July 6, 2011, 3:09 pm
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-“multitude of voices”… more than one narrative voice

-narrative structure of Don Quixote stemmed from the structure of narratives in which the main character gets lost in; chivalric romances.

Omaha Bigelow:A Review
July 6, 2011, 2:50 pm
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If Omaha Bigelow, the novel, could speak… i think it would scream out “Don’t judge me!”. It is an insanely unique book in my opinion. The story line goes from totally realistic and somewhat intriguing to absolutely bizarre. I might have been a bit more interested in the book because it was based on life in NYC. Not only was it set in New York but the Lower East side of Manhattan; there is nothing cooler than that, friends!
Usually, stereotypes bother be but not in the sense where i become offended or feel disrespected for those who are being categorized. Though i did not get too hung up on this factor, i did take notice. Stereotyping, as was Vega (ex. green hair, played in a punk rock band and lived in the LES- come on! it doesnt get anymore LES-St. Mark’s street than that) bothers me more so because it shows a lack of creativity; a chance to think outside the box was not taken. The unlikely problems of Vega are extremely comical but of course also very vulgar. The 15 year-old girl with witch like powers is an even more unlikely solution to his problem! Truthfully, the vulgarity didnt exactly bother me. Perhaps if it were made into a motion picture i would have a hard time watching it but reading it is actually fun! I suppose it is because my mind allows me to see what i want, i dont have to stare at the directors point of view.

More about a story about a story that is about nothing…sound familiar?!
July 6, 2011, 4:34 am
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Whenever i hear “a story about nothing” i think about nothing else but my good ol’ friend Jerry Seinfeld and his show that has kept me entertained since i was too young to understand what i was laughing about.
For those who arent familiar with the show Seinfeld…get familiar! No but seriously, a lot of people my age are not fans or really never gave themselves the chance to become a fan. Allow me to elaborate on the brilliant nothingness that, creator Sir Larry David (Curb Your Enthusiasm) has created. Jerry Seinfeld; main character…real life “funny man” turned sitcom superstar…he played a quasi version of himself in the show as a comedian with 3 best friends who each have an interesting and hilarious personality but all pretty much “normal” New Yorkers. Jerry’s NYC apartment and the coffee shop down the street are the key hangout spots for congregating about…well…nothing! They really play out the “normal, modern, everyday” scheme of the average human being. Of course, it is a comedy so even death is turned into something laughable. The show features instances that could basically happen to anybody at any given moment, nothing overly dramatic…sometimes the show really is about nothing because it is revolving mostly around the way the thirty-something singles go about the many events in their busy lives.
SO…in the last two episodes of Seinfeld, season 4 Jerry and George go to NBC (the actual network in which Seinfeld is provided by) and they get the opportunity to produce their own show. They come up with a brilliant idea. When asked what the show would be about, they say, with extreme confidence: “Nothing!”. This is probably a play on the viewers and the incredible ratings; clearly the show is a hit in reality and so their replica show couldnt possibly be anything less. In these episodes, the characters are promoting a show titled “Jerry”; the show within the show. They audition characters and select them to their likings… this gives them to chance to tell their story to their disposition…As Barth (1984 [1981]) puts it, there are “tales within tales within tales”. Jerry and George are building a narrative within a narrative.

Urban dictionary
June 29, 2011, 3:43 pm
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Ever since I was younger my mother would constantly CONSTANTLY throw mini pop quizzes at me. Walking down the street, in the market, driving to or from school… one question… if I didn’t know it…Her reaction would always put me to shame “What?! You’re in the fourth grade and you can’t spell Czechoslovakia?!” …Sweet lady, really, she is. Anything would inspire her random spelling or math bees, but her favorite thing to do, even to this very day is to test me on my vocabulary knowledge. My mother is a book worm, I unfortunately did not take after her and she knows that so she tried her very best to stuff all the words shes learned since she was an immigrant 13 year old into my head. I read…just not as much as her…5 books a week? I’m sorry, my eyes will fall out of my head. Not knocking it, reading is great; soothing and educating- i feel smarter with every sentence I accomplish. I’ve grown to appreciate it. What I really love doing is learning new words. Often times i skip over words I dont know just to get through the text quicker but 3 lines down it’s killing me and Im compelled to look it up, it’s like a compulsive disorder! I even downloaded several dictionary applications to my phone- I’m obsessed with learning new words! Soooo, I discovered the coolest word ever is the midst of reading the most impossible novel ever– “Don Quixote” : Quixotic. The word itself is so cool, chic if you will. I simple love it. Can one love a word? I do, I love words…. And i loveee this one! The exact meaning is :

resembling or befitting Don Quixote.

