Discussion Posts





Discussion Posts

Discussion 1

The narrative, “The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County”, by Mark Twain is accounted via the framework of a conventional Southwestern story. In this case, a refined learned narrator tells a story that he happened to hear from an untrustworthy storyteller, and thus offers a cast-off narration. In his accounts, the narrator talks of a professional gambler who apparently becomes taken by a visitor passing through the town. Unlike most of his works, this particular narrative focuses considerably on the element of entertainment and abstraction. Simply, the main purpose of “The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County” involves the dissemination of humor via interaction between the two main characters. Simon Wheeler, as the key narrator, utilizes a stern, straight, and understated pattern that provides the account with a general humorous impact. As the narrator develops his recount, the narrative becomes more preposterous and satirical. This is specifically evidenced by the descriptions given to the illnesses suffered by the horse as well as the efforts applied by the next character, Smiley, as he tries to teach the frog. In this respect, the author highlights the funny and personal qualities that are evident in the frontier characters. His utilization of excessively lengthy evocative sentences when associating Wheeler’s recount is evidenced by the manner in which he slows down the language via the use of awful grammar, linguistics, and weighty dialect. Further evidence of the narrative’s purpose is illustrated by the ending. Accordingly, the amusing story culminates with one of the characters outwitting the other. Specifically, Jim Smiley ends up outwitting every person within the story despite his lack of self-confidence in his own intelligence.

Discussion 2

Despite the disparities in authorship, significant connections are evident between Kate Chopin’s “Desiree’s Baby”, and W. E. B. Du Bois’ “The Souls of Black Folk”. One of the main associating elements present in both narratives involves the implications of race especially on human relations. In the first narrative, the events that surround the protagonist take place in the Southern United States, specifically prior to the occurrence of the American Civil War. At this time, African Americans were treated as second-class citizens. In addition to this, most of them were used as slaves in the plantations, which were a notable characteristic of most Southern states. In this case, the focus is not significantly on the setting but rather on the negative implications arising from color or race. In “Desiree’s Baby”, the main character is confronted with the effects that race imposes on her marital relationship after the discovery of a black baby. After consultations with her husband, Armand, Desiree is left alone to fend for a Negro child that is apparently unwanted in the respective household. At this point, it is evident that race functions as the key factor that separates individuals. In a much wider sense, this separation based on race/color can be viewed as Du Bois’ concept of the color line. In the “Souls of Black Folk”, the issue of the color line illustrates the extent to which race or color assumes a role in the demarcation of people. Hence, along the set racial boundaries, the relationships between people are affected negatively. Interestingly, Du Bois’ concept of the color line relates considerably to the setting implied in Chopin’s narrative. In the book, Du Bois asserts that the respective concern comprises the main problem evident in 20th century United States. Hence, in this respect, both literary works are connected via the aspect of race and its effects on associations and relationships.

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