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  1. #1
    roselyrose1 is offline Newbie
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    Need your help (American literature)

    I want to correct my essay.


    Nathaniel Hawthorn writes about the darker side of human experiences.Comment?

    Any society needs to dream and bring new ideas.For a successful life.For this reason American writers used the short stories to show the every day life and events that happened to this new American man by using either reality or fiction.
    In the Antique Ring and the Ambitious guest Hawthorne is not interested in the physical details but in the soul.He went deeper in the examination in the American mind.
    The Ring infact is a character in the story which makes events changing and dynamic not only an object.So it is an archetype of human constant because its alternate function gives it an aspect of ambivalence and of antonym which represent the double value of human being.
    At the same time its represent promise through these kind of contract each time between man and woman.When the promised is broken,it contains a bad spirit and when the promise not broken , contains a good spirit and after acrossing the ocean it has a good spirit as an illustration that in America the Ring had a red britghtness and in England the Ring had purely brighteness.This shift from a world of corrupt to a world of freedom.Although they speak the same language with their ancestors but they have a great imagination about the future.
    We are fortunate thank god that the human nature is made of antonymic combination.
    So man could walking in the good side or in the bad one it depands on him.


    Any help would be appreciated!

  2. #2
    konungursvia's Avatar
    konungursvia is offline Key Member
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    Re: Need your help (American literature)

    Literary criticism is a particular form of communication, with norms you should follow:

    a) you don't have to explain why the author wrote stories or why literature is written
    b) use the present tense throughout
    c) don't try and draw a moral or lesson, just explore the images expressed in the stories
    d) mention how Hawthorne depicts human nature, along with its negative, constraining, socially constricted side

    That should make it better.

  3. #3
    Monticello's Avatar
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    Re: Need your help (American literature)

    "Words -- so innocent and powerless as they are, as standing in a dictionary, how potent for good and evil they become in the hands of one who knows how to combine them." ~ Nathaniel Hawthorne
    Hi roselyrose1,

    Regarding the previous advice about “Literary criticism [as] a particular form of communication, with norms you should follow, you may wish to consider the following on-line wiki articles:

    (1) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Literary_criticism; (2) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Literary_theory.

    Both articles explore in some detail the question of genre, as well as an author’s “intentionality,” i.e., his motivation for writing. In fact, when considering the vast output of modern literary criticism, it is impossible for one to imagine any supposed governing “norm” that would exclude the critic’s consideration of an author’s choice of genre or his intentionality. And when one considers that today Hawthorne is arguably best known for his short stories, then any criticism of Hawthorne’s short stories that fails to mention genre and intentionality could likewise be seen as failing its readers.

    Equally mystifying is the suggested “norm” to “use the present tense throughout when writing literary criticism. A quick tour through any of the online literary criticism links provided in this limited Google search reveals such a rule to be a mere contrivance that serves no discernible purpose -- except to unnecessarily hamper the critic’s expression and style.

    And finally, the very idea that there should be any “norm” that advises against “draw[ing] a moral or lesson – especially when the criticism involves Nathaniel Hawthorne’s oeuvre – is advice to which one should absolutely pay no heed.

    Peruse the links returned from the previous Google search, (which I again copy here): moral+lesson+Nathaniel+Hawthorne+criticism and you will find that those instincts that prompted you to consider an allusion to a moral or lesson in your brief criticism of Hawthorne are instincts that other more experienced critics have too followed – in vast numbers! Why?

    Hawthorne’s well-known Puritan heritage and accompanying burden of guilt are compelling enough reasons:
    Hawthorne was heavily influenced by his Puritan heritage. One of Hawthorne’s forefathers was Judge Hathorne, who presided over the Salem witch trials in 1692. Hawthorne carried so much guilt for his ancestor’s participation in the infamous trials that he felt compelled to change his last name, adding a "w" to change it from Hathorne to Hawthorne. Hawthorne’s sensitivity to guilt is clearly present in the Scarlet Letter, as well as some of his other works.
    ( -from:http://www.geocities.com/ibenglish_chs/hawbio.html)
    In summary, as you work toward a finished draft of your Hawthorne criticism, continue to pay heed to those instincts that have carried you thus far. You're on a promising path. Follow it!
    Last edited by Monticello; 19-Apr-2009 at 03:29.

