What has Changed?

The First Remove

 

Screams of all sorts I hear around me. My people and I continue to capture all of these people trying to enter in our land without any authorization. Who do they think they are, do they think we are weak or stupid? I hear the terrible cries from these children, trying to seek refugee in my homeland. I look at one of the captives, and they stare up at me with their tear stained cheek as if I am some “barbaric creature”. I hold weapons to show my dominance over them, and they quickly huddle in the corner continuing their loud cries. We are doing what is best for our people, our country. These people only bring problems along with them. I’m doing good.

 

Second Remove

The next day, I am sent to the southern border once again. To accomplish the same duties that is what protects my country, my main mission. From afar I see the families trying to find their way through our land. I must stop them, that is my duty. Once we detain the intruders, we immediately separate the mother from the only child that she beared with her throughout her journey. The mother fights back, but she is easily controllable, the child too. Aside from the screams and lack of fighting, we repeat the same action with other families coming in. There I take the child back to the other children who we have held captive for the greater good of our country. Their the child joins the screams of the other intruders, while I walk away and feel accomplished for the duties that I have completed.

 

Third Remove

The next morning, I walk beside the heavily wired cages, with no forms of escape. I see a few children awake. One in particular catches my attention. The young girl maybe around age 3 or 4 wearing a pink stays sniffling in the corner looking down at her wrist. I take a step closer and see that it is a golden bracelet with a cross, along with jesus attached to it. She becomes aware of my presence, and looks up to me, then back at her bracelet. This girl, I remember her from yesterday, she is the one that I seprarted from the mother. The girl looks up at me again, and I make my position clear, glaring at her showing no mercy. She is not one of us, she is different, she is not civil like my people, she is savage.

 

Fourth Remove

After going by that little girl, out of pure curiosity I decide to pay the mother a visit. After gathering information, I was able to find her whereabouts, which is by a nearby facility. Once another guard guides me to her, I noticed that she held a bible in her hand. As I stepped closer to her I heard quiet prayers from her. On her wrist was the same bracelet her daughter was wearing. Religion seems to play a vital purpose in their life. We both believe in the higher power, however we are not the same, we will never be the same. I am doing good, keeping people like her and her family from invading our country along with the bad that is brought along with them. It is my civic duty. I tuck my golden cross chain back in my uniform, and walk away.

 

Fifth Remove

After repeating my job again, I go back home to relax. I sit down on my favorite recliner, and turn on the television to keep up with the local news. When I turn on the screen there is a picture that was released by the press, that revealed the little girl that I had separated from her mother. I instantly recognized her by the clothing and the bracelet. Her picture was making headlines due to the raw emotion that she was showing, causing some of the audience to feel sympathy for her. What am I doing, am I really responsible for the terror that is showing in her eyes. I can’t feel bad though. She is not one of us, she is an illegal immigrant. Her and her people only bring crime into our homeland. She and her people are the epitome of savage.

 

Review

I decided to recreate a parody of Mary Rowlandson Narrative of the Captivity Restoration of Mrs. Mary Rowlandson. I used the same format that Rowlandson used to write her experiences. What I decided to do was recreate her story with our present situation regarding the United States immigration system. What I did was give the perspective of Rowlandson to the guard that is telling their story in the version that I created. In Rowlandson Narrative she is given the weaker position since she was the one help kept captive, but in the narrative I created I reversed the roles. It is as if I gave Rowlandson the dominant role in this narrative and the Indians the weaker role, which would be the equivalence of Rowlandson’s role in her own writing. I find these two situations very similar. In Rowlandson’s narrative although, she was the one being held captive she saw the Indians as lower than her, she never viewed them as human, because they were different from her people. This is the same situation that I put the guard in my narrative. One thing that I also think played a very crucial part in Rowlandson’s narrative was religion. Religion is what I used in my narrative to sort of create a bond between the immigrant child and the guard. Although the guard notices the similarities, he still lacks the idea of treating them with respect, or as humans. Throughout Rowlandson’s narrative we constantly see her referencing god, to keep her along the journey, which is similar to what I had the immigrant mother and daughter do. No matter what happened, the guard stuck to his american ideals that what he was doing was what was best for his people and country. Both Rowlandson and the guard are justifying their own or their people’s actions, being completely oblivious to the damage they are causing other people. Although Rowlandson becomes fascinated with aspects of their lifestyle, at the end of her captivity she still sees as the “barbaric creatures” that she did in the beginning.I tried to create a parallel between the two stories. Both had gone and experienced different cultures or lifestyles. However both fail to see that these people are the same as them. They are both heavily influenced by the social construction of race. This reveals that history is continuing to repeat itself, and that racism is still very much present in our society.

