November 30, 2011

The Hannas’ house was a hundred-year-old Tudor. . . . Inside, everything was tasteful and half falling apart. The Oriental carpets had stains. The brick-red kitchen linoleum was thirty years old. When Mitchell used the powder room, he saw that the toilet paper dispenser had been repaired with Scotch tape. So had the peeling wallpaper in the hallway. (74)


When people think of maniacs, they tend to think of disheveled individuals who can’t help but appear to be falling to pieces.  Here, the house is a literal representation of that.  The only thing holding together the house is Scotch tape.  A clear, thin, piece of plastic with somewhat effective adhesive is all that holds a toilet paper dispenser and wallpaper together.  Things such as clothing, or fronts that the characters put up are their version of scotch tape: it does an okay job of holding it together for a while, but eventually it will wear off as the mania continues to set in and eat away at the adhesive.  There is no way that they can last, and will crumble like the house, dispenser and wallpaper that hides the ugly sheetrock or concrete underneath.

Research. . .

November 23, 2011

Can “The Cask of Amontillado” be looked at as a sort of dream, sitting there to be analyzed not just by Poe, but his audience as well? Much of my research has shown that Poe has always been viewed as having a sort of perverse quality to his writing. In focusing on this aspect, is it correct to assume that Poe is truly some sort of deviant? Or perhaps, could Poe simply be taking images from his mind and focusing on them to the point where he develops a coherent tale that has a carefully laid out plot? Focusing on Freud’s work on dreams would be a great lens to use for this topic. Pieces written about Poe, and those that were crafted by Poe himself, seem to indicate that he is most definitely not a madman like the narrator of “The Cask of Amontillado.” In addition to simply reading criticism about the piece, I should also look up articles about Freud’s interpretation of dreams, as well as those that comment on Poe’s work methods.

Structure and Growth

November 12, 2011

Myth absolutely needs repetition in order to establish a structure.  It is often by repeating earlier mistakes that new insight is gained and a lesson is offered to the reader.  By asking the miller’s daughter to give up her first-born child, Rumplestiltskin is putting her in a position similar to the one her father was in when he offered her to the King.  At first, her response is to agree in order to save her own life.  This is not exactly the same as her father attempting to look important to the King, but does call back to it.  It is no surprise that she is put into this situation.  Now standing in her father’s shoes, she must decided whether she will do the same thing, or rise above.  At first she does make the wrong choice, sacrificing her potential child as she swears to Rumplestiltskin.  However, she does redeem herself by going to great lengths to save the child from it’s fate.  By using repetition, the reader gets a sense of growth and development, even if it occurs over two generations.  By seein gone individual react to a dilemma in a new way, the audience is presented with the core ideal of the myth because the differences are enhanced by the similarities.


November 12, 2011


By being faced with a daunting task, the characters often make choices or decisions that show a lack of thought.  Columns A and B reflect that.  After realizing that their deals are not as favorable as they thought they would be, they make further questionable decisions such as sending a servant to find a name (i.e. cheating) or making a deal with Rumplestiltskin in the first place in order to fool the King.



November 2, 2011

The rhetorical element of metaphor and simile is similar to Freud’s theory of condensation because by forcing two ideas together into a single sentence forces knowledge and thoughts the two have in common, much information is packed down into a smaller package. The point the author is trying to get across with those notions is boiled down and made into a reduction sauce that enhances the notion. By doing this, seemingly complex ideas can be concentrated so they are far more potent.