Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Prompts for Blake & Bechdel (with a splash of Silko)

Prompt 1

Note: This is, indeed, the same as last week - but this time you need to do it with the Songs of Experience, not the Songs of Innocence.
Pick no more than three of Blake’s poems. If you work with multiple poems, I’d like to understand why you are using them together. Your job is to analyze the use of either…

a) color, or

b) a particular image (a repeating image of you are doing multiple poems) which doesn’t seem to be directly mentioned in the poem itself

… and how that color, or that image, impacts the meaning of the text.

In other words, by paying attention to that color or that part of the engraving which doesn’t seem to be referenced in the text itself, how should we read the text differently?

Prompt 2

Using details of both Bechdel’s written text and her art, make an argument which is explicitly concerned with one of the houses in the book.

Example 1: “Bechdel’s father seems to use the structure of the two houses to try to keep himself and his world under control. The fact that he is unable to control himself helps us understand that ….”

Example 2: “Both the fun home and the Bechdel family home are rooted in the past [a claim that would needed to be detailed, of course]. Bechdel, like her father, is unable to escape the past, which means…”

Prompt 3

Using multiple examples from your chosen text, including both words and images, try to define how Silko or Blake understand the concepts of “Time,” “History,” or “Change” differently than we usually do. The details of the argument are up to you; the assumption is that these concepts are distinctive and even strange in Silko and Blake. If you don’t agree with this assumption (which is fine!), this probably isn’t the prompt for you.

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