Posted in Literary Analysis

The Creature as Satan: In honor of Frankenstein’s 200th anniversary

Classics are stories that have captured the minds and hearts of readers for generations. Their names, their characters, become engrained into our very culture. Whether someone has watched the movie or read the text, the name Frankenstein is known to the vast majority of our society. It conjures pictures of a hulking green monster, lightning filled sky and mad scientists holed up in labs. Despite the inaccuracy of some of these images, the idea of Frankenstein remains the same; a scientist desperately creating a monster from dead parts and bringing it to life. In Shelley’s time, Paradise Lost was one of these classics, and Shelley used its existence and characters to enhance her own work. Due to people’s preconceived knowledge, certain assumptions and connections can be drawn from the use of Paradise Lost in the text. Andrew Green in his work, “Intertextuality in Frankenstein: the influence of Paradise Lost and ‘The Rime of the Ancient Mariner’” comments “Shelley draws in detail on Milton’s great poem, using its main characters to represent or parallel the situations of her own protagonist” (1). These parallels allow for an even deeper understanding of the motivations and personalities of the characters. In Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, the relation and reference to the creation mythos adds depth to a fantastic story. Victor has been compared to God and the creature his Adam, however, based on textual evidence, Mary Shelley placed the creature in the role of Satan from Paradise Lost with Victor still in the role of God.

Continue reading “The Creature as Satan: In honor of Frankenstein’s 200th anniversary”

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Posted in Flash Fiction, Original Fiction

Speed Another Day

Ell’s lips twisted in annoyance, as red and blue lights flashed behind her, the siren letting out a piercing wail. She grumbled loudly as she quickly decelerated pulling onto the shoulder of the road. Pursing her lips, she rolled her window down, tapping her wheel impatiently.

The crunch of boots on gravel quickly reached her, and she turned with a forced smile.

“License and registration, ma’am?”

“Oh shit, Cooper! I thought it was a real cop.”

“Oh no, just me,” he said bitingly, though his eyes twinkled with good humor, as he stuck his thumbs into his belt loops. Continue reading “Speed Another Day”

Posted in Literary Analysis

Eveline’s Dependency on Others

Everyone in life relies on someone, for companionship, for help, to do the things one is unable to do alone. The things one can accomplish with assistance is stated beautifully by Helen Keller, “Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.” Relationships are the foundations of our lives, humans are social creatures, and as such, they need companionship, need affection and love. From the day we are born we are surrounded by people, mothers, fathers, siblings, kinsmen, as we grow people enter our lives, while others depart. People rely on others. Unfortunately, this reliance can be corrupted and distorted into codependency. A relationship can become unequal, or unhealthy, and one or both participants can come to depend heavily on the other, forgetting how to function on their own. In a study by Lindley and Giodano, they defined codependency as, “[a person who] focus so much on what is happening with those around them and on trying to have some control over the lives of others that they lose touch with their own thoughts and feelings. They therefore use control to gain a sense of fulfillment and emotional support from their intimate relationships with others” (60). In “Eveline” by James Joyce, Eveline struggles with her dependency on others and a desire to be independent, resulting in her inability to find her own path. This discord of independency and dependency rules Eveline’s life, resulting in an inner conflict that paralyzes her, trapping her in a stagnant and unfulfilling life.  Continue reading “Eveline’s Dependency on Others”

Posted in Flash Fiction, Original Fiction

Some Comfort

Her hands trembled, caught between a tight grasp and a delicate clutch. The tea cup in her hand was so precious, so fragile, some memento passed down from her Grandmother, the inside was stained a creamy tan from tea with milk, and no matter how many times she washed it, it still smelled faintly of early grey. Her Grandmother adored early grey.

“Is there anything I can do for you?”