extravagantly chivalrous or romantic; visionary, impractical, or impracticable.

impulsive and often rashly unpredictable.
Okay so when i first learned of the word’s existence i was a bit intrigued thinking that this is where Cervantes must have gotten his idea from! And then I quickly remembered Cervantes was not an American,(laughing at myself- Duh Toni)  and probably, this word was stolen from the Spanish literature just as all of the American language was stolen from every part of the word’s language. Don Quixote would be proud. His story transcended through time and was made to be almost impossible to forget but also impossible to confuse the story of the man who fought the windmills with any other story, past or present. Now, Don Quixote has officially been dubbed a permanent fixture in society. The definition of the word comes from the character’s background as a man lost in his own imagination.

Connecting narratology to a major motion film
June 24, 2011, 11:32 pm
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In the beginning of the course, the professor mentioned a few times… “in movies, in films”… i thought, oh cool, we’ll be able to make a connection at some point between the books were reading and films…. And then i lost some faith as i figured by films he meant 1920s silent films- things i would never be able to find on my own. Thats why i lost some faith- not because it wasnt interesting how Professor Alvarez made the class see that the visual tools a film maker uses can be connect to narratology…it was and it makes sense- but, as i said…i dont think i could have ever thought to find a silent film and say “Yes! This makes perfect sense!”. Come to think of it….that is way more brilliant than the connection I stumbled upon last night while skimming through my Netflix library (which may i add is quite deceiving- the film posters for each movie, i thought was a great catch…it made me turn on Scream 2…I love the Scream poster! 5 stars to that while the movie gets a 3…and I’m being nice, only because its a cult classic for my generation) Back on topic. I discovered that Scream 2 starts off VERY similarly as Samperio’s “She Lived in a Story” … It opens with a theater playing a movie based on the “true” events of Scream 1 (a mass murderer who has been targeting the civilians in a town since his first victim, the main character, Cidney Prescotts’ mother) Scream 1 is being recreated by the director of the movie playing WITHIN the actual movie i sat down to watch. These are the narrative levels in which Jahn breaks down in his narrative theory.

Scream 2 would be a first degree narrative. Although it is connected to its predecessor because it is its own story, a new chapter for the towns people and a new killer, it is the matrix narrative. A matrix narrative has stories embedded in itself, such as the opening scene where an audience was watching a movie based on true events. The movie within the first scene of Scream 2 would be considered the second degree narrative and also a distraction. The film focuses on a couple in the theater. A young couple; the main targets of the killer, and the female is very critical of what she is watching; the whole time saying out loud what the character should do and how she is “so dumb”. The brutal death scene is approaching and she hovers over her boyfriend’s lap to hide from the gruesomeness when all of a sudden she is sitting in a pool of her own blood. She is stabbed just after the woman on the screen is stabbed and as the crowd is going wild for they were all waiting anxiously which ghost masks; a signature of the movie, for the first killing in the movie.  It was a story embedded into the plot. When this scene finishes the story resumes and there are really no more hypo-narratives or references to that scene again.


I just thought it was kind of cool 🙂

I watch what I write and how I write what I watch
June 22, 2011, 10:01 pm
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I’m writing away- my hand swerves as I lose track of what I should be writing- or should I be writing anything? Should is the wrong word. When I’m confused, it shows in my right hand, the one that holds the pen. I think I have pretty handwriting…somewhat sloppy but people tell me they like it, i smile and then I look over and see their chicken scratch so of course they like it. I love beautiful handwriting I become envious of people who have better handwriting than me… Envy is a terrible trait…I dont have much of it in me… and when it floats to the surface I make it leave- quickly! Because I hate it so much, it’s a terrible look! I often leave the ts uncrossed until the word I am writng is finished, same goes for the i; i leave it undotted. I did it just now…I go back and cross my ts and dot my is when the word, sometimes if I’m rushing, when the sentence is over. It is a trick, or maybe its more of an inconvenience to some, that my third grade teacher Mrs. Geritano taught me when we were learning cursive. My hand always hurts after just a short time of writing…this just started to happen to me in the passed year. perhaps i should take a break from being and english major and follow my dreams, dreams that require no actual labor…is this considered labor? i think yes. No, i just press down too hard but its impossible for me to write light and fast….