  4. #4
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    Re: Need your help (American literature)

    A further note, after reading other material....

    We may justifiably attempt an analysis of a writer's oeuvre, his entire output, as well as his autobiography, but no reliable methodology allows us to predict one from the other; as to the far smaller scale of the individual literary work, such as the short stories you are studying, we are unable to say anything about anything, except insofar as we stick to the text itself. Neither the author's life, nor his career, is manifested sufficiently in a short story to say anything of it in the context of the story. There is a good deal, however, that can be said of the text itself, i.e. what is in the story. To attempt further inferences between biographies and short stories of fiction is fruitless, and may be compared to the statement "Picasso's blue period coincides with his renewed distaste for the banana."

    We use the present tense in literary criticism simply because the time of reading must not be confused with the time of the fabula, the story and its plot, as the diegesis and its chronology are unrelated to the time of our criticism or of our initial reading of the fiction. Using the present not only avoids this confusion but neatly separates fact from fiction, and allows the literary work of art to transcend time, to speak for all time. It's a lovely convention. Like spelling, only more useful.

    Children's stories often have a moral, such as "don't assume you will win just because you are ahead" which belongs to the Tortoise and the Hare. Great works of art, however, written for adults, seldom have anything so mundane or so simple that can be extrapolated from them. So when it's not there, it's not very wise to try and see it.
    Shakespeare's Antony and Cleopatra, for instance, asks the question of human nature: Is it better to live for pleasure, as does Cleopatra, or for glory and empire, which can only be achieved through duty, by eschewing pleasure? No answer is given -- both lovers die together, and the reader or spectator is allowed to think about the answer himself. A fine work of art.

    Finally, go to your library and read some literary criticism regarding Hawthorne. You will find no one there cites wikipedia. That site is good for satisfying some curiosity, but few serious educators would recommend it as an authority. It's better to read a variety of real experts, and then to arrive at an imformed opinion.

    Hopefully this will help. Enjoy!

  5. #5
    Monticello's Avatar
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    Re: Need your help (American literature)

    The greatest obstacle to being heroic is the doubt whether one may not be going to prove one’s self a fool; the truest heroism is to resist the doubt; and the profoundest wisdom, to know when it ought to be resisted, and when it be obeyed. ~ Hawthorne (The Blithedale Romance, Ch. 2.)

    Hi roselyrose1,

    Quote Originally Posted by konungursvia
    Finally, go to your library and read some literary criticism regarding Hawthorne. You will find no one there cites wikipedia. That site is good for satisfying some curiosity, but few serious educators would recommend it as an authority. It's better to read a variety of real experts, and then to arrive at an imformed opinion.
    Good advice!

    Wikipedia has been not cited here as any ultimate source, of course, but merely for its ready online accessibility. So by all means do seek out a wider library of resources than may be available here online. There, you will be sure to find thoughtful essays on the topics of literary criticism in general, as well as literary criticism as it pertains specifically to Hawthorne. The most scholarly among these selected sources are sure to extend the discussions taken up in those online sources I have already pointed you toward as a start for your research here. (Within the body of these collected sources, I'm also quite sure that you'll find more than a few who have stepped outside that "lovely convention" of confining the writing of their criticisms to the present tense.) And once having done this, you are also sure to find ample justification to continue to follow your intuitive response to the two of Hawthorne's short stories that you are considering for your current project.

    As you extend your research on Hawthorne, remember that he is not a Picasso with a blue period or a Shakespeare penning works for the stage, but uniquely himself, and that his life's influences and how these influences might have affected his writing of the two stories you are considering do surely have a place within your criticism.

