Fahrenheit 451 Round 3 Discussion

Pieces of literature often make us wonder. A perfect example, is the book I am currently reading, Fahrenheit 451. While reading for our literature circles, I had the responsibility of being the Summerizer and Travel Tracker. While reading, I found a line from the book particularly interesting. It brought some ideas to mind concerning symbolism, extended metaphors and what I think touch on universal themes in the book. Here is the excerpt from the book that I would like you to consider:

  • “He lay across the room from her, on a winter island separated by an empty sea. She talked to him for what seemed like a long while and she talked about this and she talked about that and it was only words. . .” (Bradbury 42).

Symbolism Discussion Topic:  In this passage, Montag is comparing his and Mildred’s beds to a winter island separated by an empty sea. Then, he completely ignores everything she says.  Bradbury is using a metaphor to show just how bad their marriage has gotten.  How does Montag’s disconnection with Mildred effect the theme of the story? How do you think the couple got this way? Do you think they are other marriages in Montag’s society that are just as bad?

Bradbury, Ray. Fahrenheit 451. New York: Ballentine, 2008. Print.

Flowers for Algernon Discussion Post

Dear Charlie Gordon,

I am writing you to tell you I am so, so sorry. Not only for everything that happened with your operation, but for the way I treated you. I teased you, and found your lack of understanding to be funny. I invited my friends to join in on the “fun” too. Once your intelligence increase due to the operation began, and you realized what we were doing, I felt even worse than I did before. I really started to be nice to you and stick up for you once it was too late. How could I be so dumb? I’m ashamed of what I’ve done. There hasn’t been a night since then where I slept okay. But I promise you this apology isn’t being written to help me with guilt. It is sincere.

You becoming so smart all of a sudden really scared me. It’s not right what they did to you. Using science to change you like that.  What if they start trying to do that to everybody? I just don’t feel like its human, messing with our genes and all.  I wanted to tell you this all in person, but I heard news that you left town. Where did you run off too? Are you all right? If I ever find out where you went, I’ll be sure to send you this note.

-JOE CARP

Who are Prometheus and Gaea?

Based on the research I have conducted, here’s what I have found out about both Prometheus, and Gaea.

Prometheus: According to Greek Mythology, Prometheus was the wisest Titian, and his name actually meant “forethought”.  He was known as the benefactor and protector of man. He gave them gifts, such as fire. He tricked Zeus into letting people give gods the worst parts of the animals that they sacrificed. For this, Zeus was angry and punished him with the torture of having an eagle eat his organs while he was still alive until he agreed to Zeus’s terms, and if he didn’t he would have to do so to Zeus’s children. He never gave in  though, because Hercules came and saved him.

Gaea: Gaea was “the personification of the Earth”.  She was the second being to emerge at creation, so she had no parents. She was worshiped on Earth as the universal mother.

 

 

Works Cited:

“Gaea.” Gaea. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 May 2014.

“Prometheus.” Prometheus. N.p., m.d. Web. 05 May 2014.

Spring Break 2014

Saturday, April 12– This day was probably my favorite out of my entire break. I got to sleep in, and had enough time to get ready for the busy day ahead of me. My dad came to visit us from New York for the first 3 days of break, and we were supposed to be going to Carowinds. He didn’t arrive here until about 12:30. It turns out that he brought his girlfriend Loretta and her daughter Jessica too. What a pleasant surprise… My older brother Brandon did not to want come, but the rest of us still went and had a good day. At around 6 or 7 , we left the park and decided to just settle for CiCi’s pizza for dinner.

Sunday, April 13–  Brandon and his wife, Toni, came along with us on this day. We visited Mcdowell Nature Preserve and had a picnic from our blue cooler there by the nature center. We didn’t eat sand witches or much of any real food. Just small things like chips and salsa because we knew we were going out to eat later.  That day was probably the only one that actually had good weather the entire break. It was nice and sunny, but not too hot, especially under the shade of the trees on the walking trails. We stopped and looked out at the lake for a while, and then went to dinner at Golden Corral.

Monday, April 14- This day reminded me a lot of my childhood. My dad took Evan, Loretta, Jessica and I to go visit Freedom Park, which I went to all the time when I was younger. We walked around the pond there and ate another picnic under a huge oak tree. I sure did eat a lot over spring break. After we left the park, we went into downtown Charlotte because Jessica and Loretta had never been. We saw some statues and sculptures and took lots of pictures, then we visited an art gallery. A few hours later we left the city because we knew the parking meter was running low and that everyone was hungry. We then ate at Tony’s pizza. Another one of my favorite places as a kid.

Tuesday, April 15- Today was the day that my dad was supposed to leave town and head back to New York. Brandon, Toni, Evan, Jessica, my dad, Loretta and I all ate breakfast together at IHop. I ate New York Cheesecake pancakes and it was probably one of the best things I had ever tasted. Then my dad drove me to Carowinds and we said our goodbyes. He says he is coming to visit again for 8th grade graduation, though. I stayed at Carowinds with my friends from my old school Rylie and Reagan. Then its started to rain so they left and it wasn’t time for my mom to pick me up yet so I met up with Sami, Westin, and Jalyn and then the park closed early due to the rain so we all left cold and wet. I was pretty miserable, but overall it was a great day.

