Wednesday, February 23, 2011


Both the burning monk and the fruit vendor felt that their voices were unheard, one upset about matters regarding his religion, and the latter snapped all because of a confiscated scale. Both of these incidents occur because of many little things piling on top of eachother. The scale being stolen by the vendor was just the tip of the iceberg, the one little thing that sent the men overboard.

I think that both of these burnings were a little dramatic, but it got the point across. Listen. The 'president for life' of Tunisia fled after protesters had gathered around his door, in defense of the fruit vendor. It is said that the vendor may have forever changed the Arab world because of his actions.

"I was to see that sight again, but once was enough. Flames were coming from a human being; his body was slowly withering and shriveling up, his head blackening and charring. In the air was the smell of burning human flesh; human beings burn surprisingly quickly. Behind me I could hear the sobbing of the Vietnamese who were now gathering. I was too shocked to cry, too confused to take notes or ask questions, too bewildered to even think... As he burned he never moved a muscle, never uttered a sound, his outward composure in sharp contrast to the wailing people around him."

David Halberstam, New York Times

Friday, February 18, 2011

OPTION 1/Litteral Analysis of WW1

 Edwin Evan Jones had experienced the officer life firsthand, and now his story is unraveled through his diary entries.A link can be found here.

December 21st 1915

Good-bye France, you have given me some sleepless nights, and many a hard day's work. I very much regret leaving you for foreign parts, but some day I shall return to you and go over all the ground again; no doubt it will recall many sad recollections.
Boarded the S.S.. "Vita" at Marseilles at 11 a.m., after rushing about and looking after the equipment.
A mail has arrived, but, alas! it is not being served out, but put upon the mail boat "Persia". It was very hard to think that we could not read our letters for the last time on France, and Legge received a parcel from home, and how all our mouths watered to think of eating a cake in "Blighty".

December 22nd 1915

First day's sail and no signs of sea-sickness. Everybody happy with the glorious sunshine, and the sea so calm.
Started on iron rations again which was not welcomed, but still, you must remember it's "War-time". Night arrived and all in darkness and no one allowed on deck. Lifeboats had to be worn, and sleep where you can. Garter and I found a very snug corner, but, oh, how hard the floor was! In spite of it all slept A.1.

     An entire version of the diary can be read here.
From the first excerpt, "Good-bye France, you have given me some sleepless nights, and many a hard day's work. I very much regret leaving you for foreign parts, but some day I shall return to you and go over all the ground again; no doubt it will recall many sad recollections." He isn't exited to go, but is confident of return and victory, showing his true potential as a soldier.
     From December 25, 1915,
"I have had some very rough meals on active service, but getting bully beef and biscuits on Christmas Day beats all. We all wished to be back in France; the food we were getting was terrible. " Even on Christmas, soldiers are still in "war time".
     March 7th, 1916,
"Oh, my God! What's happened ? The noise of guns and rifles is terrible!" This shows, like Steven Crane, how war can be greatly overrated. Although smudged by the rush of adrenaline, war is a horrible sight, even worse when caught in it.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

The White Man's Burden & Imperialism.

The White Man's BurdenRudyard Kipling
Imperialism was often glorified both by those actively involved in it and by the public at home. Part of this glorification involved perceiving imperialism as a Christian and nationalistic venture. More broadly it involved portraying imperialism as a heroic deed carried out by idealistic leaders of Western civilization in an effort to spread the "benefits" of "true civilization" to 'less advanced" peoples of the world. One of the most popular expressions of this is found in the writings of Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936), particularly in his poem "The White Man's Burden," written in 1899 to celebrate the American annexation of the Philippines.

