so profusely all over her.

      "virgin", women in paintings and sculptures covering themselves with "fig leaves" because their body is shameful- mostly an American sentiment.

      • "they lion grow" = "their lion grows" = "they are lions"
      • the lion feeds off industrial waste
      • "they lion grow" "out of bus ride" purposely incorrect grammar
      • "Earth is eating trees, fence posts" fence posts made from trees/ wood
      • "pig" could mean cop
      • "from 'bow down' come 'rise up'" = dictatorship/ authority beating you down while simultaneously telling you they are on your side/ they have a positive influence
      • "from all my white sins forgiven they feed" the lion is feeding off of white privilege? - children inherit white privilege/ it keeps continuing ("they lion, from my children inherit")
        • maybe the lion is the anger of black Americans burning inside of them because of injustices happening against them, mentioning of "pig" and forgiven white sins, "they lion, from my children inherit" = the lion (burning anger) inherited from the white privilege of narrator's children