In her novel Frankenstein, Mary Shelley confronts the sublimity of nature through the narratives of Robert Walton and Victor Frankenstein. According to Edmund Burke’s Philosophical Inquiry into the Origin of Our Ideas of the Sublime and Beautiful, “Whatever is in any sort terrible…is a source of the sublime; that is, it is productive of the… Continue reading Sublimity of Frankenstein
Eve is the primary representation of femininity in John Milton’s Paradise Lost. There are other feminine characters, such as Sin, as well as concepts or objects given feminine characterization, such as light and the earth. Given the Biblical account of creation and Milton’s historical and cultural context, there is little reason, literary or otherwise, for… Continue reading Femininity Lost
As the first African-American woman novelist, Harriet Wilson wrote in the shadow of two intersecting oppressions: racism and sexism. In the title page of her roman à clef Our Nig, she offers an alternative title: “Sketches from the Life of a Free Black, in a Two-Story White House, North. Showing that Slavery’s Shadows Fall Even… Continue reading Two Stories of Oppression in “Our Nig”
In his play, Death and the King’s Horseman, Wole Soyinka explores the clash of modern Western and traditional African cultures and values through a real-life incident that happened among the Yoruba people of Nigeria in 1946. The village king has recently died, and in the tradition of Yoruba customs, his horseman, Elesin Oba, is expected… Continue reading Colonial Subjectivism in Death and the King’s Horseman
The play Death and the King’s Horseman by Wole Soyinka examines colonialism by depicting the clashing of cultures and exposing the dangers of ethnocentrism. The story takes place in Nigeria, following several main characters: an Englishman named Pilkings and his wife, Jane, and Elesin Oba. As the late King’s horseman, Elesin Oba must commit suicide… Continue reading Death and the King’s Horseman
You probably read Hamlet, either the play or its Sparknotes, in English class. Maybe you wrote an essay about “to be or not to be” or captioned an Instagram post “To thine own self be true.” However, you most likely didn’t think Hamlet was relevant to your life. My experience reading Hamlet was cathartic because… Continue reading Shakespeare’s Timeless Tragedy
In high school, I asked my youth group leader a question that has plagued humanity for centuries: “Who gets to go to Heaven?” He pointed me to John 3:16: “For God so loved the world that He gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.”… Continue reading Who Goes Home?