Raven Symoné

Raven Symoné

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Lost in Paradise

Milton depicts Lucifer in a very unique way in his work Paradise Lost. In lines 242 to 270, Lucifer exclaims his defiance against God and, furthermore, his lack of interest in changing. Lucifer truly believes he has the power to become greater than God. This shows how much of a high-risk creature Lucifer is. The quote, “Better to reign in Hell than serve in Heaven” shows Lucifer’s unwillingness to better himself, and furthermore shows how strong he is in his opinions, even though they are completely backwards (Milton 263).
Milton shows Lucifer as a quite envious character, wanting to be essentially just like God, ruling his part of the world, Hell, as opposed to God’s heaven. Lucifer goes on explaining how in Hell, “at least we shall be free…” and then explains the positives of God being “out of the picture” in Hell (Milton 258-259). Lucifer is seen as quite obsessive in the given passage, so focused on comparing himself with God and heaven, and doing whatever he can to make sure his Hell is seen as more superior. Although Lucifer is clearly evil, he is also seen as an anti-hero that readers can somehow relate to. Lucifer craves sympathy, and readers, like myself, cannot help but feel for him. In my opinion, God and Lucifer represent a very common archetype of the “older brother,” or in this case father. God is always more successful, and is always seen in a better light, while Lucifer is stuck in his shadow. Readers can relate to this feeling of being “second best,” and therefore classify him as a hero, even if he has evil tendencies.
Milton’s Lucifer has made a huge mark on literature through his creation of a very unpredictable anti-hero. Milton’s Lucifer explored a new, unexplored area in literature that was somewhat revolutionary, as it completely changed the way readers rigidly classified a hero and villain. Milton furthered the idea of the anti-hero, and helped literature evolve into the multilayered creative outlet it is today.
                                                         Works Cited
Milton, John. Paradise Lost. Ed. Scott Elledge. 2nd ed. New York: Norton, 1975.  

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

The Toompoost, nina

Jake Nusynowitz
AP Literature
Ms. Howard
13 January 2015
            Shakespeare’s The Tempest can be interpreted as both a tragedy and romance. When truly interpreting Shakespeare’s final work, though, there are many elements of romance that lead us to lean towards the affectionate genre. Initially, Schwartz writes about “extraordinary occurrences” in his list of characteristics of Shakespearean romance (Schwartz). The Tempest employs quite a few extraordinary occurrences, most specifically the beginning when a shipwreck takes place: “We were all sea-swallow’d, though some cast again” (Shakespeare 2.1). Furthermore, Schwartz speaks about supernatural events, which are extremely relevant in The Tempest. For example, one supernatural being, Prospero, uses his magic to regain his Dukedom and punish his enemies. At the end of the play, Prospero longs to return to society and speaks about his now disinterest with using magic: “…I’ll break my staff, bury it certain fathoms in the earth, and deeper than did ever plummet sound I’ll drown my book” (Shakespeare 5.1). Another example of a supernatural character is Ariel, a magical being who casts spells throughout the play: “Then I beat my tabour; At which, like unback'd colts, they prick'd their ears, Advanced their eyelids…As they smelt music: so I charm'd their ears…” (Shakespeare 4.1.15). Schwartz comments on the supernatural aspects by explaining, “Romance is unrealistic.  Supernatural elements abound, and characters often seem "larger than life" (Schwartz).
            Lastly, The Tempest employs a romantic feel through its sudden “happy ending.” Schwartz explains that “The "happy ending" may seem unmotivated or contrived, not unlike the deus ex machina” (Schwartz). The Tempest’s happy ending comes with setting prisoners free, Prospero giving up his island, as well as his powers that allowed him to control Caliban. The conflict is essentially resolved at the end of the play and all of the characters seemingly live “happily ever after.” Shakespeare commonly employed these characteristics in his works, and The Tempest in no way lacks in being one of his most well-known romances to date.

Works Cited
Schwartz, Debora B. "Shakespeare's Four Final Plays: The Romances. 2005. Web. 14 January 2015.

                   "The Tempest: Entire Play." The Tempest: Entire Play. N.p., n.d. Web. 9 Jan. 2015.