Note to the Reader

December 7th, 2011

Dear Reader,

This website represents a collection of course work that I have completed for English 170W. This website is an analysis of the short story, The Little Frenchman and His Water Lots by George Pope Morris. In order to create this website I underwent a series of close readings and theoretical techniques to interpret the reading. A significant help was the historical background of American society during the time that the story was published.

My weakness this semester, was completing assignments promptly and especially learning how to search for and use scholarly journals to the best of my ability. My strength is making connections from the text to a real world setting. What I am most proud of is analyzing the literary meaning of a text. I learned how to create a website and I’m so technologically challenged. I also learned how to create a twitter account. Most importantly I learned how to analyze texts critically, especially a Shakespearian text. Enjoy my interpretation of The Frenchman and His Little Water Lots.


Femi Jones

Levi-Strauss Approach on Myths

November 9th, 2011

Methodology of a Semiotician

October 26th, 2011

Step 1: Read the poem in entirety to understand its deeper meaning. The linear nature of the signifier requires  the reader to read complete statements to understand the concept.

Step 2:Identify the signifier and signified of words in the poem. Analyze each word in the poem for its connotation, and all other mental thoughts that occur when analyzing that word.

Step 3: Analyze the word choice of the reading because in linguistics, words are defined through their differences  and comparison to other words rather than a independent and positive value.

Semiotician interpretation of Sonnet 65:

Since brass, nor stone, nor earth, nor boundless sea,
But sad mortality o’er-sways their power,
How with this rage shall beauty hold a plea,
Whose action is no stronger than a flower?
O, how shall summer’s honey breath hold out
Against the wreckful siege of battering days,
When rocks impregnable are not so stout,
Nor gates of steel so strong, but Time decays?
O fearful meditation! where, alack,
Shall Time’s best jewel from Time’s chest lie hid?
Or what strong hand can hold his swift foot back?
Or who his spoil of beauty can forbid?
   O, none, unless this miracle have might,
   That in black ink my love may still shine bright.

Learn to do a Hover Annotation

October 24th, 2011

When rocks impregnable are not so stout,

The new critics approach on the given interpretation of sonnet 65 goes as follows:

The interpretation acknowledges the paradoxical idea  present in the poem that something as weak as beauty may survive earth’s elements and survive through time especially when Father time’s primary duty is to age and deminish all things. New critics would appreciate this because they define good poems as those that acknowledge and embrace conflicts and tensions in words and create a deeper, unified and singular meaning. New critics characterize this effort to be an organic unity; a natural union of words and concepts that seem to oppose each another and that together reveal a singular message.  

However this interpretation goes awry when it takes into account the history of the poet bycomparing two separate works  of the same poet to find the hidden meaning in the sonnet. New critics are blatantly against taking into account the ideas from sources other than the text at hand. The meaning of a work is to be interpreted by the actual text and content of that work, not corroborated with another to determine its message.

Digital Humanities on Richter’s Map

October 13th, 2011

Digital Humanities Map

Richter’s has identified literary theory into four major techniques which he defines as mimetic, rhetorical, expressive, or formal. Being that digital humanities is the intersection of digital technology and the humanities, I find it interesting where it will be classified under the aforementioned categories. The rhetorical approach emphasizes the relationship between the work of art and the audience. Digital humanities  can possibly be the overview for each of the literary theories. Digital humanities can be mimetic by using technology such as a web chat or talk show on television to connect the author to the audiences. The show that I love the most is Visionaries-Inside the Creative Mind, on the OWN channel. When it comes one I get inspired by of today’s great moguls like Jim Carey or Tyler Perry. It fascinates me how some can go from being a Joe-Schmo or even homeless to becoming a tycoon in their field.Digital Humanities can be expressive by exploring the connection between the art and the artist through video journal like the show project runway. The one on one time with each contestant and capture that individuality, soul, and essence of the designer. The artist’s vision is even more original given the circumstances that each contest is given the same challenge but the beauty of each piece comes from within the designer. Digital humanities can become rhetorical by strengthening the relationship between the art and audience such as mediums like youtube. After watching a video or hearing a literary piece, the audience can leave comments about what they saw, vote on what they saw and discuss with others what the piece was about or how it made them feel. Digital humanities can be formal which is similar the a new critics point-of-view by using tools like Ngram viewer and wordle. These tools analyze art by evaluating only the elements in a piece like a word count, or alphabetizing the vocabulary.