    Quote Originally Posted by konungursvia
    Children's stories often have a moral, such as "don't assume you will win just because you are ahead" which belongs to the Tortoise and the Hare. Great works of art, however, written for adults, seldom have anything so mundane or so simple that can be extrapolated from them. So when it's not there, it's not very wise to try and see it.
    And when it's there, it would follow that it's very unwise to be blind to it. Likewise, it would be unwise to entertain the thought that a writer such as Hawthorne would expose allegorical themes and their implied morals at the same level as one would expect to find in children's literature. This link: http://www.polk.edu/It/Library/classguides/JRyan/enc1141notes.htm provides a commentary that may serve as beginning research for your reflection upon these elements within another of Hawthorne's short stories: Young Goodman Brown. (Page down to the section entitled: STORY OVERVIEWS/NOTES; the brief commentary on Young Goodman Brown follows immediately.)

    So by all means continue to explore sources both online and off. Among the most scholarly sources that you encounter, you are sure to find much to support your instincts regarding Hawthorne specifically and literary criticism in general.

    Good luck!
    Last edited by Monticello; 19-Apr-2009 at 10:58.

  6. #6
    Lady Hawk is offline Member
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    Re: Need your help (American literature)

    Quote Originally Posted by roselyrose1 View Post
    I want to correct my essay.


    Nathaniel Hawthorn writes about the darker side of human experiences.Comment?

    AnyAll societyies needs to dream and bring new ideas.F for a successful life. For this reason, American writers used the short stories to show the every day life and events that happened to thisthe new American manaverage American. by using either reality or fiction.
    In the "Antique Ring" and the "Ambitious gGuest", Hawthorne is not interested in the physical details, but in the soul. He wentdigs deeper in the examination in the Americanof the human mind.
    The ring, in fact, is not only an object, but is a dynamic character in the story which makes events changeing and dynamic. So It is an archetype of human constant because its alternate function gives it an aspect of ambivalence and of antonym which represent the double value of human being. (Paraphrase this in your own words; it is obvious that you copied it directly from another text)
    At the same time, its represents promise through these kind of contract each time between man and woman. (1. Incomplete sentence that needs to be paraphrased) When the promised is broken, it contains a bad spirit and when the promise not brokenis kept, contains a good spirit. and After acrossing the ocean, it has a good spirit. (Are you talking about the ring?) aAs an illustration, that in America the Ring had a red britghtness and in England the Ring had purely brightener.when the ring was in America, it was a brilliant red. When it was in England, it was a bright red. This symbolized a shift from a world of corruption to a world of freedom. Although they speak the same language of the past with their ancestors, but they have a great imagination about the future.
    We are fortunate, thank gGod, that the human nature is made of antonymic combination.(find a synonym for this)
    So man could walking in the good side or in the bad one it depands on him.Man can walk on either side, the choice is up to him.


    Any help would be appreciated!
    1. For a successful life (not a sentence: prepositional phrase0
    2. Weak in area of punctuation (comma after all introductory phrases)
    3. Capitalize Title Words, except articles and prepositions
    4. infact is two words and is an appositive set apart by commas
    5. So it is an archetype of human constant because its alternate function gives it an aspect of ambivalence and of antonym which represent the double value of human being. (This sentence does not match the rest of your paragraph, I would consider it to be plagiarized)
    6. Numerous spelling errors: acrossing; brightness misspelled 2 different ways; dapend
    7. This shift from a world of corrupt to a world of freedom.Although they speak the same language with their ancestors but they have a great imagination about the future. (Neither of these are sentences-need reworking)
    8. When the promised is broken,it contains a bad spirit and when the promise not broken , contains a good spirit and after acrossing the ocean it has a good spirit as an illustration that in America the Ring had a red britghtness and in England the Ring had purely brightener. (Run on sentence-unclear)
    9. This shift from a world of corrupt to a world of freedom.Although they speak the same language with their ancestors but they have a great imagination about the future. (Run on sentence, unclear)
    10.We are fortunate thank god that the human nature is made of antonymic combination. (Use a synonym for antonymic that will match your level of writing; otherwise, I would consider plagiarism; also, thank God would be set apart by commas as it is an appositive)

    I have taken the time to go through this thoroughly in order for you to see your weaknesses. These are the areas that you must work on for any future writing to gain strength. Also, please look carefully at each of your sentences. Some are very poorly constructed, then they jump to perfect syntax, spelling and grammar-this is a red flag for any teacher telling them that you copied the text from somewhere else. Be very careful of this. I hope this helps to encourage you. Practice, practice, practice!

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