Continue reading “Some Comfort”

Posted in Literary Analysis

Faulkner’s Mastery of Portrayal

In “A Rose for Emily”, William Faulkner enhances his story through description using it as a tool for characterization. The characters in this fascinating story would be insipid and vague if not for Faulkner’s mastery of portrayal. Miss Emily is a complicated character who is introduced and made known to us through various flashbacks, which hop through time. The story starts at the end and continues in its untraditional unfolding of time throughout. It is through his descriptions that we are able to garner a deeper understanding of Emily. Continue reading “Faulkner’s Mastery of Portrayal”

Posted in Flash Fiction, Original Fiction

Jacob’s Promise

 

When the temperature of the room dropped a drastic ten degrees in an instant, the woman lounging in a recliner was not the least bit worried. “Jacob is that you?” she queried, exerting enough energy to lift her eyelids.

“Yes,” a young voice replied, thick with confusion.

Her recliner snapped back into a sitting position. “Took you long enough, you’ve been dead for what? Three months. And everyone in town knows you died in the middle of talking.” Her voice betrayed a weariness that her casual words denied.

“You were expecting me?” A young boy no more than seventeen, stuck to the edges of the room, his hunched, curved in posture doing little to hide his displeasure at being in the town’s crazy ladies house.

“Well of course,” He, and the rest of the town, always believed she had a few screws loose and Lucinda didn’t mind convincing him of the fact.

“Of course! Why the hell would you expect a ghost to come calling?”

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Posted in Literary Analysis

Not Merely “Two lovely berries molded on one stem”

In A Midsummer’s Night Dream by William Shakespeare, the main character of the play are almost interchangeable, adding to the delightful confusion and hilarity of the play. Hermia and Helena the two main women from the play, are almost as difficult to distinguish as there names, however, distinguishing characteristics do exists. Continue reading “Not Merely “Two lovely berries molded on one stem””

Posted in Flash Fiction, Original Fiction

Spelunking is for Batman

The flashlight was, of course, dead. The lightbulb could have fried or the battery could have been drained, either way it illuminate absolutely bupkis, which is to say it had become nothing more than a decently heavy sturdy weapon in the case one of the bats, twittering and squeaking in the darkness overhead decided to attack or more unlikely, but more terrifyingly turned into a vampire and attempt to suck my blood. With the dark clawing at my clothes, and shoving it’s way down my throat the creatures of the night were beginning to feel more and more real and less and less like some sort of crazy fantasy.

My voice rasped as I called out for the seventeenth time, yes I was keeping count their was little else to do and gave my mind something to focus on. It was just my fucking luck that I would get lost. There was something about being lost, that sucked all the confidence out of your body and reduced you to a five year old, wandering the halls of the grocery store screaming for your mother. Small, fragile, and very alone, everything was an obstacle, an enemy keeping you from you beloved companions. My foot squelched and I really should have realized, as soon as I shifted my weight, my foot slipped, my ankle rolling, and all my hundred twenty pounds slammed into the cold damp cave floor.

Continue reading “Spelunking is for Batman”

Posted in Literary Analysis

The sympathy of a character: “The Story of an Hour” compared to “A Sorrowful Woman”

In Chopin’s “The Story of an Hour”, Mrs. Mallard, for all intents and purposes, is a women trapped by circumstance. The circumstance of her time, and the society she resides in. She lives in a world where women get married and stayed married; despite their marital bliss—present or otherwise. She is a young woman, who has barely lived her life, and due to the constraints of her society feels imprisoned in her marriage. Her husband was described to be a perfectly acceptable man who “never looked save with love upon her” (16). Mrs. Mallard is trapped in a kind marriage, but a marriage nonetheless. At first, Mrs. Mallard is thoroughly distraught by the death of her husband but as time passes, something changes, “she felt it, creeping out of the sky” and feeling of freedom and relief (15). This was a rather startling reaction, clearly, only a cold, heartless women would have “monstrous joy” at the loss of a spouse (16). Continue reading “The sympathy of a character: “The Story of an Hour” compared to “A Sorrowful Woman””