DRAMA, POETRY, AND SHORT FICTION 4
Reading drama differs fundamentally from comprehension of poetry and fiction because the former uses heightened language. Additionally, I found drama interesting because the dialogs are specific to the characters. The stage directions made it easy for me to follow the plot.
My favorite play was “Trifles” by Susan Glaspell because of the intensity of the plot and the fact that a wife could murder her husband and hide the evidence so close to the police officers. However, it takes fellow women for the police to unravel the murder mystery. The play signifies the importance of respecting everyone irrespective of gender.
In “Trifles” by Susan Glaspell (1906), I identified various themes such as women and femininity, justice and judgment, isolation, freedom and confinement, as well as masculinity. In A Doll’s House by Henrik Ibsen (1879), the overarching themes are the sacrifices that women make, parental obligations, and the unreliability of appearances. Lastly, the main themes in Othello by William Shakespeare (1603) are jealousy, race, gender, sex and marriage, manipulation, warfare, identity, and hate.
In reading poems, I learned that poets use figurative language all the time and so the reader has to discern the deeper meaning as opposed to the shallow connotation. Equally, I learned to evaluate and appreciate the various literary devices such as meter and rhyme.
The course taught me that certain elements must always appear in a poem. For instance, a poem ought to have stanzas, which are a series of lines that are grouped together but separated by space. Additionally, poems must have form, lines, rhyme, and pattern. One other important element is euphony, which essentially means a combination of compatible or melodious sounds that make reading a poem a pleasant experience. For example, “To His Coy Mistress," by Andrew Marvell has lines but they are not separated by space. On the other hand, "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock,” by T.S. Elliot has a form that is essentially a dramatic monologue. "The Sacred," by Stephen Dunn has six stanzas, while "Daddy," by Sylvia Plath has a distinctive rhyme, which is ABABC
The poem I enjoyed most was “To His Coy Mistress” by Andrew Marvell because of its mystic nature. The narrator is a nameless man who addresses a woman who equally has no biography. Others I enjoyed most are "The Red Wheelbarrow," by William Carlos Williams, "My Papa`s Waltz," by Theodore Roethke, and "Ah, Are You Digging on My Grave?" Thomas Hardy.
Reading short fiction taught me that most of the events take place in a single day and that they often involve conflicts.
The first was “Where Are You Going, Where Have you Been” by Joyce Carol Oates. I liked the short fiction because of the themes that it explored, which are fantasy and reality. I have always been fascinated by fantasy because it enables an individual to escape reality temporarily. The other fiction I fancied was Richard Wright’s “The Man Who Was Almost a Man” because of the eccentrics of the characters, such as Mr. Hawkins, Dave Saunders, and Mr. and Mrs. Saunders.
Sarah Orne Jewett’s, “A White Heron” was interesting because it is short and tight but has numerous sub-stories. John Updike’s "A&P,” is creatively written. It handles contemporary problems and presents solutions that might be applicable in the modern world. Raymond Carver’s "Cathedral," is creative because it explores drinking as a contemporary problem. Lastly, James Joyce’s “Araby” is tightly presented. The death of Father Flynn is mystical however, his strange behavior towards his death could explain the cause.
The genre I enjoyed reading the most is the short story. The aboveshort stories helped me to examine conflict in the society andexamine various ways people use to solve them. I was fascinated bythe variety of conflicts and the ingenuity of solutions. The factthat the stories are short helped me to follow the plots easily.