Take up the White Man's burden-
Send forth the best ye breed-
Go, bind your sons to exile
To serve your captives' need;
To wait, in heavy harness,
On fluttered folk and wild-
Your new-caught sullen peoples,
Half devil and half child.
Take up the White Man's burden-
In patience to abide,
To veil the threat of terror
And check the show of pride;
By open speech and simple,
An hundred times made plain,
To seek another's profit
And work another's gain.
Take up the White Man's burden-
The savage wars of peace-
Fill full the mouth of Famine,
And bid the sickness cease;
And when your goal is nearest
(The end for others sought)
Watch sloth and heathen folly
Bring all your hope to nought.
Take up the White Man's burden-
No iron rule of kings,
But toil of serf and sweeper-
The tale of common things.
The ports ye shall not enter,
The roads ye shall not tread,
Go, make them with your living
And mark them with your dead.
Take up the White Man's burden,
And reap his old reward-
The blame of those ye better
The hate of those ye guard-
The cry of hosts ye humour
(Ah, slowly!) toward the light:-
"Why brought ye us from bondage,
Our loved Egyptian night?"
Take up the White Man's burden-
Ye dare not stoop to less-
Nor call too loud on Freedom
To cloke your weariness.
By all ye will or whisper,
By all ye leave or do,
The silent sullen peoples
Shall weigh your God and you.
Take up the White Man's burden!
Have done with childish days-
The lightly-proffered laurel,
The easy ungrudged praise:
Comes now, to search your manhood
Through all the thankless years,
Cold, edged with dear-bought wisdom,
The judgment of your peers.

1.Determine what Kippling means by "the White Man's burden".
     "The White Man's burden" means imperialism.
2.Does Kippling justiy imperialism? How so?
     He veiws it as something all human's will naturaly do. Take from others.
3.Why might such a justification be so appealing?
     He draws out points that people know are true,"To seek another's profit, to work another's gain" is exactly what people want to do. They don't want ot work, they want other's to work for them.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Self-Reflection Questions Reconstruction Debate

How did I feel during planning this presentation? Why did I feel this way?
          Planning the presentation, I felt confident. I had my part down, I mostly enjoyed writing it.

How did I feel prior to presenting? Why did I feel this way?
          I felt nervous, as of learning the 8th graders could ask questions. Anxious, even.
How did I feel while I was presenting? Why did I feel this way?
          I felt awful. The slides weren’t working, and it seemed to suffocate our groups presentation. I cracked, and Miss Bailin saw. “You can go on without the tech piece.” I might have regained some confidence from that point on, but not much.
What did I personally do well?
           After giving up on the slides, I think I did okay. Evertything before by me was pitiful, in my opinion.
What did not go as desired in this presentation?
          The tech slides would repeat, instead of moving onto the next slide.
On a scale from 1-10, how well do I think I understood the content? Explain.
           7, it could have been better, but I didn’t spend much time studying the flaws I was to point out, and I didn’t have the sections of the constitution memorized, so when it came time to ask questions, I could only answer limitedly.
How do I think my group members perceived me? Why do I think this?
           I think they perceived me poorly. Behind my mask of semi-confidence that I tried to keep up, I think they could see how many gaps I really had.
How do I think the 8th graders perceived me? Why do I think this?
           I think they perceived me averagely. I tried to grab their attention, stepping forward towards them. This could have possibly showed them I was commited, and even though I wasn’t the best public speaker, I certainly wasn’t the worst.
Knowing that I can only control how I act and react, if I could do this presentation again, what would I change about my actions to make it a more ideal experience?
          I would work more on slides, and since I wasn’t a fan of them anyways, maybe I would make it simpler, but yet something to still draw attention towards me. I would also like to collaborate with my group members more.
What are my strengths in groups?
          I think my strengths in groups are listening to others ideas, and hearing them out. Maybe even public speaking. I like to get things out of the way, and am normally not too nervous to stand in front of classmates…
What areas do I need improvement?
          I need to get better with content. I tend to slack, and then it’s just not fun trying to catch up. I should also try to put some more effor t into any tech production I do, and not procrastinate.
What is the most important thing I learned about myself? Why is this so important?
          I learned that I really need to stop procrastinating. It affects the group, it affects me, and causes WAY too much stress.
Are there any other things that I need to express?