One show that uses digital humanities in all four of these aspects is Oprah’s Lifeclass Live on OWN.  This show connects the audience from all around the country and the world to one another through the nationally syndicated program and an additional live web chat during the taping of the program. Oprah and her co-host Iyanla Vanzant(relationship expert) reflect on past shows and share experiences that have changed since the show. Oprah does interviews with the past guests to see how that felt about their work then, now, and in the future. The past interview are analyzed by Iyanla all while audience member and those how are texting, calling, emailing Oprah comments and question. All of these connections happen simultaneously and in front of a live studio audience. This show used many different form of technology to create a larger and united connection from the audience to the art to the author and a closed interpretation of the art all at the same time. It sounds confusing but amazingly it works well. Digital humanities brings what we have fantasized in our minds to life digitally which is like virtually. Some many new children’s toys are being reinvented to do digitally like painting or coloring on a computer screen.



Web Wednesday 10/5

October 5th, 2011

During today’s class, we created a wordle  or tag cloud of the words that composed our chosen short story. In the perspective of digital humanities, wordle is not a useful tool because it didn’t provided any more incite to the story.Instead it was just a collection of randomly chosen words, whose prominence didn’t reflect its importance to the story. It seems as if wordle is digital way to pick words from inside a hat. In today’s class we also used the Ngram viewer. This was an interesting  tool because it showed us the popularity of words in literature throughout different time intervals. This was a helpful tool for digital humanities because the quantitative data could be analyzed qualitatively by providing an opportunity for speculation on what society was like by analyzing that words that were used during a specific time. In this instance technology and the study of the human condition intersect which in this topic is a new idea entirely.

Additional Analysis 12/6/11

After completing the annotated bibliography I realized that the Ngram viewer helped me tremendously when trying to find literature that applied to my short story. The Ngram viewer helped me to find subject term to look for in the journal search and I began to make connections and draw conclusions about the tone of the United States during the year that my short story was published. which gave me incite on the purpose that the writer may have had that motivated him to create his literary piece.

Possible Short Story Selection

October 3rd, 2011

I was thinking about  reading a short story about humor because an enjoyable comedy is a memorable comedy. It can be hard to forget a really funny joke. Also humor can have many layers especially in literature where an author can be limiteless in word play and ambiguities. A story that eloquently harnesses this aspect becomes extremely well known and a classic for other authors to create their own renditions. It reminds my of a play that I read in high school called the, Importance of Being Ernest, in which everything was not what it seemed. Although it was confusing at times, its layers of indirect conversation made it difficult to know the story but amusing to try to find the plot.

The story that I may choose is The Little Frenchman and His Water Lots. I may choose this story because it is an American story about a Frenchman. T o my knowledge French can be a very difficult language to learn and sometimes when people find a challenge to understand something, they tend to discredit the value in the information and make fun of it . I’m under the impression by the title of the story that the American perspective of the French is negative and disrepectful. I may be wrong but I am curious to find what arrogance America may be serving up this time.

The author is George Pope Morris.I was unfamiliar to his other works of literature previous to this assignment. After a little research learned that he was a poet and song writer. He was also the first to publish a copy of Edgar Allen Poe’s, The Raven.

Reflection on Web Wednesday

September 1st, 2011

During Web Wednesday on September 14th, I found some difficulty keeping up with the class especially with the delay on twitter. I always felt left behind and  chasing the deadlines. When instructed to recreate one of the styles presented by Queneau in a timed setting, pressure was put on me to perform and it was challenging. It was also interesting to see what other students presented as their “copycat” of Queneau. While working on my personal blog I found it difficult to change the “about” section on my webpage. I can’t find where to change it on dashboard.
 During Web Wednesday on September 21st, I was more familiar with the protocol. Operations went along a little more smoothly being that I was previously oriented in the digital atmosphere. I was also introduced to a new learning technique called Second Life. The concept of Second Life is intriguing and can be very helpful especially when making a class novel come to life. However, I could understand some of the concerns of the less technologically adapted students. In the perspective of creating internet based research projects, I am improving on my ability to effectively use web-based technologies in order to read and publish my academic writing everytime that I need to comment of respond to an assignment via my personal qwriting blogsite.