Upon learning about One State and its rise, could you see our civilization eventually falling into a similar or even the same type of extreme totalitarianism. With the huge boom in technology over the recent years and the continued strides in advancements that show no sign of slowing, does this push us closer to living life like they do in the book. What is stopping us from reaching that state and is it a factor that is strong enough to remain permanent through many centuries to come?
At the beginning of the novel, D-503 lives his life according to the Table and the rules of One State, he is efficient and feels he has a purpose. As soon as he comes into contact with I-330 his efficiency begins to break down. D-503 says, “The woman had a disagreeable effect upon me, like an irrational component of an equation which you cannot eliminate.” D-503 begins to change how does this change compare and contrast with Marlow or any of the different characters we have discussed in class? What does I-330 symbolize in this text? What impact does I-330 have on D-503?
This past week we discussed the society of the One Nation in Yevgeny Zamyatin’s dystopian novel We. Imagine for a minute that it was you living in this world, living with such efficiency and such a planned purpose that nothing can ultimately go wrong. Thinking about Taylorism and sacrificing freedom for efficiency, would you want to be a part of the One Nation?
Then take that thought one step further, imagine you are building your own One Nation society, what aspects would you use or not use in this society?
In Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness, Conrad explores British and Belgian imperialism in Africa through Marlow’s narrative of his exploration. The treatment of the “other” in the novel often frightens the contemporary reader. Conrad’s vivid description of African people reveals something about Marlow, and maybe Conrad himself.
My main question is this: what does Conrad’s treatment of the “other” in the novel reveal about Europe? We held similar discussions to this when we read Dracula – do you see any parallels in Dracula and Heart of Darkness with how they discuss the “other”? How does this affect our relationship with the text?
As we can see, imperialism has caused chaos and insanity throughout the book. In our discussion on Wednesday, we briefly talked about Fresleven and how he was “the gentlest, quietest creature that ever walked on two legs” then he went into a rage and was eventually killed (p. 8). Although he is a minor character in the book, what do you think caused him to change so drastically? Was it his exposure to the “savage” people, was it his lack of supervision? What does this reveal about imperialism or otherness?
When first deciding on what I wanted to show in a graph, I thought about points and areas of emphasis I wanted to really hone in on. Things such as who is writing and to what audience as well as when. The word count was also another area that I really though needed to but thought about. In the end I decided to first build a graph on who says the most. This is such a simple graph but one that can really show a lot about the characters in the book. When looking at this graph is is easy to see that Harker, Seward, and Mina talk by far the most. This can be used to infer that they are the three most main characters, but in reality the biggest character is actually Dracula himself, who the book is name after. It was surprising seeing how little Lucy actually would say compared to Mina and even Van Helping. I then decided to take the graph a step further by keeping the word count in, but then changing it by removing the character and replacing them with the genre type. This showed even more emphasis on the importance of each type of genre and how much it offered to say. Again Mina, Harker, and Seward offer the most but then documents such as the Log of the Demeter and cuttings from the Dailygraph have larger word counts than letters between characters. This is important because it shows the author’s commitment to facts and stated archives rather than personal account between characters. The journals offer the most and that makes sense also considering the first graph shows that the word count by chapter matches the word count by genre.
When analyzing the letters it is also interesting to look at which groups of people write to each other the most. I did not find it surprising that it was Mina and Lucy who wrote the most to each other. This makes sense considering their relationship and also shows how well connected the two ladies are. When looking at the letters between the two and Lucy’s own diary, it turns out that there is a larger word count between the two than just Lucy writing to herself. I did also feel surprised to find that the next largest word count in a letter was between Arthur Hollywood and Dr. Seward. A pair that I would not put together.
Upon realizing a strong correlation between the terms used to describe Dracula, specifically in attempting to categorize him, there is a difference in which terms the characters use. This is especially intriguing for analyzing modernity in this piece and how the language and categorization might be used to analyze the “level” of modernity each character is at. It is also intriguing to look at the time each term is brought about. The use of the word vampire first appears only after Van Helsing has been introduced. As we learned in class, the word monster can be broken down to approximately mean “to show”. Whereas the term vampire, upon looking into it, appears to be under debate of its true root. It seems that the term vampire is most popularly believed to come from the word “uber” which is the Turkish word for witch. From there some go further, saying it comes from the Slavic word “upir” which is suggested to be able to be broken down even further to the Slavic word “pij” which means to drink. However all these are still argued about today. Since the graph was not working when I went in, I will try to describe my intention. Each character will be represented with a different color, and the words will be shown in relation to when they were used in comparison to each other. The data I will include to do the is character, date, monster, and vampire. The interest in identifying the “level” of modernity in each character is because it was stated by Jonathan Harker that “mere modernity” could not kill Dracula. However it is interesting to look at in order to see how each person is portrayed. Is Mina, a “new woman” as modern as Van Helsing? where do they stand in relation to each other? Does this reveal anything else about the characters and can we then rank the characters based on something like this? This comparison can also maybe lead us into the mindset of the characters and just how they view Dracula.Although the difference in terminology used by the characters may seem irrelevant and minute, both words have different meanings and implications. The words were specifically used for each character which plays a role in how they are viewed by the reader. One thing I will do to ensure the graph is relevant and accurate is review that it is actually the character whose journal entry it is, is the one who said it. This is to ensure that no other characters are getting quoted and throwing off the data.