Sunday, August 31, 2014

No Book is Original

Every poem, song, and even book has some sort of connection to something else. In order for an author of a novel to begin to write a story, they must learn to pull from their memory of things seen, read, heard, but most importantly learned through out life. By pulling from the author’s memory, it allows the writer the opportunity to obtain a much larger imagination or creativity bank. Thomas Foster, the author, begins this chapter by using the image of the connect the dots pictures that young children complete. He states that depending on the child, some are able to naturally already know what fun, silly image will be shown by the dots when connected, while other children might not be able to see the image as easily until the dots are connected. Foster then goes on to say that with time, patience, and practice sooner or later it will gradually be easier to tell what the picture is without connecting the dots. The example of young children doing connect the dots is a nice way to use imagery in order to connect to the authors point; that when reading various types of literature, being able to begin spotting different literary devices within the takes practice.
            Next the author discusses the novel “Going After Cacciato,” written by Tim O’Brien, which is a novel designed to be a war story. The main character, Paul Berlin, in the second section of the book creates his own ideal world after falling into a hole since the first section of the book is mostly the main characters experience in the actual war zone. By causing the main character to fall in a hole after trying to run or avoid the situation at hand, O’Brien has created an allusion to the story of Alice in Wonderland. Not only is the allusion to Alice in Wonderland relevant to O’ Brien’s war story, but similar events if not exactly the same can also be seen in movies when a character tries to escape a situation, but during their attempted escape the character either falls into a hole or in some form becomes either unconscious or extremely deep in thought. Yet all in the end later wakes up or comes out of their deep personal thoughts to only realize that the entire thing was nothing less than a fantasy. The movie the “Wizard of Oz” and even the black remake of the “Wizard of Oz”, “The Wiz”, showcase a young woman trying to escape either a twister or chasing after a dog causing them to have an accident that allows to drift into their fantasy land, in which the main goal is to return home. Once they returned though everything is believed to be only a dream with people they knew portrayed as something new and different. In “Going After Cacciato” the main character creates a character with their imagination of a woman to guide and lead him based of a woman he saw, but one could say that the woman character was actually Sacajawea from the Lewis and Clark expeditions.
            Foster uses another example by referring to the novel “Wise Children.” The book constantly refers to Shakespeare considering that the family in the book depends on Shakespeare performances in order to support the family. Shakespeare’s character of Ophelia can be seen as Tiffany, a character in the book, because she goes insane then drowns. Although a stretch it could also slightly connect to the book “Beloved” because the mother’s child was drowned, but later comes back as an older version of the drowned child to try and constantly keep the mother’s attention for herself.

            Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde is also a story the many authors pull from. It is a prime example of a book that can be used in various ways to create a new story. Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde leaves such a strong imprint on the mind that aspects of it can be seen in not only literature but also tv, more specifically cartoons. There was an episode of “Scooby- Doo, Where Are You!” in which the mystery incorporated gang had to solve the mystery of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Not only is Jekyll and Hyde in Scooby-Doo, but also in classic Bugs Bunny.


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