Narrative Levels explained…edited
June 22, 2011, 6:00 pm
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One could get a general understanding of “narrative levels” by simply analyzing the title alone. Stories are narratives; situations and or series of events told by a character or a protagonist. Sometimes the reader is aware of the protagonist and who they are. According to Manfred Jahn, there are no limitations for the narration of a story. The levels of narratives can also be looked at literally; just as there is a building that serves one purpose with multiple stories within it, there are multiple narratives within one story.

Samperio is the writer of “She Lived in A Story”, readers can literally find his work in libraries and book stores and they may run internet searches on him and find information about his life and maybe even his family and most definitely background information on his complicated works. He creates Guillermo Segovia, a writer by the same first name as his. Segovia is not the author of his own life as the story starts out, we read as if it is being told by a protagonist, possibly Samperio. Readers are given a back story but this is not at Segovia’s will, this is the author’s style of writing and Segovia is merely a character at this point. Segovia, the 34 year old professor is the subject of a first degree narrative; this is the story that encompasses and uninvolved in the later narratives. The author grants Segovia creative qualities and he therefore is able to create a story of his own about a woman who he chooses to model after the qualities of an actress. Her name is Ofelia. The story of Ofelia, the one Segovia begins narrating, is a bit complicated to grasp. Segovia is the character of Samperio- the frame. Segovia’s narrative is considered to be within the frame hence called the matrix, a second degree narrative fixed within the first. Since Segovia and Ofelia are both a product of Samperio’s imagination they are both embedded in the frame except Ofelia’s first person accounts are then considered the hypo narrative. These levels of imaginations are the essence of Jahn’s account of different levels of storytelling.

Don Quixote de la Mancha;Reality Check[ing] Account Balance: -0
June 21, 2011, 11:49 pm
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This may seem like an obvious statement but Im going to write anyway and attempt to expand on it…

It is evident Don Quixote lives in a fantasy; a well thought out one for he gets his ideas from the ancient novels that he so religiously reads. This world he lives in is quite possibly the best thing that could have ever happened to him this is because when ever something goes wrong, Don Quixote can justify it and perseveres. On only the second encounter along his path on his aimless journey for adventure; adventure that he concocts from pretty much nothing-ness, he is thrown to the ground by his loyal steed! (In what story of an honorable knight have they ever fallen off their horse and been beaten?!- this will come in handy later as i try to emphasize my point). Something like that could never stop the ingenious Don Quixote. He believes to see things for what they really are while others are the ones who are unclear of the truth. The books that made him lose sleep, his weight and wits became a world in which he no longer chose to live in but strongly believed in and saw nothing else to be truer. As strong willed, prideful and intelligent as he is he is also completely insane. The world to him is not how it is to the rest of society. A grasp on reality is what he lacks most. Quixote can be considered ignorant and possibly arrogant too… The horse he chooses to be his faithful companion is an old shabby horse, certainly not fit for a knight to concur anything upon. Why would he chose such a horse if he was this great protector of the world?! I suppose, the way he sees Dulcinea as a princess; when she is really a peasant is the same way he sees a stallion when it is really a weak, old horse. My point is, he is not only, NOT what he thinks himself to be but is also..almost…just getting by… i noticed this in the beginning of the story when he encounters a farmer beating his servant for losing yet another sheep. Sheep cost money and because he has lost sheep in the past amongst other things which came out of his pay, the servant was not being paid at all. Don Quixote steps in and automatically seizes the situation and orders the farmer to obey him; belittling the farmer which most likely frustrated him. The farmer was stunned and without hesitation accepted everything Don Quixote declared. “I swear by the sun that shines down on us that i am minded to run you through with this lance….otherwise…i shall exterminate and annihilate you this very instant.” Quixote wasted no time nor did he bother trying to build up authoritative stamina, he dove right in.

Although he hollered and yelled at proclaimed all these “high and mighty” statements and reached such a high altitude of respect and authority in that very instant and then….. he just walks away…?! “Do not forget you have promised and sworn under pain of the penalties prescribed” -DQ “And as he said this he spurred Rocinante and before very long he had got underway.”

