In Anne Fadiman’s book, The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down, two cultures clash with each other in the struggle to save Lia Lee, a Hmong child refugee with severe epilepsy. Although Lee and her family live in the United States, and thus receive medical care from Westerners, her family believes that Lee’s condition is sacred and special. The following miscommunications, both culturally and lingually, between the American doctors and the Lee family leave Lia Lee in comatose at the end of the book. However, Lia Lee could have been saved if the Lee’s had a better understanding of the American doctors’ intentions, and the American doctors understood the Hmong culture. Essentially, the tragedy of Lia Lee can be attributed to the clash of American and Hmong cultures at both the surface and sub-surface level.
In Susan Wolf’s article “The Meaning of Lives” she argues a meaningful life is engaged in positive projects to some degree of success. She also believes that the pursuits with meaning have an objective value that connects with the rest humanity. Susan Wolf’s did not write about her thoughts on the concept of plugging oneself into an experience machine like described by Christopher Grau in “Bad Dreams, Evil Demons, and the Experience Machine”, but her argument for what gives meaning to a life makes it clear that she would argue someone should choose to not plug in. The reason a person would choose to plug into an experience machine is because they could live out all of their fantasies and avoid all the discomfort experienced in real life. But
From the Suffragette movement of the early 20th century to modern day Women’s Marches, it is evident that women have continuously fought against the expectations and limitations placed on them by society. Throughout William Faulkner’s As I Lay Dying, female characters also grapple with gender standards, and either abide by or reject them. Characters such as Dewey Dell and Cora Tull follow female expectations since Dewey Dell allows men to control her and Cora fulfills the expected role of being a caretaker for her husband and children. Addie Bundren meanwhile does not obey societal expectations, which is apparent since she has her own desires and rejects the homemaker role given to women during this time.
Life and Death are one thread, the same line viewed from different sides. Wes Moore and Maria Reyes were right along those different sides. Life and Death was written by the authors John Malcom and Candace Jaye, with each telling the different profiles of Wes Moore and Maria Reyes. Life and Death is a Biography in which, John and Candace, the authors, discuss about Wes Moore and Maria Reyes and their life experiences between life and death. Wes Moore grew up in Baltimore and Maria Reyes grew up in Los Angeles, they both had to make a big turn around for their life.
New Spirits: Americans in the Gilded Age, 1865-1905 written by Rebecca Edwards provides readers with many different individual accounts to illustrate the transformative time of America during the Gilded Age. The work shows the cultural, social, political and economical elements of the age that aided in forming the America we have today. Edwards’s purpose in writing New Spirits is to offer readers new insights on the era by eliminating predetermined stereotypes one may have established before reading the work. Edwards wants readers to put aside their prior knowledge to understand just what it was like to live in the Gilded Age by providing readers with the consequences and achievements of people during the time.
“Talking to the Dead” is a short story by Silvia Watanabe. According to her biography, she wants to save the stories that represent their community. In “Talking to the Dead,” we can find four main characters: Aunty, Clinton, Yuri and Yuri’s mother. Aunty and Clinton have a relationship mother and son quite peculiar. Although Aunty prepares her son since he was a child to continue in the family trade when Clinton becomes an adult, he markets his mother’s occupation and “brings the scientific spirit of free enterprise to the doorstep of the hereafter” as the author narrates it.
The novel Ordinary People by Judith Guest is a story about a family dealing with loss. The story shows the Jarret family dealing with the loss of the eldest son, Buck. The younger son, Conrad, takes it the hardest. Beth and Calvin, the parents, also have to deal with grief as well. I think the loss of Buck is clearly more damaging to Conrad out of the family in his social life, health, and family life.
The realistic fiction story, “Ashes”, by Susan Beth Pfeffer is about a young girl who has two very polar opposite parents. A fun, but irresponsible father, and a practical, proactive mother. Ashes faces a major dilemma when her financially troubled father asks Ashes to steal from her mother’s emergency fund for his own personal needs. Sometimes, the people you love most can be selfish and deceive you. This relates to my story because Ashes’ dad is manipulative, deceptive, and selfish.
“I have learned that the Father relentlessly works to reshape his blood-brought children into the likeness of his son...our task, however, is not merely to endure suffering, but to embrace it, find God on it and draw closer to him through it. Simply put, ‘There is no remedy for this darkness but to sink in it.” A quote from Bruce Demarest, found in his book Seasons of the Soul, discusses the three stages of spiritual development, orientation, disorientation, and reorientation. Disorientation is the stage where trials and sufferings are faced, but most importantly, a stage where we use our pains and sufferings to help us grow. Murray Decker explains disorientation as a stage of “lostness and dryness.”
Additionally, the narrator realizes her consciousness is constantly changing as she “loves the thing untouched by lore…the thing that is not cultivated… the thing built up” (473). The narrator’s consciousness faces another struggle between trying to find equal good in both the culture of her people and the new culture that has been introduced to her. Yet, she stands boldly “one foot in the dark, the other in the light” (473), as she forms a bridge between the two cultures and is stuck while she tries to understand her sense of self. Finally, the silent voice, a metaphor for her faith, calls out to her.
In response to the long-standing philosophical question of immorality, many philosophers have posited the soul criterion, which asserts the soul constitutes personal identity and survives physical death. In The Myth of the Soul, Clarence Darrow rejects the existence of the soul in his case against the notion of immortality and an afterlife. His primary argument against the soul criterion is that no good explanation exists for how a soul enters a body, or when its beginning might occur. (Darrow 43) After first explicating Darrow 's view, I will present what I believe is its greatest shortcoming, an inconsistent use of the term soul, and argue that this weakness impacts the overall strength of his argument.
Not Just a Bowl Beauty is one of the main foci in society today where selfies, beauty enhancement or plastic surgery, celebrities, and the media reign over society—constantly defining what people should aim for in terms of appearance. Appearances are everything to many people rather than inner beauty such as character and values. In turn, this beauty-obsessed world has led to people becoming more shallow, superficial, and unaccepting towards anything besides the “norm.” It is quite ironic to have a “norm” considering how each individual is different and live in different cultures and such. People are not meant to be or look the same neither should they adhere to a certain standard in which someone else has established.
Your Silver Spoon Will Be the Death of You Meghan Daum’s Variation of Grief exemplifies how different people take advantage of their different lifestyles. Daum’s view of her friend, Brian Peterson, suggests that his privilege and lack of importance for time hindered him from maturing. His family was not large, according to Daum,”The Peterson family unit was a tiny thing—mom, dad, kid. There were no other siblings, only a handful of relatives.” Brian’s parents gave him everything he wanted.
Racism was always a big issue and still occurs today. The story “Passing” took place in the 1920’s during the Harlem Renaissance and it spoke about the term “Passing” which indicates that African American’s who looked lighted skin can go to public places without being discriminated. In “Passing” Nella Larsen demonstrates how racism causes jealousy, resentment, and dishonesty in relationships. The idea is conveyed through inner conflict, the conflict between the main characters and how the Harlem Renaissance period inflicts tension in relationships.
“Patrick! She called. How are you darling. She put the parcel down and went into the living room and when she saw him lying on the ground.” Mary also creates an act that makes the detectives believe that she did not do anything to do with the murder.