-Dariana Lara

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Coming to an End

The harp itself is a symbol for an ancient, pure, prestigious Ireland. Prior to the oppression that the Irish community faced , the harp symbolized high class honor. In the poem The Harp that Once Through Tara’s Halls by Thomas Moore, is about Irish Nationalism. Moore lets Tara symbolize the seat of Irish government, and the rule of Ireland. The harp, the traditional musical instrument known, as the Irish symbol, symbolizes the Irish people, culture, and spirit. This poem to put it bluntly is also about how things that are famous and important at one point, will eventually lose value or worth. It is the idea that no matter what oblivion or death is inevitable. The poem demonstrates how the harp loses, its high class value. The beginning of this ballad talks about the joy that this instrument brought to the lives of people. “ So glory’s thrill is o’er, And hearts, that once beat high for praise,” This is discussing the joy that the harp had brought to the people. After the devastations of the Irish community, the harps symbol of high status, had the reminder of suffering attached to it. “The harp that once through Tara’s halls The soul of music shed, Now hangs as mute on Tara’s walls, As if that soul were fled” What lines 1 through 4 mean from this poem is that ever since harp was no longer played as much as it used to, the spirit of the Irish community ceased with it. It is sad, knowing that something that these people seeked joy and happiness through had gained a negative symbol with it. The second part of the poem talks about the pain that people got from playing the harp, ever since the Irish were viewed as “barbaric’ people.

-Dariana Lara

 

Monterey 2019

I wander thro’ the busy street of Cannery Row,

Near where the Pacific Ocean does flow.

And mark in every face I meet

Marks of happiness, marks of life.

 

In every step of every Man,

In every Infants curious voice,

In every voice; in every blink

The mind escaped far far away from reality.

 

How the Aquarium revealed the marine life

Every other wall made of see through glass

And the audience full attention taken

Runs through the pure amazement of the captivated sea life.

 

But most through Cannery Row I hear

The shops running and people commenting

Blasts high expectations for the next set of tourists

Who spreads the joys of world’s natural beauty.

-Dariana Lara

 

The Light Beneath the Dark

The second image by Casper Friedrich titled the The Abbey in the Oakwood relatively connects with the poem We are Seven by Wordsworth. This poem is generally about the speaker of the poem asking a little girl what she knows about life and death. She then begins to tell him the story of her family, which she frequently repeats that “we are seven” meaning that there are seven sibling in total. The confusion stems from the girl revealing that two of her siblings are dead, causing the speaker to claim that there are only five of them in reality. The image of Friedrich reveals an abandoned graveyard. Dead trees run in between the tombstones, and the color of the image is very dull and grainy giving it that creepy and rustic vibe. Immediately when I saw this image, i thought about this poem because, one of the poems major theme is death. “Two of us in the chur ch-yard lie,

My sister and my brother,

And in the church-yard cottage, I

Dwell near them with my mother”

This quote is said by the little girl in the poem. The girl in this poem seems to be in denial with the death of her two siblings. She refuses to let the grief of to dominate her well being, and accepts the deaths of her members and that things change suddenly. The mood of this poem definitely fits with the picture, in terms of it being almost spooky. We have this little girl telling this man her life story, at a church yard cottage, which I picture to look Friedrichs image. Amongst all the darkness, death, etc., the little girl represents the slight light in the background. Throughout the poem there doesn’t seem to be an ounce of emotion or sadness in the tone of the little girl representing her optimism despite her family’s circumstance. This is what causes the speaker to drop his argument of saying there are only five of them, letting the poem end with the little girl have the last words being “Nay we are seven!”.

