I am happy to say that I very much enjoyed the novel To Kill a Mockingbird. Although it was initially hard to ‘get into’, it soon became engaging and difficult to put down. My favourite character is Scout because she thinks all humans are equal. I also admire her courage and subtle feminism. My favourite section in the novel was the trial because it had excellent imagery and was easy to visualize. I was happy when Scout finally met Boo Radley because she was able to see his true character, despite the rumors. All in all, I am glad to have read this novel because it taught me about the way of life in this era, and outlined some unique morals and themes. To Kill a Mockingbird is my favourite book I have ever read!
This chapter increased my dislike of Aunt Alexandra because she would like to fire Calpurnia. I do not think that Calpurnia deserves to be fired because she has supported Atticus for a long time and helped raise the children. I am surprised that Dill has chosen to run away and made it all the way to Maycomb by himself. Although most parents would be very nervous and freak out in this situation, I think that Atticus handled it very well, as he remained calm. Chapter 15 proved to me Scout’s bravery when she followed her father to town. I am curious to know why the group of men bully Atticus. It is very likely that Scout saved her father’s life when she started up a conversation with Mr. Cunningham. It made me question criminals at large, and wonder if they would still menace others if they thought about their family while doing so. I also questioned who Mr. Underwood is and why he supports Atticus, when most people in town dislike him.
Chapter 12 was an especially interesting section of the novel where we witness Jem’s maturity and shunning of Scout. Apart from being ignored by her brother, Dill and Atticus are both busy this summer and Scout worries that she will be left alone. However, Calpurnia entertains Scout by taking her to a ‘black church’, which is Scout’s first real interaction with multiple African-American people. There, Scout learns more details of her father’s trial. I think that Calpurnia’s actions will spark a fuse of acceptance within Scout and lessen her racism towards coloured people. In chapter 13, we are introduced to Aunt Alexandra who shares different viewpoints with her brother, Atticus. Although Atticus does a fine job as a father in the eyes of Jem and Scout, Aunt Alexandra believes that the children are lacking a feminine influence. I do not like Aunt Alexandra because she has many outdated beliefs, and is too proud of her heritage. One question that has yet been answered is why the children refer to their father by his first name. It seems to me as a lack of respect, especially in the setting of the novel, although Atticus does not feel that way.
So far, I am enjoying the class novel, To Kill A Mockingbird. I think that although the novel was not recently written, the story is still engaging and somewhat applicable. My favourite character is Dill because of his adventurous personality. While some of the games he plays may be silly, he is a true risk taker. I am upset when I read about Scout in school because I think that she is treated unfairly. In addition, I am also impressed that she has a passion for reading at her age. One question I would ask is: Does Scout care for her maid, Calpurnia, and think of her as a mother figure? My hope for the novel is that Scout begins enjoying school.
Reflecting on my goals from first term, I am confident that I have succeeded in achieving them. My first goal was to learn how to write an effective essay and improve my writing skills. As an English assignment, I wrote my first descriptive essay, and learned of the fundamental parts that make up an essay. My second goal was to read more novels; as schoolwork was getting in the way of my free time. I planned to do so by allocating 15 minutes nightly dedicated to reading. Thankfully, I am usually able to manage my time and fit it in, and I’ve even finished the specific book I planned on reading. Lastly, my goal was to practice my reading comprehension and formation of responses to stories and articles. In preparation for the English mid-year exam, I often challenged my comprehension skills and learned key factors that make my responses successful. Overall, I am surprised and proud of myself that I was able to achieve all of my English-related goals. I look forward to setting new ones!
‘Uglies’ is the first book in a series that I have finished and thoroughly enjoyed.
J Crew recently received criticism for its triple zero women’s clothing size. In my opinion, I think that there is no problem with a store carrying small sizes, as long as it carries large sizes as well. I do not think that there is anything wrong with the idea of a size zero because every woman is a different size, and some are smaller than others. Similarly, I do not think that the idea of a size triple large is wrong because the clothing is made for people of that size.
I think that apps are a waste of time because they are addictive, and often take up my time which I would otherwise use productively. My favourite app is called Instagram. Instagram is an app where you can create an account and post pictures, as well as look at your friends pictures. Many celebrities also have an Instagram account; fans enjoy this very much because they are able to learn about them. I enjoy Instagram because I can choose which accounts I’d like to see, and the pictures which appear on my Instagram feed are of interest to me.
Catharsis is a term described by Aristotle as a figurative cleansing of emotions such as pity and fear, having an effect of tragic drama on its audience. The ending of the novel, Of Mice and Men, leaves the reader relieved because Lennie, a dangerous and unpredictable character, dies. Although his best friend is upset by this, I think that he, and the rest of the characters, realize it was necessary. If the novel were to have ended with Lennie and George escaping and starting their lives over again, the book would have come to a full circle with an insignificant end. Ending the book in such manner would frustrate readers because of the uncertainty to come. Thus, I believe that Steinbeck made the right decision in killing Lennie for the reason that representations of death in literature leave the audience feeling relieved rather than depressed because they understand that every story must have a meaningful end.
The picture above shows Lennie and George moments before Lennie’s death.
My three goals for English this term include:
1. Learn how to write an effective essay and continue improving my writing skills. I would like to use all of the critique I have received and apply it to my work for the future.
2. Read more! Unfortunately, schoolwork often gets in the way of my free time, and it is hard for me to read for the purpose of expanding my vocabulary. I will try my best to allocate at least 15 minutes of reading every night in order to do so.
3. Practice my reading comprehension and formation of responses to stories, articles, etc. I will use English class assignments to do so.
I have heard good reviews for this novel, and will hopefully start reading it soon. When I find new vocabulary in it, I will write it down along with a definition in my journal.
46 pages through the novel Of Mice and Men, I am happily surprised. Having heard negative reviews from friends, I was apprehensive to start reading. However, I think Steinbeck did a great job with grabbing the reader’s attention from the start. I especially enjoy reading the novel while listening to the audio book because it adds more life to the story. I am looking forward to completing the novel and searching for the message of the story.
There are many different cover illustrations for the novel Of Mice and Men… This is my favourite!