Why the in the world would he leave the situation he just created, just like that? Being a knight errant he believes in the bond in a man’s word i suppose…? (I say this shaking my head!) This is what i mean… he made a huge spectacle of the situation in that had nothing to do with him and then at its highest point, the climax, he “spurs Rocinante”. He should have waited for the servant to be paid and or set free at least! Did he not realize that would be the most logical thing to do? Because clearly the farmer’s pride and ego was damaged so he beats the servant til near death once Don Quixote is clearly out of sight.

|3L06 P05T #?whoscounting: Don Quixote, Chapter 18 Narrator analysis
June 21, 2011, 11:17 pm
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The narrator basically gives a summary of what the conversation consists of. There is some dialog to begin with then the narrator cuts in to speed up the process. We read when the conversation ends and when another begins but we do not read the actual words that end and begin these conversations. The narrator is choosing what parts of the conversation to deliver and which to omit. There is plenty of dialog without interruption, though.

After Quixote gives a very long speech to the men he and Sancho have encountered along their way the narrator gives a description of the reaction- the perception of Quixote they travelers had. “They could see”…”which astonished them”…these descriptions imply that the narrator must be a homodiegetic story teller- one that is “on the scene”; how else could he or she know the reactions and emotions of the travelers.

Characterizing Don Quixote: Miguel Cervates’ Flat Creation (Response 2)
June 21, 2011, 4:16 pm
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There are hundreds of thousands, if not millions of stories in circulation today. Miguel Cervantes though was the very first to tell a story of Don Quixote’s kind. It was not until this novel was released that the world learned what a novel was. Society went from poetry and long epics to the very first 982 page novel consisting of events and enough characters to create three separate stories of their own. It was certainly a lot to take it; Don Quixote hit the world like a ton of bricks with it’s main character being unknowingly the only one lost in a world amongst wide eyed realists and an unreliable narrator, for it may take some time to figure out who it truly is.
Don Quixote, like Samperio’s characters Guillermo Segovia and Ofelia, in “She Lived in a Story” is a character trapped in a mind. Unlike Samperio’s characters who are creations of his, the author’s mind, Quixote is the creation of Quixote. Don Quixote is characterized as an object of imagination. This, according to Manfred Jahn’s “Narratology: A Guide to the Theory of Narrative” can be classified as a “dramatic characterization technique” known as figural. By definition figural is “the characterizing subject is a character.” Just that is done in the novel. The main focus of the narrative is Quixote’s impossible, one track mind that no one around him seems to be apart of yet his insanity leaves him blind to that. His alienation from reality is what classifies him as insane, hence “the subject is the character”.
The novel basically begins with this subject due to Don Quixote’s behavior and speech. He literally lives in a modern society surrounded by humble means and people. Despite his average locality his entity was in chivalric novels in which he lost all sense of responsibility as well as his grasp on reality. “Enchantments, fights, battles, challenges, wounds…” were absorbed in his mind. By dusting off the armour of his forefathers and placing it on his body before setting out on the adventures he felt he owed to the knights he read of and idolized, Quixote is auto characterizing himself. There is no stride to convince others of his passions or a desire to make people understand. It is without any cause besides his devotion to knight errantry that he decides to “travel about the world with his armour and his arms and his horse in search of adventures, and to practice all those activities that he knew from his books were practiced by knights errant…” . Auto characterization is “usually unintentional”. This relates directly to Quxiote’s mentality for he does not purposely try to deceive people. He has a distorted outlook on society and wishes to live within the period of knights in shining armour. His verbal and physical behavior give way for a critical analysis on this subject, again it is not intentionally or purposely being made up, as if it were a charade. Don Quixote is lost in the realms of the passion that lives in his heart and mind.
There are times when people around him, such as the foil character, Sancho Panza attempt to correct his delusions (“what giants” VIII pg. 63). It simply adds fuel to his fire. Quixote regards any sort of realistic outlook as a product of enchantment or in the case of the giants, he considers Sancho to be afraid. Don Quixote maintains his stance and ironically there is some stability to his insanity. According to Jahn’s theory in which he refers to E.M. Froster’s distinction of “flat and round characters”, this would make Quixote a flat character. There is no change in pace or change in behavior. Quixote remains unmotivated by anything unless it possesses the will to test his strength as a knight, on a quest to “right the wrong”.

Work Cited

Jahn, Manfred. 2005. Narratology: A Guide to the Theory of Narrative. English Department, University of Cologne
Don Quixote (Penguin Classics) : Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra, John Rutherford, Roberto Gonzalez Echevarria: Books.

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