-Dariana Lara

 

Poetry meets Iron Maiden

When I first started listening to Iron Maiden’s song of “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner” I didn’t think that the beat or rhythm matched the beat of the poem by Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s poem. As I listened deeper into the song I realized that the beat of the music does go in fact with the poem, and it actually contributed to helping me understand the poem more clearly. When I first read the poem I read it with sort of a dark gloomy mood, since the story itself is pretty haunting. The song however begins with more of an upbeat rock rhythm, sort of creating a form suspense to help direct the story that is being told within the poem. The poem is about a mariner who tells the story of his ship voyage to a random wedding guest, in hopes of spreading his story to get people to appreciate nature. The story is basically about the mariner who kills a special bird “ the albatross”, with not much valid reason and is forced to pay the crime of his actions. In the song the beat remains the same up until to the point where the mariner is confronted by another ship that puts a curse on him, basically killing all of the men on the ship besides him. The beat of the music begins to slow down when the men of the ship are brought back to life, and basically begin haunting the mariner for his disgrace amongst nature. The pictures within the video at that moment present a sinking ship, zombies, etc,. As soon as the mariner begins to find appreciation of nature (with the sea creatures) the music begins to move at a faster pace creating more of an uplifting mood. By the end of the song the beat returns to the same that it was in the beginning, which matches with the ending of the story because his story seems to have impacted the wedding guest because he is no longer concerned about the wedding. He is described as becoming “sadder and wiser” by the end of the poem. I do think that the song is like romantic poetry because the beat of the music matches with the pace of the poem, and the images shown in the video relate to the events going on in the story (sinking ship, zombies, the colors, etc,.).

-Dariana Lara

 

Equal

“Oh Jove! O father! If it thy will

That we must perish, we thy will obey,

But let us perish by the light of day.” (78).

 

This quote was adapted from Alexander Pope’s translation of Homer’s Iliad. In 1759 Equiano sailed for Gibraltar. This quote was used when Equiano was given the warning that the french fleet was coming their way. This quote reveals the religious side of Equiano. Prior to his sail, Equiano had been attending school in London where the sisters were teaching him to read and instructing him in religion. Coming from the slave trade you wouldn’t expect someone like Equiano to be familiar with the certain teachings or beliefs. To prove that he was superior to others Equiano includes religious quotes into his writing. For one it reveals to his audience that he was more than just a slave, it shows that he was a believer of god, just like most of them. The inclusion of quotes also allows Equiano to gain sympathy from the readers. He is revealing to the readers, as said by the quote that if this is their time to depart from this world then they must obey because that is their destiny from god. In The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano , Equiano references many english authors such as Milton, Thomas Day, Denha, etc., as well as translated quotes from the bible to make it known to the reader that he is an educated man of color. Aside from all of the oppression and other people have saved, he is capable of doing the same things as the people who feel they are superior to him do. He wanted to prove within his works that he is an educated man who was capable of certain beliefs. He wanted to prove that these characteristics aren’t only found in certain people, he proved that it is attainable

-Dariana Lara.

 

Greatest English Poet

The image that I think best represented the biggest obstacle Alex Pope faced was image two.. Alex Pope is known as one of the greatest poets ever, “Although it is no longer fashionable to call the first half of the eighteenth century the “Age of Pope,” many of his contemporaries saw him as the predominant literary genius of his time. Today, most literary historians agree that the greatest English Poet between John Milton and William Wordsworth was Alexander Pope.” Alexander Pope although described as wise with his poetic work some, was also constantly undermined by others based on his appearance. “When he was twelve, he contracted tuberculosis of the spine (Pott’s disease) a condition that stunted his growth and left him humpbacked and deformed. At four feet six inches…” Because of this disease many people made fun of him, and in this case image number two represents just some of the bullying he experienced. Image 2 has the face of Pope pasted on the body of a rat,  which is what they compared him often. It has him resting on a stack of notes that resembles almost all of the work that he criticizes, One of the biggest offenses, aside from Alex physical appearance, was adding the crown, which according to the lecture notes is a mockery towards his religion of catholicism. Pope confronts his haters through his writing, criticizing those who mocked and made fun of him. “Pope particularly went after those writers, critics, and reader whom he thought were dull, tasteless, stupid, or corrupt; and mostly those who negatively reviewed his work. I think that Alex using his greatest talent as a form to defend himself was one of his greatest strengths.

