Untouchable

“‘All right,’ agreed Baka without any show of formality, and going out of doors sat down on the edge of a broken cane chair, the only article of furniture of European design which he had been able to acquire in pursuance of his ambition to live like an Englishman.” (Anand 15)

The quote is interesting because Bakha is living the glamour of an Englishman’s life. At the same time not really in a sense of irony.

The Postmaster

“There are so many such separations, such deaths, in life, what will come of turning back? Who belongs to whom in this world?” (Tagore 34)

The quote strikes me as very interesting because of the irony and the foreshadowing of it. Previously Ratan had been a “mother” who took care of the postmaster when he was ill. He even offering to teach her. However now even though he wishes he could turn back and bring her with him he does not because he believes it will not change much. That all ties must eventually be severed, Ratan alludes to this in the final sentence of the umbilical cord and creating delusions for her self when she is cut off.

Their Eyes Were Watching God

“Dey gointuh make ’miration ’cause mah love didn’t work lak they love, if dey ever had any. Then you must tell ’em dat love ain’t somethin’ lak uh grindstone dat’s de same thing everywhere and do de same thing tuh everything it touch. Love is lak de sea. It’s uh movin’ thing, but still and all, it takes its shape from de shore it meets, and it’s different with every shore.” (Hurston 226)

Here we are able to see Janie tell Pheoby that love isn’t the same for everyone because everyone experiences it differently. Sometimes it doesn’t work out as you plan it to. Once again we see the same sea analogy/reference we saw in the very opening of the text. “Ships”, “shores” and “seas” seem to reference Man and love, the flexibility and unpredictability of those things and because of it sometimes it never comes true like men’s dreams.

Their Eyes Were Watching God

“Ships at a distance have every man’s wish on board. For some they come in with the tide. For others they sail forever on the horizon, never out of sight, never landing until the Watcher turns his eyes away in resignation, his dreams mocked to death by Time. That is the life of men.”

“Now, women forget all those things they don’t want to remember, and remember everything they don’t want to forget. The dream is the truth. Then they act and do things accordingly.” (Hurston 1)

I’ve learned that at the beginning of many novels and books the author establishes a certain tone that carries on throughout the rest of the story or changes as they see fit. Here it seems as though Hurston is making a distinction between men and women, like the sexist saying that men are reckless and therefore live shorter lives. Hurston says it in a much nicer way but nevertheless says that some men never accomplish their dream and only learn to waste time. While women learn to act accordingly and do what they need to eventually accomplish what they set out to do. The tone is set, men and women are different in how they act and in what they accomplish.

The Maltese Falcon

“‘We’ve asked what we came to ask,’ Dundy said, frowning over eyes hard as green pebbles.” (Hammett 22)

I thought this quote was interesting not because of any underlying meaning behind it but because of the word choice like “green pebbles”. There is a lot of color imagery throughout the book: “warm green discs” (Hammett 19), “blue-grey and watery, though not in a weak way,” (Hammett 9), “cobalt-blue eyes” (Hammett 4). The descriptions are not simple descriptions but very detective-like where each thing is remembered in detail. As to whether or not the vivid color imagery will play a major role in the novel, I am intrigued to find out.

As I Lay Dying #2

“She just sat there, lost in her vanity and her pride, that had closed her heart to God and set that selfish mortal boy in His place.” (Faulkner 168)

I find this quote and Cora’s section in general very intriguing because Addie is equating Jewel to God. Cora tries to convert Addie to give herself up to God but she knows her own sins. Here we see that Addie’s idolization of Jewel has caused her to suffer for her sins. She truly believes that it is Jewel who will save her because he is her “cross” and “salvation”.

As I Lay Dying

“‘There’s not a woman in this section could ever bake with Addie Bundren,” (Faulkner 3).

“Under the quilt she makes no more of a hump than a rail would, and the only way you can tell she is breathing is by the sound of the mattress shucks.” (Faulkner 3).

These quotes are actually quite interesting because of the stark contrast between them. The contents of the quotes allow them to transition smoothly into each other but in actuality it is quite random. The first quote describes Addie’s tremendous ability to bake and then literally the next line we imagine a lifeless woman in bed, who we later find out is Addie. Then the scene transitions back to Kate and Cora taking about the cakes. The scenes somehow make sense but you can see the apparent contrast between each scene.

James Joyce “A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man” #2

“A flame began to flutter again on Stephen’s cheek as he heard in this proud address an echo of his own proud musings.”

“His soul had loved to muse in secret on this desire.”

(Joyce 133)

These quote were interesting an stood out for me because of the contrast and juxtaposition between Stephen’s true intentions and the intentions of the priest. The priest truly believes that it is God’s will calling out to Stephen to serve Him. But this pure intention is contrasted by Stephen’s selfish desire of collecting secrets and knowledge.

 

James Joyce “A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man”

“Suck was a queer word” (Joyce 8).

This was a very interesting excerpt from the novel because of young Stephen’s choice of words. The terms suck and queer are words that are strong and aggressive; they stand out in the text especially since Stephen is a child. With the next few paragraphs to follow this quote his choice of words would suggest something else entirely. But these words are also easy to pick out because they appear so often, about 15 times for the word queer and 4 times for the word suck.

I’d also like to make a note that because Stephen is a child his thoughts are fast paced and seem random at times which makes the story hard to follow sometimes. This draws a parallel to Virginia Woolf’s Monday or Tuesday, where the story seemed to be written without much rhyme or reason; simply because it interested her at the time.

Virginia Woolf: A Haunted House

“‘Here we slept,’ she says. And he adds, ‘Kisses without number.'” (Woolf 11)

This quote is intriguing because up until this point we do not know what the ghostly couple is doing in the house. It is apparent that they are searching for something because of the constant opening and closing of doors however, we do not know exactly what that something is until one of the couples says this line. Kisses without numbers can be interpreted one of two ways. One may be in a romantic sense where the kisses placed are too many to count. Another way to interpret this quote is that the kisses are meaningless and hold no real emotion behind them. This would explain the repeated motif of the word safe and the ending to this narrative.

The Middle Years

“He read his own prose, he turned his own leaves, and had, as he sat there with the spring sunshine on the page, an emotion peculiar and intense. His career was over, no doubt, but it was over, after all, with that” (James 611).

Leading up to this quote the overall tone of the writing was depressing with the main character Dencombe seeming very crestfallen. With him succumbing to his illness it was assumed that we, as readers, should feel bad for him because he is unable to recall even a sentence from a book which he had written. But the tone takes an unexpected turn after this quote, showing Dencombe pleasantly surprised re-reading his novel to discover a newfound appreciation of his work.