Wednesday & Thursday, April 16/17- I didn’t do much of anything on these days. On Wednesday I went out to eat with my friend Trinity and her mom. Then we watched a lot of movies and I spent the night at her house. On Thursday we woke up pretty late, and I went home at around 5 P.M

Friday, Saturday & Sunday, April 18-20- I didn’t really do anything on these days either. Just relaxed. I snacked a lot and talked on the phone with friends for the most of the time.   I had to write the first draft of my research paper for Mrs. Holley though, and that took me about 4 hours on Saturday.

Back to school, Monday April 21-  My least favorite part of the entire thing was waking up Monday morning. It took me an entire hour just to get out of bed. I’m really sick of school.  But hey good news, summers almost here.

Are we spending too much time on our smart phones?

Article of the week assignment:

Today, I am reflecting on the following article I found off of Kelly Gallagher’s website.  Click here to read it.

 

One of the discussion questions added at the bottom of the article is “Are you afraid of being bored? Reflect.”  My honest answer is yes, I am afraid of being bored. The thought of sitting there and doing nothing really does bother me. I think I got this way because I’m on my phone so much. I pick up my phone the second I wake up, and sleep with it nearby almost every night. I use it way too much, and I know I’m not the only one in my age group guilty of this. I also agree with Nicholas Carr’s point about the fact that we aren’t thinking. We are simply browsing information that other people’s thinking put out for us.

Another thing I’d like to talk about, was the comment made by Regina Dugan in the article. “I find the quietest times of my life speak the loudest.” I  think that Dugan means that when we are sitting quietly by ourselves, we notice a lot more about what we’ve been up to than when we are running around our busy lives. I think that we need to start using our smartphones less, and start thinking for ourselves more. Everyone needs a little bit of time to reflect on themselves every now and then. We become so unaware of our actions when we use our smartphones, or at least I do. I’m constantly reminding myself to put my phone away while others are speaking to me because I know that if I don’t, I won’t be able to fully process what they are saying to me.

The Fault In Our Stars by John Green: Approach Paper:

Summary The Fault In Our Stars by John Green is about a sixteen year old girl who is dying of cancer found in her lungs. Hazel admits to having depression one summer, so almost immediately her mother makes her join a support group with a lot of other kids and teens who also have cancer. Here, she sits next to a boy named Issac, and they become fast friends. Although Hazel really hates coming to the support group, she doesn’t mind Issac. In one of the group’s meetings, Issac brings a friend of his to the support group who used to have cancer himself, Augustus Waters. Augustus is very intrigued by Hazel Grace, and eventually they start spending more and more time together. They are both extremely intelligent for their age, and start discussing books. Hazel asks Augustus to read her favorite book An Imperial Affliction, and he does.

Augustus somehow manages to get in contact with the author (Peter van Houton)  and for a gift, he brings her (and her mother, of course) to meet him in New Amsterdam. He turns out to be a not-so-nice man, and they leave almost 30 minutes within meeting him, a huge disappointment. Augustus and Hazel still have fun in New Amsterdamn however, until he gives her the news that his cancer is back and worse than before, and he doesn’t have long. Issac and Hazel write Eulogies for Augustus and share them with him.

Augustus really does die and Hazel shares another Eulogy she wrote that’s more appropriate for his family. She’s shocked with chaos and grief at the death of Augustus and is very angry when she see’s Van Houton there. But instead of being rude like before, the book closes as he presents her with a eulogy that Augustus wrote for Hazel before he died.

Character Analysis:

Hazel: caring, dependent, brave

Augustus: loving, smart, poetic

Hazel’s mom: hopeful, curious, loyal

 

Key Passage:

“Don’t tell me you’re one of those people who becomes their disease.” -pg 127

I think that this very small quote given by Hazel is a huge huge deal. Its an “identity quote”. She is one of the people that doesn’t believe in exploiting her disease to get all the things she wants. She doesn’t want to let it be a part of her identity. She avoids talking about her cancer as much as possible. She doesn’t necessarily remain optimistic, but she doesn’t try and make it a huge part of her.

Discussion Questions:

1. If you had cancer and didn’t have long to live, who would you spend your time with? Why?

2. Hazel is extremely disappointed when Van Houton turns out to be a crazy drunk. Tell of a time you were extremely disappointed.

3. Hazel feels like she is a “grenade” to anyone around her, and she doesn’t want to get close to people because she knows that if she does, they will be hurt if she died. This is why she avoided people. If you knew you were going to die, would you try to affect as many lives as possible with a good, positive message? Or avoid people and try not to hurt them, like Hazel Grace did?

 

 

Journal Entry

For my individual extension activity, I’m writing a journal entry from the viewpoint of Fahrenheit 451’s character, Faber.

Dear Journal,

Today, That man I met in the park called me, then later came to my home. At first, I thought it was a setup for him to come burn all my precious books. After all, he is a firemen. But when he arrived, it turns out he had a bible with him. He actually came to ask me for help. Guy Montag, the FIREMAN asking me for help. I was completely stunned. How could I help this man? I am but a simple coward who stays indoors all the time. But Montag accidentally came up with one of the most outstanding plans I’ve ever heard of At first, I thought he was crazy, joking, or both. He thought that maybe, we could plant books in the houses of firemen all across the country. Brilliant! But  more the man spoke, the more things made sense. He said we would need a printing press to make more and more copies of the books. Good thing I know a lot of people. I truly am an awful, cowardice man, though. I gave him one of my in-ear listening devices so that he could do all of the dirty work, while I sit in the comfort of my home, simply advising him on what to do. Anyways, I must go now. We are going to further discuss the details.

-Until next time, Faber.

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