The Decline of Cultural Literacy and the Educational System’s Responsibility

In E.D. Hirsch’s essay, Literacy and Cultural Literacy, he proclaims that America’s cultural literacy has declined, and that cultural literacy is the most important element in a functioning democratic society. His most important claim is that the members of this society must have shared background information in order to communicate with one another. Communication is […]

A New Hardwood Floor

I grabbed one side of the blanket as Garrett, my friend who decided to visit for the weekend, grabbed the other. Our plan was simple, pick up the blanket that was a holding place for three one-gallon cans of paint, paintbrushes, light bulb covers, and several random screws. I just wanted to remove the obstruction […]

The Antithesis of Fate: Self-determination in White Teeth

In her novel, White Teeth, Zadie Smith argues against fate and the appearance of randomness that the concept of predestination brings along with it. Her counter-argument is the idea of self-determination and its consequences. Interweaving the ideas together one can see that she ultimately shows that fate has nothing to do with what transpires in […]

The Integration of Social Classes to an Age of Freedom

Using two quintessential modern characters of the Victorian Era, John Fowles seeks to challenge the social conventions of the past in his novel, The French Lieutenant’s Woman. In the 1960s, a time when sex marks the dawn of a new era, Fowles felt the need to throw the sexual revolution into the modern time period. […]

Gothic Fiction and Its Revelations

In Matthew Gregory Lewis’s The Monk and Anne Radcliffe’s The Italian, each writer seeks to shock the audience by revealing a mystifying secret unknown to the main characters. Radcliffe and Lewis unleash familial secrets in order to put their readers into a state of astonishment. This element of surprise is essential to Gothic fiction, in […]

Preparation for Observing the Literacy Habits of Alabama Toddlers

I was asked a few days ago what kind of reading I do outside of class, other than my school work and the book I was currently discussing. I had no idea how to answer that question. Maybe I was caught a little off guard, but I seriously hadn’t given it much thought; which I […]

Familial Obligations

Metamorphosis, by Franz Kafka, is a story of change, or the movement of one phase of life to the next. There is a complete turn of Gregor’s character physically and mentally throughout the story. The most striking themes portrayed are the unpleasantness of work, the skewed view of life, and the collapse of Gregor as […]

Chicago Left Me Inadequate and Dirty

Velma deceitfully slides up to Roxie, trying to convince her to team up as an act. She bursts out into a jazzy exhibition with every bit of natural entertaining ability she possesses. Roxie, showing her true colors since she is now in the limelight, fends off Velma as swiftly as she had come. Now the […]