-Dariana Lara

 

Out of the “Norm”

After reading part I of Gulliver’s Travels by Jonathan Swift, I realized that Swifts and Rowlandson’s work “The Captivity Narrative” have a lot in common. The first thing that I noticed similar from both works is that they are both being told from the perspective of the first person, and are both journals based on their travels, or rather much captivities.  Both works, demonstrate the weakness that people face when confronted by different groups. In chapter 1 of “Gulliver’s Travel” Swift describes the capture of Gulliver by foreigners, “ I attempted to rise, but was not able to stir: for, as I happened to lie on my back, I found my arms and legs were strongly fastened on each side to the ground; and my hair, which was long and thick, tied down in the same manner.  I likewise felt several slender ligatures across my body, from my arm-pits to my thighs.” Throughout his time with the people who are foreigners to him and vice versa, they hold him hostage, torture him to a certain extent, but then again also care for him. One of the instances that stands out to me the most, is the way the “creatures react to all of Gulliver’s movements. They are surprised by the quantity that he eats and drinks, and not knowing him at all, and having no knowledge as if to whether he can potentially hurt their people they still make sure that he is given the standard necessities. In the case of Rowlandson, her experience is similar. With Gulliver he categorizes the foreigners as “creatures”, and in the case of Rowlandson she also calls the Native American “barbarous creatures”. This demonstrates sort of a satirical bond between both works, in terms of how creature is being used for two different groups but hold the same offensive meaning. Aside from that, Rowlandson shares a similar experience with the Native Americans in the sense that she is also held captive, but is taken care of at the same time. Both Rowlandson and Gulliver learn a bit of the culture of both groups that they are completely foreign to. Both works demonstrate the struggles that people go through when confronted with someone or something out of the “norm”.

-Dariana Lara

 

Realization

To Mrs.Rowlandson

 

Dear Mrs.Rowlandson

I write to you not with sympathy or rather no emotion at all. This letter is written in hopes to open your eyes, and make you realize that your yours and your people’s actions and intentions are not pure and is proven to be against the wishes of our god. The time that you were spent being a captive of the Indians you presented them as  bad people, continuously demonizing them describing them as utterly savage and barbaric people. Your writing was stemmed from pure hate, trying to claim yourself as the victim within the event that the Indians took you. However you and your people completely dehumanized their people. There is no excuse for what they did to your family, but all of the emotion from their end stemmed from pure revenge. As you were held captive you got to experience living in their lifestyle, had the chance to become a bit familiar with their culture. What shocks me the most, is that even when the Indians almost welcomed you as one of their own, you always went back to the hate that started it all.Momentarily distracted from the hostility, it was all lost as you retracted backed to your thought of marginalization. You who claim to be such a big believer of god need to familiarize yourself with his words. “ ‘Let us not love in word but in deed let your love be without dissimulation. See that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently. If any man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar.’” You and your people have demonstrated nothing but hate, you who claims to please god, and love him are going against his word. God believes in loving everyone, you who cannot demonstrate the same act are not worthy of his love.

 

-Apes

-Dariana Lara

The Victim?

In Mary Rowlandson “Narrative of the Captivity and Restoration of Mrs. Mary Rowlandson”

Is some sort of a memoir focused on events that she has witnessed and experiences that have happened to her.  One of the major events that sticks out within this narrative is the presentation of the indigenous people. It’s nothing new knowing that these minority groups have been a main target to oppression. They were constantly rejected by the Puritan society, which is where their revenge stemmed from. Within this narrative we see that Rowlandson paints these people as almost monsters “barbarous creatures” (Rowlandson 1). But really what this narrative demonstrated about her character is that she still feels superior to them. I feel that everything that she experienced when taken by the Indians, in the case of her children brings out some sort of emotion from the reader because that is something that one normally could fathom happening to them. Maybe the goal was to feel pity for her, but one could never erase history. I think that a major part of this reading was dedicated to her beliefs in her religion. She almost used it as an escape, to reassure to her that she is a victim. “Oh, I may see the wonderful power of God, that my Spirit did not utterly sink under my affliction: still the Lord upheld me with His gracious and merciful spirit, and we were both alive to see the light of the next morning.” (Rowlandson 2). God is her main motivator, against all the bad things that her people have done she still believes that their god is following and protecting them, because they initially believe what they were doing was what was best and expected. She and the other Puritans believed that god arranges things for a purpose. We see that the longer Rowlandson stays with the Indians she begins almost adapting to their customs, however she still fears that she is leaving behind her civilized manner, and is becoming what they describe the Indians as “savage”. This narrative just further proves the discrimination that Indigenous groups have faced, and how they are at time misrepresented.

-Dariana Lara